Liverpool slammed by MP for 'driving homeless from benches'
Published by Brian Church for 24dash.com in Local Government and also in Central Government
Liverpool slammed by MP for driving homeless from benches
Tory MP Nadine Dorries has accused Liverpool City Council of trying to drive homeless people from public benches by attaching arm rests.
The MP for Mid Bedfordshire tweeted that “Labour run Liverpool has arm rests across all public benches so that the homeless can't lie down".
However, a council spokesman said that Dorries' accusation is "completely untrue" and added that the local authority did not know where such an idea had come from.
Dorries followed up on her original tweet with “I don't get any council which 'thinks' like that. 'How do we make it really difficult for those in dire straights and in need of help?'”
The MP then posted a number of pictures of benches in Liverpool with arm rests she claimed had been added to stop homeless people from lying down.
Dorries accusations follow revelations this week that metal spikes had been placed in the ground outside a London block of flats to deter rough sleepers.
The news caused outrage on social media, with even London mayor Boris Johnson expressing his disapproval, tweeting "Spikes are simply not the answer [to solving homelessness]."
Liverpool City Council's spokesperson added: “It is not the case that our public benches have arm rests to prevent the homeless from lying down. We have outreach workers for homeless people and good provisions for them. We are at a loss to understand why somebody would say that.
“Our benches some have arm rests at the end but that’s not to prevent people from lying on them.”
Dorries also received criticism from other Twitter users. One said: "If you are that concerned about the homeless, why are you happy to see your party cutting more money from Liverpool."