1. ITV Report

Police slammed on twitter for anti-begging sign

Police in Lambeth have been accused of 'demonising' the homeless by installing a large sign telling people not to give money to beggars outside Waterloo station.

The sign has been installed by Lambeth Police outside Waterloo Credit: @tiamsorensen

Officers said the signs had been installed in response to concerns from the local community, and they wanted to make people aware that some of the area's most prolific beggars are actually using the money to buy drugs.

But the signs have drawn fierce criticism on Twitter, with some users calling the signs 'disgusting' and claiming that they risk demonising homeless people.

Following concerns raised by the local community, begging in the Waterloo area is now a community and policing priority for local police.

Our research has shown that some of our most prolific beggars are not homeless and have accommodation. Some have a history of drugs use which is funded, in part, by begging.

We are working with our partners to support and assist beggars as well as enforce illegal activity and raise awareness of this issue to those that use Waterloo using dot matrix signs.

– Lambeth Police