Auckland's begging ban bylaw vote today

The Auckland Council is today voting on a bylaw which could see beggars, illegal windscreen washers and buskers banned from the streets.

Auckland City Mission's Diane Robertson says the bylaw is welcome, providing it is not misused.

She says the bylaw is about ensuring everyone feels safe.

"Everybody has the right to walk down the street and feel safe.

"I think on the same part, homeless people, people who are begging (and) people who are different are a part of our community, and so they have a right to do what they're doing.''

Robertson hopes the bylaw is applied fairly.

"If people are causing a nuisance or are affecting public safety, then they can be moved on.

"But if they are just begging quietly, then this bylaw should not apply to them.''

The Onehunga Business Association's Amanda Kinzett agrees, saying the law will only apply to those being disruptive.

"If someone's just sitting down with their hat out, that's different from someone that's going straight up and being aggressive.''

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