A new ban on paid charity collectors could mean the reduction of charity employees that are paid to occupy the town centre of Cannock to raise funds. This ban would mean that collections would only be able to take place two days a week and would restrict the collection groups from four to two individuals.

Before you think, however, that this new rule will rid the town of all annoyances, this ban only applies to workers that are being paid by charities to encourage direct debit commitments and not traditional change bucket shakers.

How useful then is this ban on paid charity collectors, if it is only on this minority? Is it going far enough to restrict what some would deem “begging”? Others may argue that whilst it leaves room for cash tin collectors, it cuts off a vital method of fund raising for local charities that rely on public donations.

It is questionable whether the shoppers of Cannock town centre will even see a relief from “stop and sign” collectors if only the small percentage of paid charity collectors are banned, but many others are able to continue. Yet the effect upon the charities themselves may be huge. The consequence of this may be that funding for charities that need it most could nose dive and those that are vulnerable or at risk could be the ones that suffer in the long run.

Naturally there should be, and are, regulations and restrictions determining who collects, their authenticity and their methods of stopping the public. However the collectors that are being limited by this law often aren’t fraudsters or sham artists. If anything, collectors that are employed by a charity are more readily able to prove their legitimacy. Many charities rely on paid workers to collect funds as volunteers are not reliable for repeated work and can be difficult to recruit.

How would this ban on paid charity collectors affect your experience of Cannock town centre? Are you often hassled to donate? Or are you a charity collector that is concerned for the continued funding of local charities?