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Two Canadian tourists have vowed never to return to Glasgow following their treatment at the hands of the city's litter enforcement officers. Mr and Mrs Turner from Ontario have decided to stop their regular visits to the city after Mrs Turner was issued an on-the-spot fine of 100 for dropping a cigarette end in a street already littered by cigarette butts.

Mr Turner was so incensed by the conduct of the officers (whom Mrs Turner mistakingly assumed were police officers) that he wrote a letter to the Evening Times complaining about the treatment of his wife.

In the letter, Mr Turner complained that his wife, instead of being given a warning, had been treated as if she had committed a serious crime. Mr Turner also complained that the actions of the officers had tarnished the image of the city after his wife had been forced to produce her passport and other identification in a busy street.

One subsequent Evening Times' reader expressed dismay at the treatment of Mrs Turner, complaining that the Clean Glasgow enforcement officers had made him "embarrassed to be a Glaswegian". The reader also complained that the litter enforcement officers "are building a poor reputation for picking on easy targets and not the more blatant litter louts, groups of neds, and drunks".

Glasgow City Council launched its 4m Clean Glasgow campaign in 2007. The programme was spearheaded by former council chief, Steven Purcell, who claimed at the time that the aim of the campaign was to make Glasgow "the cleanest city in the world". Despite some marginal improvements, a Keep Scotland Beautiful report published earlier this year found that Glasgow still ranked below the Scottish average for cleanliness.

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Typical. Give them a wee bit of authority and they think they're god. Its things like this that gets the rest of us a bad name. mad.gif Mary
These guys should ply their craft at the Royal Hospital for Sick Children at Yorkhill. Always folk hanging about smoking - they seem oblivious to the signs prohibiting smoking on hospital grounds illustrated with pictures of kids with cancer. These smokers definitely deserve 100 fines.
i believe that the enforcement officers overreacted , speaking for myself not knowing the laws of Scotland's towns , or even my own town where i live here in Ojai calif. i want to see my town clean , so when i see a violator , i either get there car lic,. number an report it to the local police dept. if caught they receive a warning , the next time they receive a ticket .my opinion, clarence
Perhaps a warning would have been in order, seeing they were not from Glasgow
Mind you would they have thrown their butts away in there home town?
Bye for now, norrie
mad.gif That's exactly why some of us don't still live there!

If not we'd be in England, London.

Should be a follow up to get this couple their cash back, they most probably look'd like tourist, soft spot target, these guy's are obviously waster's in the otherwise decent and forgiving weegies society in our home land.

Will most likely lose the job in a few week's anyway and back on the dole and spliff's all day long laughing at wat they got up 2, with the one and only job they probably will ever have.

They know if they'd stopped any of the young team they wold get their head kicked in, and trying it on a weggie drunk would only make him wet himself and tell you where to shove

Spineless coward probably not even local !!!!!
Isn't capital punishment an option for litter bugs anymore?

Crewsy Fixer
Im not a litterer and frown upon littering, but I frown more on the Litter Police, its a shameful easy target for revenue gathering. I remember when the Evening Times published several pages of the names and addresses of people, who had been caught littering, under the headline of These Louts are Costing us 16 million ( the city's annual clean up bill).
Plain Jane
Here Goes - second attempt at answering - Just to say that we attended the Merchant City festival on Saturday and apart from having a brilliant day out, we were pleasantly surprised at the the absence of litter - we took it that it was all
due to good organisation, but maybe it was the work of the jobsworths who were handing out the 100 fines! cool.gif
tongue.gif nae wunner ah dont live in the city, wie aw this crap fer drappin a cigarette butt ,dont smoke cigarettes anymerr,when ah've been in the city seen people on thir teabreak ootside offices shops etc in groups , where they used tae smoke wan relaxed ciggie in the T room on thir 10 minute brekk they now smoke two in 10 minutes, aw this is gettin outta hand
whits next "FART POLICE"? mel gibson get a life m8 tongue.gif
Plain Jane
Oops sorry about that - must do better. sad.gif

GG: no problem, I've edited!
I think a warning would have been fine in this case,however I have visited Glasgow many times and been blown away by the garbage. So it would be nice to see it cleaned up.If this ever happened the locals would have respect for their city and keep it clean.I love the idea I bet most Glaswegians want this also.
I hate litter louts, but a warning would have been enough in this case. The enforcers don't understand COMMON SENSE.
Its one helluva addiction often fatal and imposed on innocent others often too.
The fine of 100 pounds is in order, you see the nicotine addicts rarely I have noticed consider those non smokers around them.
Just my opinion! rolleyes.gif
I'm sure this woman will never toss another butt in the wrong place, a warning wouldn't have had the same impact!
Can anyone tell me how much you get fined if you are the leader of the council and get caught snorting Cocaine ?
glasgow lass
O' 100 pounds , that would hurt! But the law is the law.
I don't know if Ontario has a law regarding littering with dog ends
but you can be assured , that if there is a law the "criminal "would be given a warning.
Should'nt be smoking anyway ......

You would think that with all those 100 dollars on the spot fines being
dished out , surley there would be enough money to pay for the street clean-up.
We elect em, we gotta live with what they dish out.

Crap in, you get crap out, diffinently applies to most ciities fathers here in the USA, WOW look at our Washington DC talk about crap In!

Here in Henrico Virginia the cops are eager to shoot.

But our streets still are unsafe to walk, so few butts abound on the

I'll be careful in Glasgow in October, 100 pounds is a bit heavy, that's $200US.


angel sed:You would think that with all those 100 dollars on the spot fines being
dished out , surley there would be enough money to pay for the street clean-up.

surely with todays technology we can invent a biodegradable filter?
problem sorted. what if yie smoke cigars ?dis that incur a fine as well since it is 100% organic material (rolled in leaf with no filter)??????
if winston churchill drapped a big cigar in the city wid the cooncil fine him ?NAW
Why not put ciggie bins on the lamposts as I've seen in the US?-the smoking nazis would have less to dig folks up about and mebbe they could hit the Glesga doos with 100 fines for crapping on the street!
QUOTE (glasgow lass @ 28th Jul 2011, 12:22am) *
O' 100 pounds , that would hurt! But the law is the law.

thats no law hen-it's just a cash generation scam by the cooncil-I got dug up for flicking the ash aff ma fag oot the window of my car!-Ford in their wisdom don't fit ashtrays any more to their motors! mad.gif
These days I live in Northern California, where the fine for littering (cigarette butts or otherwise) is a flat $1,000. Normally it's only imposed when the litter is thrown from a moving car, but I have no idea what percentage of the time anti-littering laws are enforced on pedestrians.
Whether in California or other countries, my experience has been that tourists tend to get off lightly when committing minor infractions unless the tourist (usually ably assisted by alcohol) decides to argue with or denigrate the officer.
Not having been back home to Glasgow for some time, I don't know the circumstances, but I find myself often in California cities thinking that there'd be fewer butts on the ground if there were a few ashtrays in busy shopping or entertainment districts.
glasgow lass
Hello Klingon, ciggy bins will just over flow like the very small trash bins that dont seem to get emptied regularly in Glasgow. Stop feeding the cooncil and quit smoking.
Of course common sense should prevail, a warning should have been
issued. Perhaps the Glasgow Council should be brought to task for not
giving proper training to the employees ie. council officers involved. I am sure that these employees have zero skills in how to be pleasant with
the public and still get the message across. The sad part about this case is
that 2 empoyees think they are policemen, I am sure that Glasgow Police
would have dealt with these tourists in a more congenial manner. It seems to me that Scotland and Glasgow must have a vibrant economy when they have so little thought for the manner in which they conduct their civic affairs. In the long run so many lose out for the stupidity of people who should never have been placed in council employment.

Unfortunately I do not believe that much will change in Glasgow unless the Glasgow people elect new councellors who are able to act 100% on behalf of the citizens and the wishes of the ratepayers.

Keep me posted as to how the officers are dealt with. !!!

Billy Gibson

PS. Born in Glasgow
Mary and I had just visited Basel Zoo (10 minutes over the Swiss border) yesterday and although there's absolutely no "No smoking" signs anywhere there wasn't a single cigarette butt to be seen on the ground at all. This made Mary a bit anxious about lighting up ... she certainly forbade me to ... until we noticed that at every seating bank there was a litter bin complete with ash tray.
I can understand the feelings of the Canadian visitors to Glasgow. A polite warning would have sufficed. Demanding identification in the form of producing a passport is just too much "little corporal" for me ... and we know what they grow up to be. rolleyes.gif
Why not turn the 4 million pounds into labour and pay someone to clean up the mess rather than pay someone to fine everyone. In Canada, we take pride in our cities and even though we come from all over the world our people learn that cleanliness is next to godliness. CLEAN IT UP or supply ashtrays on every corner....that's what I you expect the Turners to butt out their cirgarettes in their pockets.....and I can see now why Sir John A. Macdonald, Canada's first prime minister left Scotland if this is the kind of calibre of thinking that existed back then. biggrin.gif
Do you commit an offence if you are unaware the action you took was an offence?I dont think so therefore I suggest the butt busters could have used a wee bit discretion with the tourist butt tossers,pointed out what was what and issued a word of warning.Its a shame that some people have left Glasgow with a negative feeling.
Can anyone tell me how these people operate? What happens if a butt tosser refuses to give the butt buster his name and address or gives false partics? Do they arrest you?
I seem to recall that as far as litter is concerned if a person drops,for example a cig packet in a public place,he would be given the opportunity to pick it up and dispose of it,only if he failed to do so would the offence be complete.
I wonder if the Canadian butt tossers were asked to pick up the offending butts by the butt busters?
QUOTE (Jupiter @ 28th Jul 2011, 07:35am) *
Do you commit an offence if you are unaware the action you took was an offence?I dont think so

Whatever happened to " Ignorance of the law is no defence" ? rolleyes.gif
A warning would have sufficed ... HOWEVER ! decent citizens do not litter , so it makes you wonder about the person complaining. If this fine stops her being a grub, then at least the warden has achieved something.. Go home and litter your own streets lady . !
Bilbo,if you were unaware that there was a bye law in force and contravened it then I would suggest you would have a good defence.
Here in Corkerhill where there is a chidrens playpark,I'm fed up lifting up empty beer and spirit bottles that folk just throw away anywhere instead of 1 of the 5 litter bins.If these are left they get smashed and although police do chase them and pour out their drink that doesnt happen very often.There is also loads of cig butts lying where that have been so these so called Clean glasgow wardens should be having a look here
QUOTE (Jupiter @ 28th Jul 2011, 05:35am) *
Can anyone tell me how these people operate? What happens if a butt tosser refuses to give the butt buster his name and address or gives false partics? Do they arrest you?
I seem to recall that as far as litter is concerned if a person drops,for example a cig packet in a public place,he would be given the opportunity to pick it up and dispose of it,only if he failed to do so would the offence be complete.
I wonder if the Canadian butt tossers were asked to pick up the offending butts by the butt busters?

No, Jupiter, the litter enforcement officers are under strict instructions from their bosses that they should not give the alleged litterer the chance to pick up the cigarette butt to avoid a fine.

I've seen these guys (they are mostly male) in action many times and they act in a very abrupt manner, mostly, I think, because they want to get the individual's personal details before the (usually) cornered member of the public figures out the officers have no real powers. Anyone can simply refuse to give them any details and there is nothing they can do except call for police support. You can imagine how happy the police would be with that!

In my opinion, it's a very counter-productive situation. I've always believed that the money should be used to employ more street cleaners, in addition to having more bins.

The irony of this episode is that the leader of the council, who is ultimately responsible for the conduct of the officers, is also chairman of the city's tourist board. How's that for a potential conflict of interest?

GG,That is very interesting.On many occasions I came across minor litter offences(cig packs,cans etc) but I had the power in law to give the offender the chance to dispose of the litter legally.It was only if he refused would he then be reported to the PF and he usually got a warning letter.Im about to check the Litter Act.
Negotiate Now
I wonder how much authority these jobsworthies really have. What they could they do if anyone refused to pay? They have the power to give people fines but dropping a cigarette butt isn't really a criminal offence is it? I guess the uniform just scares people especially tourists who might think they are the Police or have the same powers. Does anyone know about this? It would be interesting to find out.
George Brown
My sympathies go with the tourists. Appreciating that the visitors may not be familiar with our local laws, a bit of diplomacy should have been applied, but then as regular visitors ?
I mildly wonder at how an instant fine is applied to someone with no permanent UK address, do these petty little dictators carry cash machines and reciept books about with them as well as cameras ?
If so, they obviously don't do much business otherwise one would expect to see them kitted out with little cash trolleys on tow.
I remember being stopped and asked by a tourist for directions in Argyle St when we were rudely interupted by one of those 'know all' indiividuals. As a 70year old Glaswegian I found his explanation incoherent and confusing, I just crept off.
We have so many clowns uniforns on the streets nowadays they run the risk of making a mockery of dedicated professionals.
There are far worse crimes than dropping litter surely? Do we want to live in a sterile empty city? This is surely a case of throwing the baby out with bath water. I thought that a friend of mine was once charged forty pounds for dropping a cigarette end in town, not one hundred. They don't half come up with some horrible ideas for making money. Yes, litter is a problem but it's wrong in my opinion to chase tourists away in an effort to keep the city clean and certainly does not reflect the attitude of the Glasgow people.
A warning would have quite adequately sufficed to anyone I feel.
George,Ive been having a wee look and it appears that you are issued with a fixed penalty notice giving you fourteen days to pay,so Id imagine if the tourist gave his address to the butt buster as,eg,10 High St Vancouver it would create a bit of an impasse because there would be a likliehood of the tourist would not pay.Interesting.
I think this was way over the top and a warning would have been more in line. While I dont agree with littering anywhere and of course in my home town of Glasgow in particular. I know that some people when given authority can turn into right little hitlers (police included). There is also the fact that chewing gum on the pavements is far worse and more costly to clean up. People are always going to drop rubbish and it would be better to stay on top of this with more city council refuse staff. Incidentally I wonder how much of the 100 fine will go towards this ,if any.
Terry Dunlop
6 fine would have sufficed the price of a packet of cigarettes.
I know its hard to take when you have been caught out , we all feel a bit stupid afterwards, in this case though being visitors to our shores a bit of common sense would have helped, i live in a town in the east of Scotland and we also have a large fine for dropping litter , on one occasion i saw a young mother with her baby in the pram being stopped in our shopping pedestrian precinct , she was being given an instant fine of 30, and while the community officer was writing out the fine , they were both nearly run over by a speeding cyclist , after the mother went away i asked the officer why she did not stop and fine the cyclist , she told me that although there are signs up in every entrance to the precinct, they were only advisory notices asking people not to cycle there and it was not possible to enforce it , whit a laugh, a tiny wee fag end 30 , for nearly getting injured nowt
QUOTE (Jupiter @ 28th Jul 2011, 10:06am) *
Bilbo,if you were unaware that there was a bye law in force and contravened it then I would suggest you would have a good defence.

I was under the impression that dropping litter was a criminal offence under the Environmental Protection Act 1990, and not just a matter for local bye-laws.
Kerry Gill
Typical. Hit a couple of smokers because they are an easy, and politically correct, target. Meanwhile, Glasgow must be one of the muckiest cities in Europe, or anywhere else, because of litter and general filth. Approaches, ie. roundabouts and junctions are virtual rubbish dumps. Vanmen and car drivers pull up and throw out their used drinks cans, coffee mugs, food packaging - a disgrace.
I think a warning would have been enough in there circumstances But it there's wan thing that gets up my nose is the amount of litter and dogs dirt that fouls oor streets I have spoke aboot this afore on another site, this is a thing that i drummed intae my weans fae early on never throw anything on the street put it in yer pocket if theres nae litter bin and take it hame.

This seems tae be rampant in glesga the wife and I spent many great wee holidays in different parts o England ranging fae Scarborough on the north east tae Torquay in the south west and the thing that used tae strike us first thing on coming back either fae alighting fae bus or train and making oor wey through the city centre was the amount o rubbish o aw sorts littered o ower the streets .

I live 8 minutes walk fae Silverburn centre and go doon fer the shopping twice a week the amount o dugs dirt is eye wattering my latest count was 28 wee messages littered o ower the place, these carry o sorts o germs which are harmful especially tae young children and tae my mind a bloody disgrace.

Hang them ah say hang them highhhhhhh ,lol
Plain Jane
QUOTE (Plain Jane @ 27th Jul 2011, 11:47pm) *
Oops sorry about that - must do better. sad.gif

GG: no problem, I've edited!

Thank you, but you missed my wee piece of chat. ...

Found it - thanks - promise to be more careful in the future mellow.gif
Bilbo you are absolutely correct.Legislation has changed dramatically since I was a lad!
As another poster suggests there is a big problem with litter and dogs dirt.It is as though many people have no civic pride.
I saw a novel thing in Kyoto and it was myriads of small cans with a bit of string creating a handle and hanging from various things in the street and they were used extensively for cig butts.Simple but effective means of helping the environment.
after googling this I found out that if the Canadian Lady had done the same thing at in Ontario she would had an on the spot fine of $C 110 and if she's done it from a moving car , would also have points put on to her license. so why are they so suprised and complaining thar they'll never come back? ar they not going home either? BTW the fine in California for the same offence is $500.
I see these wardens in Glasgow city centre on an almost daily basis, and it is blatantly obvious that they only ever pick on easy targets, usually females. I have never yet seen them challenge a ned, who might stand up to them or probably just give them false details. If they see an appropriate looking victim coming towards them who has almost reached the end of their fag, they will allow that person to pass by before turning around and following them down the street to see if they might be lucky enough to catch them dropping the butt. If the person is brave enough to stand up to their bullying and aggressive attitude, pointing out the neds all around who are discarding butts, buckfast bottles, chewing gum, etc., they just call for back up from another pair of wardens until the victim is bullied into submission by all four of them. Yes, they have a job to do and we all want Glasgow to be a cleaner place, but they should be much fairer in how they choose and deal with their victims. They need to stop being cowardly in who they select, and stop being bullies once they have selected them. I wouldn't want to tar all of them with the same brush, but most of them just seem to be neds in uniforms.
Visiting Erlangen, Germany, looked like a film set with no litter on the streets. Come lunchtime, everyone bought lunch from take-aways. End of lunchtime, no litter on the streets as young or old they dropped the takeaway containers/bags/etc straight in the litter bins.

Seeing completely clear and clean streets even after a lunchtime with crowds of schoolkids, office workers, local inhabitants all munching on kebabs, burgers, sandwiches yet no sign on the pavement to suggest there had been anyone there eating lunch left me feeling completely gobsmacked. Talking to the citizens there, they take a pride in their city and not just for its culture, heritage but also to the extent of keeping streets clean. Why can't we do the same? Glasgow is fond of promoting its own culture and history. Isn't it time we too, extended this to keeping our streets clean?
Personally I am sick of litter strewn streets. As far as this Mrs Turner was concerned, being a visitor to Glasgow, a warning would have been sufficient as she would possibly not be aware of law.

Just an afterthought, my Dad used to say, "Ladies do not smoke in the street." He died in 1956. rolleyes.gif
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