They think all homeless people are on drugs. Yeah, [I am offended].
There’s nothing there to help anyone that’s homeless.
It’s just do it
yourself or find your own way.
One homeless man in Dublin yesterday, who
did not wish to be named
A new initiative to encourage people to stop donating to those begging on the street began yesterday.
The campaign is run by the Dublin City Business Improvement District (BID) and the addiction charity Tiglin.
a representative organisation for more than 2,500 businesses across the
city, claims active street begging creates a perception that the city
Research conducted by Dublin City Council last year
showed feeling unsafe was one of the most significant factors negatively
influencing people’s experience of the city centre.
The Change for the
Better campaign is a “diverted giving” scheme, whereby people are urged
to stop giving money to individuals begging on the street and to instead
donate to one of 40 charity boxes in shops and businesses around the
These funds go to
Tiglin, which supports people with addiction issues. BID and a number of
the businesses supporting the campaign have offered to match the
donations made by the public through the boxes.
Richard Guiney said active begging is “a serious problem” in the city
“There has been a stark increase in the number of active begging
incidents recorded in the BID area over the past year. We know
from consumer surveys that there is a perception that Dublin is not a
safe city, when actually the statistics say it is extremely safe. About
60 per cent of all tourists will visit Dublin and this perception is
very damaging. Previous research has shown that one of the main
reasons for begging is to fund drug and alcohol addiction. We have
observed cases of professional begging in the city and other situations
where money given by the public has been used to buy drugs.”
operations director Phil Thompson said the campaign was an educational
process for both beggars and members of the public who give money.
Murphy (45) from Terenure, Dublin, is a former heroin addict who begged
on the streets to fund his addiction but has completed Tiglin’s
“There was a rave scene in Dublin during
the nineties and I fell into that,” he said. “I started using ecstasy
and progressed on to heroin. I was about 35 when I was kicked out and
ended up homeless. I wasn’t your typical beggar sitting on a
bridge with a cup, but I’m ashamed to say I used to walk around tapping
people to see if they would give me money.Deep down, people knew if I asked for money for a hostel that I really wanted it for drugs.”