Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Viewers Blast Police after Treatment of 'Homeless' Man on TV Show

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Viewers Blast Police after Treatment of 'Homeless' Man on TV Show

Article excerpt

VIEWERS of Channel 4 documentary 60 Days On The Streets have condemned Greater Manchester Police for the 'disgraceful' treatment of homeless people.

The first episode, which aired on Thursday night, showed the devastating scale of homelessness and the stories behind those sleeping rough. The two-part series documents survivalist Ed Stafford sleeping rough for two months in Manchester, London and Glasgow with no money, food or shelter.

In the show he sets out to understand Britain's homelessness crisis, and what life is really like for those living on the streets.

Thursday's episode, filmed in December last year, shows Stafford getting to know various rough-sleepers around Piccadilly Gardens and documented the city's devastating Spice epidemic.

The programme also tells the heartbreaking story of Deana, a former Coronation Street extra and Debenhams model, who now sleeps rough outside the store.

But it seems many viewers were left most shocked by the 'treatment' afforded by those living on the streets by officers from GMP.

One moment in the episode showed Stafford sitting in the street when he was warned by two officers he could be arrested, after a member of the public gave him some hot food.

What you Write to: M.E.N, House, Oldham, Or email: @men-The male officer can be heard saying, "I'm not sure if I know you or not - my job in the city centre is begging."

Stafford replies, saying, "I'm not begging."

The officer then says, "But you are.

You don't have to talk to people or have a card or a cup.

"Basically if I walk along and I see you placed to beg, I think you're there to receive money or food - you're begging.

"You're committing an offence. This is your last warning."

Viewers took to Twitter to air their outrage at the treatment, which some branded as a 'disgrace.' One Twitter user said: "Watching #60daysonthestreets, it's a disgrace how the Greater Manchester Police speak to these homeless people. …

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