People who spit in the street will face a fine from next month as by-law takes shape

Chris Bond and Monty Meth in 2012 campaigning for an anti-spitting by-law

Chris Bond and Monty Meth in 2012 campaigning for an anti-spitting by-law

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The first anti-spitting by-law in the country will be introduced by Enfield Borough Council next month.

Following years of attempting to force through the policy, new legislation will be introduced on December 8.

The quest to stop spitting started in 2011 as protesters sought to gather 2,750 signatures to trigger a formal debate by the council.

More than 4,800 people eventually signed the petition in support of stopping people who spit on the streets of Enfield.

Those found guilty by litter patrol staff will be fined up to £500.

Enfield Over 50s Forum’s President Monty Meth has played a major role in the campaign and is delighted to see the new by-law come in next month.

He said: “We managed to attract almost 5,000 people to sign this petition, which shows great support across the borough.

“There was slight resentment when the ban was first announced but I think this will definitely help our community come together and will encourage more people to have a greater community involvement.

“There is no doubt that by having support from all parties in the borough that we were able to go to Eric Pickles with a strong case.”

Plans progressed quickly with support growing for a by-law.

Progress seemed to have stalled in October 2012, as the Government’s Department for Communities and Local Government called for more evidence to ban spitting in public.

But campaigners could rejoice in July 2013 when Eric Pickles gave the go-ahead to criminalise spitting in public across the borough.

Enfield Council’s cabinet member for environment Councillor Chris Bond said: “Spitting is an utterly foul and disgusting habit and we’re delighted that the Government has given us the power to prosecute people for spitting in the street.

“It has been a long and tortuous route to this moment but we’re grateful the Government has given the go ahead for our by law. We can now get on with dealing with those disgusting individuals who want to share their spit with the wider community and send out a strong message to show that sort of disgusting behaviour won’t be tolerated in a civilised society.

"We would not have been able to achieve this fantastic result without the support of the community and I’d like to thank the thousands of people who signed a petition backing our campaign and the hundreds of others across Enfield who have shown their support throughout this process and shared our view that spitting in the street shouldn’t be tolerated.”

Comments (3)

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5:53am Thu 21 Nov 13

Rubydi says...

About time too!
Lets hope more local authorities follow this lead.
About time too! Lets hope more local authorities follow this lead. Rubydi
  • Score: 2

8:52pm Sat 23 Nov 13

Copper Mill says...

'Those found guilty by litter patrol staff will be fined up to £500.' - Not so - those found spitting will be taken to court and the magistrates will decide on the fine, which is a maximum of £500 for breaching the bye law. The litter patrol staff have no powers to find anyone guilty or indeed fine them.
Readers should take note of the local authority where I live, Waltham Forest, who have already taken a different approach and have already been issuing penalty notices for this disgusting habit and had convictions at court for those that did not pay. Shame that Enfield did not follow them as they would then already be dealing with this.
'Those found guilty by litter patrol staff will be fined up to £500.' - Not so - those found spitting will be taken to court and the magistrates will decide on the fine, which is a maximum of £500 for breaching the bye law. The litter patrol staff have no powers to find anyone guilty or indeed fine them. Readers should take note of the local authority where I live, Waltham Forest, who have already taken a different approach and have already been issuing penalty notices for this disgusting habit and had convictions at court for those that did not pay. Shame that Enfield did not follow them as they would then already be dealing with this. Copper Mill
  • Score: 0

12:11am Mon 9 Dec 13

Dennis R says...

If it is permissible to spit into a bin, is it also permissible to spit into a kerbside storm drain? What of the case of someone being sick? Far worse than spitting, naturally. Are they to be fined by the "chunk?" Will the Litter Patrol take a sample of the offending substance? Consider an accused disputes the accusation in court, can he or his attorney demand the evidence be produced for DNA comparison? These and other provisions of the by-law need to be fine tuned. But, yes, spitting IS disgusting. No argument there. Obviously this will reduce the number of chewing gum "spots" o the pavement . . . unless the offending party transfers the gum to their hand and throws it down. The it becomes a Mk I littering offence.
If it is permissible to spit into a bin, is it also permissible to spit into a kerbside storm drain? What of the case of someone being sick? Far worse than spitting, naturally. Are they to be fined by the "chunk?" Will the Litter Patrol take a sample of the offending substance? Consider an accused disputes the accusation in court, can he or his attorney demand the evidence be produced for DNA comparison? These and other provisions of the by-law need to be fine tuned. But, yes, spitting IS disgusting. No argument there. Obviously this will reduce the number of chewing gum "spots" o the pavement . . . unless the offending party transfers the gum to their hand and throws it down. The it becomes a Mk I littering offence. Dennis R
  • Score: 0

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