There is an unfortunate reality in Tauranga.
The reality is open for viewing by merely walking around the city's Central Business District, through the main streets of Greerton or even going through a drive-thru of a fast food outlet late at night.
The reality is seen in many other areas of the city too, but these are just some of the areas where it is more apparent.
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This reality is the struggle many people in and around Tauranga face every day. People have no home or shelter, no jobs and no food and some survive by sleeping and wandering around the streets begging for help. For some its the only way for them to exist.
Some choose to ignore it, others get angered by it, and some try to help ease people's struggles through donations of money, food, time and more.
This week, the Tauranga City Council's Community and Culture Committee voted 6-2 to ban begging and rough sleeping within 5m of any Tauranga retail or hospitality business.
I get it.
I understand that having rough sleepers and beggars hanging around a business may hurt businesses and their owners.
Potential shoppers may purposely avoid these places and spend their money elsewhere simply because they don't want to be approached by people asking for help.
It could have a negative impact on businesses.
However, I don't think this is an answer to the problem.
Instead, this ban will move rough sleepers and beggars on just slightly, better-allowing shoppers to spend hard-earned dollars without guilt or for some, maybe disgust.
Moving them on will fix a problem of having them in people's way.
If we ban begging within 5m of businesses, we are just ensuring it becomes an "out of sight, out of mind" issue that is less visible in the city we call home. Something I'm sure many people would like to believe to be a non-issue because it's so far from their own experience.
I'm not saying I don't believe some beggars are intimidating or aggressive - I'm sure there are and that is not okay.
I've been asked for money from a few people while walking in town, and even in a drive-thru, and I have no doubt some people are more genuine than others.
I've never felt intimidated though.
Groups working with the homeless in Tauranga are also unsure about the proposed begging ban, which the council's legal staff have said it could prove "unenforceable".
Tania Lewis-Rickard, director of food charity Kai Aroha, which feeds the homeless in Greerton every Friday evening, said a hīkoi was planned for Monday as a way to be the strength for the weak.
She said homeless people already suffered from rejection.
I feel fortunate that I have never had to face such a situation and find it hard to envisage myself ever being homeless but that doesn't mean I don't have empathy for people who legitimately find themselves in hardship.