A Bromley police constable says more beggars are appearing on the street because people keep giving them money.

PC Soar wrote the opinion piece on the Bromley police Facebook account and believes residents should offer the cash to homeless charities instead.

Giving beggars money "rewards their criminal behaviour" and prevents them from being "more productive like finding gainful employment or learning a new skill", according to the post.

The officer compared the situation to feeding ducks bread, leading to "anti-social activity" in the pond.

"It struck me as very similar to the problem of begging – people who are giving to beggars are encouraging them," PC Soar wrote.

"As soon as the word gets round there is a free handout going, the numbers increase and they flock around the richest spots. Giving money to beggars is increasing their numbers and damaging your local community."

The piece added: "It is encouraging criminal and anti-social behaviour, and ultimately harms the beggars themselves.

"So please don’t give beggars anything, give to a homeless charity instead. They give people the help they need on an individual basis because they know that money alone is not a panacea for everything. They provide homes, food, and life skills and opportunities to really turn people’s lives around."

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The opinion piece, which inspired dozens of comments, argued that begging will "no longer be a problem" once people "finally stop giving money".

Bromley police has had an increase in complaints about the number of beggars near shopping districts, which inspired the post.

Dennis Rogers, 58, was homeless for 10 years before he was named in the Queens Honours List last year.

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The Penge man said responding to the Bromley police post was "very difficult" because the issue is so complex.

"Not all beggars have drugs or drink issues," Dennis, who is 16 years sober, told News Shopper.

However, he admitted that if someone would have given him ten pounds when he was rough sleeping that he most likely would have spent it on booze.

"We shouldn’t ignore homeless people," Dennis insisted. "Some people survive off begging and don’t do drugs.

"I might have bought drink but I also would have bought food. You get sick of the same sandwiches."

Dennis was awarded his MBE for his services to homeless people after he set up the Saturday Club – supporting people with addictions and those sleeping rough.

Do you agree with the opinion that giving money to beggars is a negative thing? Let us know in the comments.