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Should charity fundraisers be banned from the streets?

It is difficult to draw the line between persuasion and harassment, but should charity fundraisers be banned from the streets?

Published on April 17th 2009.

Should charity fundraisers be banned from the streets?
Yes: - 59%
No: - 41%

Walking down Market Street can be a daunting experience. Most are familiar with the usual antics of charity fundraisers waving their arms, dropping a pick-up line or pretending to be interested in your day. They can be spotted miles away with their clipboards and bright T-shirts.

Charity fundraisers are commonly perceived as an inconvenience to those who just want to get to their destination in peace. Most people are generous when it comes to charity, but do not appreciate being approached or 'hassled' by overly enthusiastic fundraisers.

One city centre worker who was persuaded to part with £7 a month while rushing to Tesco said: “I'm all for dropping my coppers in a box, but I ended up signing because he wouldn't leave me alone. I said I would do it online, but he just got the clipboard out and asked if I was a Ms or a Mrs.”

This scenario may resound with many who have had similar experiences, so Confidential spoke to two charity fundraisers to learn more about their jobs. One described it as 'very rewarding' and strictly reserved for the thick-skinned and the passionate.

It’s the sort of job you do because you love it,” said the fundraiser of three years, who is paid an hourly rate and gets no commissions for the number of people he signs up. He claims to have personally pulled in £2m. Street fundraising is the most profitable method for charities to raise cash. He said: “That’s an amazing rate of return and you’re making a difference and changing the world.”

Another fundraiser admitted: “People see the T-shirt and know we want their money. I mean, we’re asking them for £100 a year and money’s tight for everyone, but there are always a few gems around.”

The job is certainly not an easy one, as these street workers face rejection after rejection and are consciously avoided by many passer-bys. Thrown into the lion's den, they are often subjected to abuse by people who do not want to be stopped. One of our chaps said: “I've had people spitting and swearing, and even had a knife pointed at me.”

Asked how his working day panned out, he said: “It depends on what people say. You will find nice people and you will always find knobs. You learn to build a thick skin. If someone’s particularly rude, then it’s not cool. If they don’t want to help us, we’ll just say thanks and wish them a good day.”

He revealed that being smiley and energetic is always the most effective way to approach potential donors, but even that can get on some people's nerves. One disgruntled city centre worker said: “They have so much personality I want to punch them. They just make you feel really grumpy and inept because they are so happy.”

She continues: “They are so spread out across the street that you can't get past. They play on you being a decent human being and not ignoring them. I feel guilty about being abrupt with them as I'm for charity and can understand why they do it, but if you work in the city centre you have to deal with it everyday.”

It is difficult to draw the line between persuasion and harassment, but should charity fundraisers be banned from the streets? Vote on the Manchester Confidential Homepage.

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123 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

JinkiesApril 17th 2009.

Aw the charity workers are alright. I tell you who should be banned though; the two people painted white that stand still all day. What the **** are they about?

emma graceApril 17th 2009.

The male NSPCC ones are always beautiful. I don't mind them....

east lancsApril 17th 2009.

Emma, I rather think that's the point. Like the pretty girl who got me by the Coop in Didsbury one hungover morning. Despite giving to Amnesty via DD, she got me to sign up again... "well you can cancel the other one"... seemed such a good idea at the time!

emma graceApril 17th 2009.

I know...I chat to them for ages then at the end when they get round to the signing up bit, that's when I decide to inform them that I already have a Direct Debit to the NSPCC every month.

DrakeApril 17th 2009.

Surely they make walking up the street a lot more fun. If you can make it up Market Street without getting hit by them or the Phones4U salesmen or the elderly women with clipboards, you're won. Something. Turns the city into a gigantic game of BUlldog.

BenApril 17th 2009.

I always feel quite rude if I don't stop, but I've signed up for a few in the past and my excuse is that if I said yes to every single one I'd literally have no money for myself. I used to be one of those people who ask you where you get your hair done in the middle of the street (yes I'm sure I was the bain of many of your exsistanses,) and I used to talk to them - all pretty nice people, if a little "away with the fairies," in some cases. But a big reason why I don't give in too much is I always wonder how much of my monthly donation actually ends up going towards helping people. The fundraisers arent on a bad wage, and that money has to come from somewhere doesn't it?

Thoroughbred MancApril 17th 2009.

Bulldog (or BB123 as we'd say before charging across the schoolyard). Now there's a game from back in the day...

CastlefieldApril 17th 2009.

I too was a 'where do you get your hair done' person for a day! Then I made my fortune. But anyway they're all employed by Cobra and the like, earn on commission only and a very big chunk (30% upwards) doesn't go to charity. However it must work for the charities or they wouldn't do it! In a way it's just the same as the days when you see all the students dressed up raising money for chairities in town, they're only doing it as they are officially advised it will look good on their cv's. Give your money to the poppy guys when they're there as that's direct to charity.

AnonymousApril 17th 2009.

I don't understand this... If you want to give to charity then give to ones YOU choose on a planned basis and preferably with gift aid so the rest of us give with you. The charity 'seller' had exactly the right answer..." if approached, you smile, and say no thank you...., not today, and please excuse me must go." Never argue.... just say no thanks its not for me. But your conscience must be clear (hence the planned giving) so you don't feel guilty

AnonymousApril 17th 2009.

bulldog, now there was a game worthy of the playground. Sadly the world has changed, my nephews can't play it at school now, health and safety gone crazy i tell you, crazy

annaApril 17th 2009.

i remember giving my details to one of them, i think it was for marie curie, when i was called later i said i was interested in volunteering but not donating financially, she said thanks for my time and put down the phone - no help or direction for the volunteering - that is my free time i'd offered to give! psht.

Charitable JApril 17th 2009.

I would only gave to a charity for those charity workers who've been injured or insulted during the raising of charity.

espionagemanchester.comApril 17th 2009.

I avoid Market St by cutting down the streets that run closely parallel to it. Not so much because of the charity people, but just simply the crowds.

burt CodeineApril 17th 2009.

I think we called Bulldog Red Rover for some reason?!The phone trick works very well...and yes the charity girls are rather enticing, but it does feel a little like doorstep selling which I also abhor (get a no solicitation sticker). We've given dozens of bin liner bags full of clothes to charity shops over the past couple of months which is our way of giving (and it's our choice rather than some 'high powered/going forward Charity PLC' attempting to make the decision for you).

HanibalApril 17th 2009.

This one works a treat, and only takes around 10 minutes to perfect. Basically you just need to learn how to do the Hanibal Lector 'slither' noise, and drop it whenever they approach you. The way to do it is as they approach from the side with their corny lines, continue looking straight ahead until they come within about 4 ft of you. Once they have invaded your personal space you then need to slowly turn your head, stop walking, look them up and down and then slither. I tried it once and the guy peed his pants. Sure if we all do this then we would soon have ridded ourselves of these 'late makers'.

AnonymousApril 17th 2009.

argh, when living and working in the City Centre Charity fundraisers made my walk home hell... I too used to pretend i was on the phone, or running for a train - i couldn't cope with the guilt! My flatmate ended up coming home one day having signed up to Water Aid "cos he had a scottish acent."I give to charity, and i don't want to be bullied into it. I was longing for one of them to ask me on the day i got made redudant, but it was as if they knew and stayed well clear....

GedApril 17th 2009.

These people are a plague of Manchester. Its a different charity almost every week so even if you sign up with one as you've been accosted, emotionally blackmailed and bullied into it, the next week you have another smarmy, over confident idiot harrassing you on your dinner hour. If people want to give to charity, they can do so off there own backs (as i already do). Get rid of these cockroaches immediately.

snottyApril 17th 2009.

I know we should be more charitable but having it thrust upon us when we are going about our day to day tasks it's just out of order. If I want to give to charity I will do but under my own steam not because I am being bullied into it. Not only are these people plaguing market street I even had a group of them turning up on my door step which just shocked me - these people are driving me away from giving to charity not wanting to donate as it makes me very angry indeed.

AnonymousApril 17th 2009.

Donate to the little local charities quietly doing good work around the city, not these national "big guns" with their chuggers and highly-paid management...

BeeApril 17th 2009.

Ban them all! They are so awful. I am fed up of them not taking a polite 'no thanks' for an answer and chasing me down the street accusing me of being heartless. Get washed and get a proper job, keep your dazzling personality and your dreadlocks away from me!

Didsbury GirlApril 17th 2009.

I agree! I have signed up in the past, even though I was on minimum wage and trying to make ends meet, I ended up having to cancel the Direct Debit! I now give to Charities that I choose, and usually just give the market street pushers the brush off. But it's still not a nice interruption, and makes me avoid that road - And also the shops along it. Ill shop where I don't get hassled!

M30April 17th 2009.

espionagemanchester is right, it can be so much easier to cut down the side of the Bradford & Bingley and down the side streets as a quick way of going through the city centre. Unfortunately the chuggers have formed a human shield around Victoria Station, where I'm accosted every day by outsourced collectors for the Red Cross, Amnesty, Oxfam, the Radcliffe Lesbian & Gay Switchboard etc etc etc. Ban them. Giving to charity should be something that people choose to do, as opposed to being bullied into it. Plus there are also the issues around big charities which have lots and lots of people on £50,000+ salaries on their payroll. I also have an issue with Oxfam because they refuse to take clothes unless they are brand new, coupled with their ridiculously high prices and extremely rude staff at their Chorlton branch. Supporting a local charity that operates at grass-roots level is much more important.

WayneApril 17th 2009.

Give them a break, they're earning a decent crust

foolish apeApril 17th 2009.

Wayne, wouldn't you prefer to give directly, or to volunteers?

TomApril 17th 2009.

I once got accosted by a lovely girl in a red t-shirt. We chatted, got talking, took her out. Nice night. I managed to make a very good donation that was mutually satisfying.

foolish apeApril 17th 2009.

That sounds very charitable of you Tom, which charity was it?!

TomApril 17th 2009.

It was something to do with animals I believe. I wasn't really listening. The girl was a brunette, 24, slendour, beautiful dark eyes. I'll save on the name. She was charitable to me just that once. Good times.

foolish apeApril 17th 2009.

Oh sorry Tom, I thought you meant you'd gotten yourself a hooker.

Ali McGowanApril 17th 2009.

I like the women selling Lucky Heather. So utterly, utterly charming. No, really. The last woman who harassed me was lucky that I did not hide her lucky heather up her bottom.

east lancsApril 17th 2009.

Ali that reminds me about this fortune teller who bothered us; "you're not very good are you?" I said, "how would you know?" she asked. I just smiled and walked off and hoped she got it :o)

joyfulApril 17th 2009.

if I want to donate to charity then I will make a one off cash donation or set up a direct debit via their website but I'm certainately not giving my bank details to someone being paid up to £12 an hour and who probably doesn't care for the cause at all.

FlashmonkeyApril 17th 2009.

I like Chuggers, they richness and diversity to our otherwise dull and blande town centres. If you dont want to talk to them say 'no thanks'. Andy as for 'Bee' saying that they should get a 'proper job', I would be interested to know what you do for a living that gives you the right to decide what qualifies as 'proper' employment. Is it your sensible short haircut or your job as a data entry monkey for a faceless corporation. Give these guys a break, they are just trying to earn a living whilst doing something good, instead of sucking the earth dry. Most of them seem to genuinely give a crap and that is why they continue to subject themselves to the verbal abuse and disdainful glares that they get all day from ignorant nimby tight-fists, whose life is apparently so dull and devoid of meaning that they have to excercise thier authority over anyone who is in a position that causes them to look at them selves a liitle closer.

BeeApril 17th 2009.

Flashmonkey - I am a poorly paid advertising creative with long hair. I earn a lot less than these idiots reportedly do (and in MY opinion, work much harder) and begrudge them not taking no for an answer and trying to guilt-trip me into donating to charities I have no affinity for.

AnonymousApril 17th 2009.

Next time they stop you ask them if they donate to whatever charity they're asking you to sign up for, easiest way to undermine them as usually they don't give a penny :)

AnonymousApril 17th 2009.

Although they could just lie I suppose...

hmmmApril 17th 2009.

i have a DD to oxfam so i can say no to these people without guilt and walk on by......i'll tell you what 'grinds my gears' though....its when you are sitting in the pub and they come and ask you for money...twice in 3 nights over the last couple of weeks...you can't escape and they know it....REALLY ANNOYING

CastlefieldApril 17th 2009.

Tell you what, go to http://www.allroadsleadtoparis.co.uk and sponsor a very good cause. Every single penny raised goes direct to the charity. Thanks all!

DescartesApril 17th 2009.

Donations don't go towards any 5* hotels along the way do they?

castlefieldApril 17th 2009.

No! All costs are being covered by the company we work for, and the hotels are not great! Every penny donated goes DIRECT to the hospice. Thanks

DescartesApril 17th 2009.

Sorry castlefield, cheap shot but made me laugh a bit to myself. Good luck with the trip, sounds pretty mighty!

BenApril 17th 2009.

I love all the comments about how people feel genuinely bullied when they try to stop you. Nothing could be further from the truth - most these guys wouldn't say boo to a goose and in my experience, the only time they're ever rude is when people are hideously patronising or just plain rude. When I did the "where do you get your hair done thing" one thing was evident - rude people CANNOT accept retaliation. If I so much as sniggered at they way they'd been with me they went off on one. Manners don't cost a penny, and it's really not difficult to just smile and say no thanks. If you can't so much as find the back bone to do that - then you really should avoid big cities

emma graceApril 17th 2009.

I really don't see why people get so worked up about it. Say no thanks, keep walking, keep smiling and say you're late for something or other. Alternatively stick your ipod on or, worst comes to worst, pretend to be on the phone! There's no need to get so angry is there really, chill out!

NatalieApril 17th 2009.

I'm sorry but these people get paid up to £10 an hour to do this job. If they really cared about the charity they were working for then they would donate their time for free. It annoys me that i give so much of my time up to causes that i believe in and to be a benefit yet i still get hassled to give money to a charity who pays people to collect money for them and sign people up. I may aswell just give my money straight to the person hounding me on the street. Some of the people i work with on charity projects devote their whole life to these causes and have never been paid a penny for it. However they have never asked me for a penny, just some of my spare time in order to help them out.

emma graceApril 17th 2009.

The fact is though, more money is going to charity than there would be if these people weren't doing this job. It's like the Comic Relief argument all over again...

BenApril 17th 2009.

Oh come on, lets be realistic - who here actually REALLY cares about the work they do over the money they get paid? And I wish people would stop throwing the word "harassed." Harassment is illegal and far more serious than a few friendly people simply going "moment of your time please sir"

BenApril 17th 2009.

Oh come on, lets be realistic - who here actually REALLY cares about the work they do over the money they get paid? And I wish people would stop throwing the word "harassed." Harassment is illegal and far more serious than a few friendly people simply going "moment of your time please sir"

emma graceApril 17th 2009.

exactly ben...

BenApril 17th 2009.

I'm so glad I've done a similar job to be honest - it really teaches you a lot about the public in general

foolish apeApril 17th 2009.

Ben, maybe in your experience, but plenty of folk DO feel intimidated and (unjustly) guilt-tripped...

BenApril 17th 2009.

Call me stupid, but I always thought the only way a person can be guilt tripped is if there's something to feel guilty about in the first place...

emma graceApril 17th 2009.

Oh come on, intimidated??? I really don't see what's intimidating about them. It's not like one of the Kray twins is walking up to you demanding money! They are wearing brightly coloured overalls, a massive smile and say please and thank you AND more often than not, ask if you're having a nice day?!?!?!

BenApril 17th 2009.

If anything, a lot of these negative comments have just gone to re-inforce my opinion that people can't stand the idea that there are actually people out there happy enough in their own skin to spend their day's doing something they care about for good money whilst the rest of the world sits at a desk (chatting on mancon-ha). And people hate to feel guilty, to be informed about issues relating to charity - ignorance is bliss after all

DigApril 17th 2009.

I'm amazed so many people feel guilty or intimidated or harrassed. Are you so unsure of yourselves you can't engage a charity worker and politely refuse their request or listen to their cause to see if you are interested in donating? You have the choice, the power. It's your money, you decide what to do with it.

BenApril 17th 2009.

Thank you Dig! Exactly the point I was getting at. It amazes me that in the world as it is, people find the energy to complain about such trivial subjects

LizApril 17th 2009.

I think the word harrassment might be a bit strong but it verges on that sometimes. I work in Piccadilly Gardens and live in the Northern Quarter, I literally get pestered atleast three times a day. I don't feel guilty ignoring them because I give to the charities I have put thought into, not just been pestered into. I don't think it is fair that I have to get stressed out trying to dodge them every morning, lunch and evening. As I am a young woman I seem to be deemed as their target audience because I can see them eyeing me up well before they jump in my way with their overly used opening gambits (do they think I think they genuinely care where I get my hair cut?!).People who don't get pestered daily might think that other people are overreacting and should just ignore them but if I say 'not today' they should respect that and not follow me up the street, or even grab my arm which is totally unacceptable! Yes people can be rude to them but I think they're rude, just because they're cheery doesn't mean they're not.

BenApril 17th 2009.

Stressful? Having someone steal your wallet from your pocket is stressful, a cash machine eating your card is stressful...being spoken to by someone for all of a second and giving them a polite smile is not stressful...

AnonymousApril 17th 2009.

I call walking through St Anne's Square running the gauntlet - I know they have to get money from somewhere, but I am constantly sick and tired of being asked to stop and talk. It always happens on my way home from work, after not being able to have a break all day, feeling tired and just wanting to get home. I'm afraid I have no time for these people. I support Charities and help out with their fundraisers so don't feel guilty. I just wish they'd leave me alone - maybe there's a sign I could wear saying "I already give to Charity - don't ask for more!"

DigApril 18th 2009.

I'm sure the people on here complaining about the charity workers are the same people who look terrified when they walk into my showroom. Some people won't even look at you when they speak to you. They walk away saying 'I'm ok, I'm just looking' or even worse, pretend they haven't seen or heard you! 2 minutes later they have a thousand questions anyway! I must thank those people for the entertainment they provide. The terror in their eyes is hilarious.

kieranApril 18th 2009.

I absolutely detest these little street urchins, the least most charitable, most money hungry little gutter rats on what is already a disgraceful street in all respects!

DigApril 18th 2009.

I have 2 words for the people who want to be left alone by the charity workers, 'Water pistol'.

BenApril 18th 2009.

Kieran - whilst I applaud your obvious grasp for the use of adjectives, let me ask you this - what in god's name is wrong with being money hungry?

LizApril 18th 2009.

Ben, to me not being able to walk to work/home/the shop without being pestered is stressful. Yes it might not be upthere with being mugged but I still feel stressed out by it. I have absolutely no issue with people such as Big Issue sellers because when you say no thanks, they accept that. From my extensive chugger experience they don't. If I was stopped once or twice a week then I would most likely share a lot of your opinions but unfortunately I'm not. Some of the 'chill out! If u hate chuggers you hate everyone' type comments just aren't accurate. If you want the time or directions then that's fine with me, I'll stop and spend ten minutes telling you. But if I'm in a rush somewhere and said sorry I don't have the time I don't think they'd chase me up the street.If people selling credit cards acted like chuggers do then there'd be no argument on whether they should be banned or not. Just because it's for charity doesn't make it ok. Especially when it takes a long time for any of your money to make it to the charity.

Jo MiddletonApril 18th 2009.

They are annoying and I must admit to pretending to be on the phone to avoid being collared, however on the odd occassions I have been stopped I just politely and firmly tell them that I am not in a position to donate at the moment and smile and leave it at that. I don't feel there is ever a need to be rude.

Linda - DidsburyApril 18th 2009.

I take part in a fancy-dress charity truck pull once a year. It's real hard work but fun and rewarding. Last time we raised £10k for Francis House. I think the odd bit of change is fine but bank details.... absolutely not!

LauraApril 18th 2009.

I've no objections to people collecting cash or bank account details for charity. That's mainly because I politely say no and walk away. If they start harasing me they get short shrift.What I object to are the ones selling fake rag mags or raffle tickets for some unnamed charity. Ask them for their council permit and they're stuck. they are the ones who get aggressive, in my experience, and they should be dealt with severely.And I speak as someone who regulary, in student days, took to the streets here and up and down the UK raising money for various charities (without getting paid, I might add!).

kershanApril 18th 2009.

The other week I was accosted INSIDE Oxford Rd Station, whilst clearly running for a train! Of all the places to set up a pitch, this surelay has to be the stupidest. Or the most genius. I can't decide. But yes, chuggers are a pain, especially the ones who don't take no for an answer. Or the ones whose openig salvo goes something like "Do you care about [insert something worthy]?" because the cunning buggers have got you in a no-win situation there. Ban them? Of course not. If we went round banning everything that was irritating to some people, we'd live in a vacuum, and I for one think that would suck.

LauraApril 18th 2009.

(oh and i agree, you're pretty daft if you give out your bank details to a stranger on the street!)

JenniferApril 18th 2009.

I'm all for charidee, I give to 2 animal charities and Cancer Research on a monthly basis and have done for 10 years. When I'm stopped (sometimes several times over one lunch hour) I always politely inform them that I already give but have on a number of occasions still been asked to "give a little more". I think giving to three is pretty decent of me as it is, if I could afford to give more I would, without the need of street fundraisers but being asked to give up one of those I give to now (which has happened a number of times) in favour of a kids charity or Help the Aged I find is totally out of order. I chose to support charities I personally feel passionate about. I often wonder if those who stop me give to any of these charities that they are so passionate about?!

M30April 18th 2009.

It's not a "Red Cross Worker" who's doing the hassling though, is it? It's someone earning £10 employed by a private profit-making company.

BenApril 18th 2009.

The way some people are going on, I imagine any tourist would be expecting Market Street to be a huge free for all, full of angry looking charity workers sprinting after helpless "suits," whilst police run around attempting to arrest as many people as possible on suspicion of harassment!

LauraApril 18th 2009.

The fundraisers do also have a dual purpose of raising awareness of the work of the charities. Give them a chance - they're earning a meagre living doing something worthwhile - more than most of us do!

BenApril 18th 2009.

Where has this issue of them being paid £10 an hour cropped up from? God forbid should they ever want to earn a decent living

emma graceApril 18th 2009.

Exactly Laura...but apparently whatever they get paid is too much. According to some, they should work for free, and live on thin air.

foolish apeApril 18th 2009.

The Red Cross guys standing in the doorway of Sommerfield today are amongst the worst I've encountered. Wait until there's a lull in the doorway then try to get through without being severely patronised. They're clearly targetting women today by the way. Truly horrible stuff... "y'all right darlin'? can you spare a boy a minute?" F*** off.

foolish apeApril 18th 2009.

Anyway, if it's a UK charity for UK people, it's merely doing the job the government should be doing with our taxes anyway... just a thought...

BenApril 18th 2009.

To be fair, they sound like unpleasant people in general regardless of what job they do

M30April 18th 2009.

Personally I would feel better by donating to a volunteer than someone who chooses Chugging as a career. Corporate Charities don't sit well with me.

EllieApril 18th 2009.

It's a complete lie that they don't take money. It takes up to a year for the cost of employing the chugger to be paid off to the agency before the charity you're donating to starts to see any money. It has to be the worst way to donate and the chuggers are just getting pernicious. I've been hassled by a few who, when ignored, get quite rude. Ban them and donate direct.

BenApril 18th 2009.

Surely plainly ignoring a person is far ruder than whatever they might say back. If someone ignored me regardless of who it was I'm pretty sure I'd be pretty miffed.

EllieApril 18th 2009.

As someone selling, it shouldn't be offensive if someone chooses to ignore you. When saying 'no thanks' leads to being hassled and pursued up market street, I'm no longer willing to respond.

GavApril 18th 2009.

thank you manc conf for addressing this new blight on the streets of manchester. getting mugged by charity beggars is ruining every ramble round town. And they are always middle class student tw*ts whio think being 'wacky' will make you part with your hard earned rather than dispossess them of their charidee collection tin. I saw two crusty student loan dodgers, with daddy's-funding-our-being irritating-charity-beggar barstools' accents do stupid little jigs whenever someone approached. My proudest moment is when walking up market street at speed one jumped in front of me and i mowed them down, leaving them face down still chuntering on about saving dolphins or summat. This evil menace must be stopped. let's start a campaign. I may dress as a lion and paw people walking past to gain money for this campign. Not.

BenApril 18th 2009.

Actually Ellie, I think you'll find that nobody likes being ignored, and just because you're selling, you shouldn't have to expect it to happen. It's called common courtesy

EllieApril 18th 2009.

Ben what part of 'When saying 'no thanks' leads to being hassled and pursued up market street' do you not understand? Manners cost nothing and that applies to the chuggers as much as anyone.

kieranApril 18th 2009.

When one in Oxford Road Train station recently told me "but I am trying to give you something for free" when I said "Im not interested thank you", I had to politely remind her that I had already stated that "I was not interested".Offering me something for free? That's just lying.Nothing worng with being money motivated ben if that's your choice however been forced in my face when not required is not acceptabe. Ban them immediately.

Michele HApril 18th 2009.

What about nice people shaking old fashioned tins for local causes? St Ann's Hospice holds an annual Sunflower Collection in the city centre and is looking for volunteers to help out for a few hours on either 5th or 6th June if anyone can spare a little time - all money goes direct to St Ann's Hospice and you get to wear a lovely St Ann's sunnyflower t-shirt and enjoy refreshments from their marquee in St Ann's Square. Charity begins at home and all that so visit their website if you think you can help!

ChodukApril 18th 2009.

Nuke 'em from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

AnonymousApril 18th 2009.

I work in St Ann's Square so every lunch and every time I am walking back to Victoria Station to get my train home I get harrassed. If people are wanting to donate to charities then they will in their own time, especially in the current economic market.

ancoats girlApril 18th 2009.

It's not just Market Street. Now Piccadilly Gardens is taken over with workers in front of Somerfield and the patch in front of Burger King. I work for a charity so I know how tight funding is generally for the voluntary sector, but I too find it stressful to play dodgeball on my lunchhour. I only get half an hour and most of that is spent running around doing errands! (p.s. This charity has not yet resorted to raising funds in this way, though they do a bit of door to door. Which is also quite stressful for some people I'm sure.)

SwailesyApril 18th 2009.

I'm lucky enough to count many of these charity fundraisers as friends. In response to the comments claiming that they don't even care about the causes they are fundraising for: I can assure you that every one of them that I know (about a dozen) does genuinely care about the charity and the overwhelming majority also donate to the cause. In response to the comments expressing outrage at the fact that they are paid (or suggesting they give all their wages to charity): that is ridiculous, this is their job. In response to those saying they are harassed: Not once, after politely saying 'no thank you' and continuing walking, have I been harassed. Ged: these 'smarmy over-confident cockroaches' are good people doing their jobs and raising money for charity which otherwise wouldn't be raised. You on the other hand, sound like a c**t.

emma graceApril 18th 2009.

You wouldn't get me staning in the wind and rain being ignored and insulted by strangers all day for any cause that I didn't give a sh1t about...£10 an hour or not

RachellApril 18th 2009.

Charity fundraisers to an excellent job, stop moaning about them and let them get on with their valuable work!!!

DigApril 18th 2009.

Being a Scouser I can't say I've had the pleasure of Market Street Chuggers. It does sound entertaining though. I think I might sit there, have my lunch and watch the entertainment one day. Fortunately, or unfortunately Chuggers aren't an issue in Liverpool City Centre. Yet.

EloiseApril 18th 2009.

Regardless of how committed/lovely/salt of the earth these people are if you are as unfortunate as I am and have to walk thru St Anns Square, Market Street and Picc at least twice a day as I do you can also add tiresome to that. And whilst some do leave you alone once you politely say no thank you quite a number dont and proceed to chase you up the road. I think they should be limited in numbers/areas/days so I and others like me can occasionally get a day off. And its no-ones business what you give btw, and you shouldnt feel the need to qualify yourselves by pointing out that you do give. My aunt is a full-time charity fundraiser and has been for many years, she says you get nowhere by giving up at 'no thank you'. I rest my (very heavy brief)case.

foolish apeApril 18th 2009.

Swailesy, I have honestly been "hassled" by this lot - especially if I'm in a suit. I'm a decent chap by default, surely my cheery "sorry but no thanks" should prevent me being followed with "humorous" rejoinders?

AnonymousApril 18th 2009.

All of this should be stopped including Big Issue sellers.

hazelApril 18th 2009.

Tell you who 'should' be barred from Market St; those leftie loonies of the champagne socialist SWP who antagonise people trying to go about their business. Don't these dreamers realise that Communism is dead, and has reduced Cuba to a backward slum...as it has everywhere else it festered! Go home and have a wash and let us do our shopping in peace.

EloiseApril 18th 2009.

I probably should've put a link to the charity my aunt works for so all of you that feel guilty can give to a good local charity doing valuable work in the area, but then she'd have no work to do would she:))

CastlefieldApril 18th 2009.

Totally agreed with Hazel! I hate the socialist worker lefties.

AnonymousApril 18th 2009.

As someone who works full time for a local charity, we don't use street fundraisers ourselves and personally I would always encourage people to donate direct to the charity where possible. However, for all the people that would do this, there are many more who would never donate to charity unless approached by the street fundraisers. I think a total ban would deprive charities of a vital source of potential income for the work they do.

TanyaApril 18th 2009.

I think it is unfair to be harassed and i have been cleverly target a few times in piccadilly. I am an activist myself and feel that if people are geniune in their cause for raising funds then they shouldnt and wouldnt "harass" anyone. I do think fundraisers can go overboard, but you can only excuse this if its a genuine passion from the heart, and any other excuse is surely not acceptable nor plaudible.

BJApril 18th 2009.

As a local fundraisier for the Christie hospital, I ask that our street collectors are not tarred with the same brush as the professonals. We are not even allowed to shake the collection box or ask directly for money and all cash taken goes directly to the charity. There is certainly no remuneration involved. If there were to be a blanket ban, genuine charities would lose a valuable source of much needed income.

marshaluanApril 18th 2009.

The charity worksers are'nt so bad. The ones who should be banned are the ambulance chasers 'Have you recently been injured in an accident madam?' 'No but if you'd like to be injured in an accident it can be arranged!'

CheApril 18th 2009.

Please ban the orrible little buggers! They're like a disease. They try to manipulate people into donating money they don't have, not out of belief in the charity but out of desire to line their own pockets. I don't know how the sleep at night to be honest. It's not true that a smile and "no thanks" will get rid of them, I have been literally chased down the street. Now I sometimes chat along with them so they know how it feels to have their time wasted! They can't be reasoned with either - one (Friends of the Earth, who claimed to be employed directly by the charity not an agency) was told I had just quit my job and had no income (no I wasn't lying!). Still he persisted and I said I couldn't afford to donate but that I did my bit for the environment because I lived a very low carbon lifestyle, using renewable electricity, choosing not to own a car etc. He went "well you're really not doing much are you. I'll put you down for £20 a month." Made my blood boil! Had I given in for a quiet life the direct debits would have bounced and I'd have been charged a fortune. Not only do I choose how and when to give to charity but I try to avoid donating to the ones that employ these snakes.

DigApril 18th 2009.

I repeat, 'water pistol'.

NickApril 18th 2009.

I work in town so get harrassed by these perma-grinned prats at least three times a day. While I do donate to charity, I make a point of not donating to any charity that uses chuggers - and I have cancelled standing orders for this reason. They are a menace.

SamanthaApril 18th 2009.

What about the homeless guy that always asks for 11p? It's ALWAYS 11p. No more, no less.

BobskiApril 18th 2009.

One of the best ways to watch them squirm, is to actually ask them about the charity they are promoting, what's it's annual turnover from collections , what does it actually fund etc etc ......watch the vacant look when they know toss all about what they are asking you to give a chunk of your wages too !!!

BobApril 18th 2009.

I love the homeless guy who asks for a quid because he only drinks "Earl Grey" ....absolute classic !!

BApril 18th 2009.

I love the Heather scrote ....."Buy my heather it will bring you luck ..." ...If it's so lucky why is the old boot hanging round on Mkt St .....use it for yourself you silly old sod !!!

harrassed city residentApril 18th 2009.

They are so annoying, one time they used to just keep to Market street, they have now spread their coverage to Piccadilly Gardens, St. Anns Square and New Cathedral Street. I feel like I can't walk around my own city without being approached by these parasites, this might be a strong word for them but they seem to be everywhere and can't get rid of them!I think if somebody wants to give to charity then that is their personal choice and individuals can do this by advertisements in magazines, websites etc or even if these 'charity workers' just handed out leaflets instead with the information on them on how to donate to a specific charity.Maybe its about time Cityco and MCC put a stop to these 'workers' or at least limit the amount of times that they are allowed to roam the streets of our city and leave us residents, workers and visitors of this city in peace

NuApril 18th 2009.

Not on commission? Rubbish. These souless excuses harrass and abuse people just trying to go about a normal working day. I have a friend who has panic attacks due to harassment from charity muggers, and both my sister and I have to RUN by the ones in Piccadilly gardens just to get home from work in peace simply because we're not stupid enough to part with our details to these wasters. Charities should be embarrassed to use the horrible things.

championApril 18th 2009.

I'd rather have a chugger than the neo-fascist evangelist tossers who sing about Jeeesaaaaarrs in Piccadilly Sq and tell us condoms won't save us from hell - there ought to be a law

JizmyApril 18th 2009.

Hmmm... The likes of you or I having 30 seconds of our "easy life" every day taken away from us, or a lifetime of starvation/cruelty/abuse etc for our counterparts in other countries/abused children - the list could go on...? Would you sickos seriously have these people banned from our streets just to make our lives a little bit easier...? Get a grip Manchester

BeeApril 18th 2009.

Gosh. We're all certainly impassioned by this topic..... but it looks like most of the anti-chugger crew (myself included) are more against the volume of them and tactics they use to approach people rather than their existence. Can their numbers / locations not be more restricted, can they somehow be less imposing or confrontational?

bothered daily by these idiots!April 18th 2009.

i get approached daily as i have to run the gaunlet that market st has become! i would ban these people in a second. if people want to give to charity they will. people should not be harrassed every day on their way home from a hard day's work. i find myself having to change my path just to dodge the annoying idiots. the council should definitly ban them! they may think they are doing some good but when you are harrassed on a daily basis it really gets too much

forever manchesterApril 19th 2009.

visit http://www.forevermanchester.comand put something back into your community

championApril 19th 2009.

foolish ape - i just did

Didsbury GirlApril 19th 2009.

How about the homeless Guy who asks if you can spare £10,000?I got accosted the other day on Oxford Road opposite Paramount and Varsity - He was actually lurking outside an office entrance waiting to catch people at the end of the working day! Where will they be next? Lets get a "spotted!" going.Also, yes, I agree with The evangelists on Market Street, they REALLY boil my blood. I must give off an athiest vibe though as they never seem to approach me.

BenApril 19th 2009.

Are the evangelist ones the people that sing and rap etc?

DanApril 19th 2009.

What an odd poll. They're so easy to politely avoid if you want to... 'late for a bus', 'meeting a mate', 'on my way back to work' etc etc. If you're too shy/polite to be evaise then who's to blame for lacking the balls to say no? Not them.

east lancsApril 19th 2009.

Dan, I think the sheer volume of complaints in this discussion kind of implies that they're ARE a problem. Not all, but some. The Red Cross ones in Somerfield at the mo are a reet pain in'arse...

JhoApril 19th 2009.

I don't know what the fuss is about. I just say a polite "no thanks" and carry on walking, that's it. I've never had what I would call any sort of problem with them, and I walk through Market Street/Picadilly Gardens Monday through to Friday. Saying that, there ARE a large number of them about now.

Reply to Dan and JhoApril 19th 2009.

With all due respect Dan and Jho, why should I have to deal with 1-10 charity people a day asking me for my money. I have no problem saying no politely. They're a pain in the arse. There are other ways of collecting money. Cystic Fibrosis do it well.

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