Beggars face further restrictions / News / The Foreigner

The Foreigner Beggars face further restrictions. Legal begging could be under threat if politicians get their way. An increasing number of Norwegian municipalities are considering compulsory reporting. Legislators overturned Norway’s begging ban in 2006, but people collecting money and beggars have to pre-register with police in more than 30 municipalities, according to figures from private foundation Lovdata. Several more councils now want to introduce the same procedure. Aurskog-Høland in Akershus County near the Swedish border, described by officials as “The spacious and generous municipality” with a population of just over 14,250, is one of them.

streetbeggarsnorway, begginglaws



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Beggars face further restrictions

Published on Thursday, 23rd June, 2011 at 14:51 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .

Legal begging could be under threat if politicians get their way. An increasing number of Norwegian municipalities are considering compulsory reporting.



Legislators overturned Norway’s begging ban in 2006, but people collecting money and beggars have to pre-register with police in more than 30 municipalities, according to figures from private foundation Lovdata. Several more councils now want to introduce the same procedure.

Aurskog-Høland in Akershus County near the Swedish border, described by officials as “The spacious and generous municipality” with a population of just over 14,250, is one of them.

“We have had some nomads, but there’s nobody here who sits and begs on a daily basis. It’s not a problem,” Mayor Jan A. Mærli tells Aftenposten.

Justifying the need for a policy, Mr Mærli says, “Quite a few beggars cross the border into Norway. We want to be able to intercept those who could be coming beforehand and consult local police.”

Oslo’s officials have passed laws obliging beggars should pre-register and have asked the National Police Directorate (POD) to enforce them.

Whilst Steinar Talgø, head of the directorate’s legal section, thinks these will be reversed, one leading Conservative (H) politician disagrees.

“I base this belief on the fact that [Labour’s (Ap)] Minister of Justice, Knut Storberget, has recommended introducing statutes about begging in the municipality,” says City Council leader Stian Berger Røsland.

In reply to Aftenposten’s question that beggars will avoid local laws by becoming musicians, Mr Røsland says, “That happens quite often already. However, we can use pre-registration as a tool against begging.”

Meanwhile, police in Bergen say this proceedure for all street enterprises has worked.

“We do not stigmatise beggars, and have taken account of everyone who uses public spaces for this type of activity, be it selling, performing, or collecting money. It’s not about begging but law and order,” Officer Arne Fjellstad says.

Politicians in Norway’s second-largest municipality, Drammen, where more than 20 percent are foreigners, say they want to veto begging entirely.




Published on Thursday, 23rd June, 2011 at 14:51 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .

This post has the following tags: streetbeggarsnorway, begginglaws.





  
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