A week ago, social media activist @imajsaclaimant tweeted a snap of a poster appearing on buses around the West Midlands, encouraging people not to give to beggars:
To date, the post has been retweeted over 4,200 times. The poster tells readers that giving to rough sleepers keeps them on the streets and encourages the homeless to buy drugs – which many people with any experience of working with homeless people would consider grossly simplistic, dismissive and prejudicial.
Fortunately, the high number of shares and evidence public outrage helped the tweet reach the attention of the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner, who responded by ordering them to be removed and condemned them unequivocally:
A good result and proof, if it were needed, of what social media can achieve. No wonder the powers-that-be fear it.
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