Metal spikes to prevent rough sleepers placed outside a London housing complex have caused a storm online with some comparing them to pigeon deterrents.
— TheSchizoPodcaster (@ukschizophrenic) June 7, 2014
Residents of the apartment block on Southwark Bridge Road say they appeared shortly after a homeless person had been sleeping there.
One told the Telegraph: "There was a homeless man asleep there about six weeks ago.
"Then about two weeks ago all of a sudden studs were put up outside.
"I presume it is to deter homeless people from sleeping there."
— Sean Dixon (@PowerfulChicken) June 8, 2014
Another resident, Emi Takehara told Sky News: "I feel really uncomfortable having these spikes in front of my home. It's like treating these homeless people like animals."
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Katharine Sacks-Jones, head of policy and campaigns at Crisis, said: "It is a scandal that anyone should sleep on the streets in 21st century Britain.
"Yet over the last three years rough sleeping has risen steeply across the country and by a massive 75% in London.
"Behind these numbers are real people struggling with a lack of housing, cuts to benefits and cuts to homelessness services to help them rebuild their lives.
"They might have suffered a relationship breakdown, a bereavement or domestic abuse. They deserve better than to be moved on to the next doorway along the street.
"We will never tackle rough sleeping with studs in the pavement. Instead we must deal with the causes."