Your kindness is their scapegoat! Giving change to homeless people is not the killer.
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In Woking (Surrey) this week a poster with the gaping headline "Your kindness could kill" caught our attention. Promoted by the York Road project, a charity targeting homelessness, the poster refers to passers by giving change to homeless people, and how this can effectively kill them (as they use the change to buy drugs and alcohol). Although this is often the case, it is the failure on the part of the Government for not providing enough accessible, non-discriminatory and straightforward aid to the people affected. Your kindness is their scapegoat! We believe that promoting kindness as a negative thing, discouraging people from generosity and compassion, is inherently detrimental to our society. This affects everyone! Those with nothing are branded as addicts, useless and beyond the help of common kindness. At the same time those with something to give are being burdened with the threat of second hand murder through their generosity. York Road Project maintains their moral ground by encouraging people to buy food instead, but this is common knowledge, and the money spent of printing these discouraging posters could have been better spent on helping those they claim to care for, not alienating them.
We are asking Surrey County Council to pressure York Road Project re-think their "marketing" strategy, to promote kindness and find ways of helping those with nothing without discouraging community generosity.
Many people feel that they would rather put their change directly into the hand of the affected than trust that a charity will direct their resources appropriately.
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