A town council chamber
Eskilstuna muncipality's general assembly. Credit: Annizeth Åberg/Sveriges Radio.

Eskilstuna votes to require beggars to have permits

1:13 min

A local city council has voted to demand permits for begging in the town centre, and this move is being watched by many other politicians in Sweden who want to limit or stop begging.

Jimmy Jansson from the Social Democrat party is the chair of the Eskilstuna city board. He tells Swedish Radio the move is about making sure that people who are begging have to come into contact with the authorities. He says this will allow police and social services to see whether the people begging should be offered help, or deported from Sweden. Much of the begging in Sweden in recent times is by groups of people from the Roma minority in eastern EU countries like Romania.

The permit system would mean a beggar would have to get approved each day, and pay a fee of 150 kronor. But although it was voted through by the Social Democrat, Center and Moderate Party government of Eskilstuna, the permit system will be assessed to see whether it is legal, before it comes into effect.


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