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Scottish Charity Register No. SC043760

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'No sleeping' signs still on the Strand

September 25 2009
Some shopkeepers claim the signs are ineffective, but others still post them Some shopkeepers in the Strand area are continuing to post 'No sleeping' signs on their shop fronts to stop rough sleepers from using their entrances to bed down at night. However, other shopkeepers have deserted the practice, not out of conscience, but rather claiming it is no longer effective. Shopkeepers initially welcomed the Whitehall Safer Neighbourhood [police] Team's 'No sleeping' scheme, launched a year ago, as an efficient way to tackle the presence of the homeless in the big tourist area. The posters give police permission to move on anyone found sleeping in a doorway, as they are proof the shopkeeper has not consented. "When the scheme was launched a year ago, we got a poster, but we don't have it any more," said the assistant manager of Clinton's Cards in Charing Cross. "Honestly, we realised that it's not worth it... We only had problems with the people sleeping on our shop doors for a limited period of time. It's not a 'No sleeping' sign that discourage people from sleeping here. Moreover, the posters were not free, but we had to pay to get one, so we prefer to call the police if we have any problems or incidents." Conversely, a Spar shop's worker said they continued to use the signs on their front window, claiming it helped prevent the shop from being targeted as a "dormitory".
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