Crackdown on charity muggers imminent?

17 September 2010

chuggerYou, as a human being who occasionally leaves the house, will definitely have been bothered by some little irksome hipster trying to ram some charity up your hole. They are as inevitable as taxes and self-loathing.

These little motherchuggers are especially irritating because you can't justifiably smack them in the mouth, thanks to fact that really, despite being gaspingly desperate and annoying, they're actually doing a rather good thing.

However, that's not to say that they can't change the way they go about their business. With that, Manchester City Council is to have something of a crackdown on chuggers, and there's a good chance that it could get rolled out across the country if it proves successful.

Charity collectors will now have to sign up to a new code of conduct in the city after the council got tired of dealing with harassed shoppers.

The MEN report that fundraisers will now have to agree on how they should conduct themselves in designated areas around the city. Most likely, this means they'll be moved out of the busiest shopping areas to somewhere more suitable.

Operations director, Gary Ellis, says: We're really keen to work with charities on this to find an organised way if working that benefits everyone. Visitors to the city centre have to be our first concern. What we don't want is having people feel intimidated as they're going about their business."

"We don't want to deny organisations the opportunity. They do very worthwhile work and we hope this will benefit them too by making people feel more able to approach them or stop and talk. We will look to agree on locations where they can operate and limit the numbers each day, perhaps on a timetable-type basis."

If this goes through, it could mean an end to the infuriating trend of these little do-gooding squirts following you down the road after you've given them a reasonable 'no thanks'. That said, the smart folk give them a cheeky lie by saying "I've already signed up!" If they are given designated areas, it means that shoppers won't have the song and dance of making looping great routes around city centres in their attempts to avoid even making eye-contact with these people.

Surely, chuggers are more prone to making people feel ill-will toward a good-cause? Feeling weary and irritated doesn't exactly promote altruism and generosity does it?

What do you think? Do you want to see something similar 'round where you live?


  • Mel
    Don't chuggers earn around £10 an hour? I always wish I had the guts to ask them if they would donate a day's wages back to the charity rather than bothering me.
  • StauntonLick
    I wish we had something like this in Brighton - the main shopping area is essentially a straight road which is lined with the buggers - each one you pass makes you do the whole "sorry, I'm in a frightful rush" dance, leaving you feeling immensely guilty, both for avoiding charity and ignoring a fellow human being. The truth is, if you were to give in to every one of these chuggers you wouldn't have any money left for yourself - Charities need to realise this and stop with the culture of guilt. I will give to charity as and when I am able or willing, not on the basis of being pestered into it.
  • Grunty
    @mel Yep, but they often raise 4 times that amount.
  • zleet
    Have no issue with charity 'muggers' as they seem happy to be told to fuck off. I do however have issues with pushy middle aged women with clipboards who seem to hunt in packs down my local high street.
  • dopz
    Just look grumpy - they won;t bother you at all. Big Issue sellers, now they really annoy me.
  • JJ
    Best response I have heard to a Big Issue guy was "No thanks, I get mine delivered"
  • akiss
    learn a random Russian sentence, (worked well until Vladimir started selling Big Issues)
  • The B.
    Many moons ago I used to rent a shared house with an "actor" who did chugging in his spare time (i.e. every day), he used to get £40 a day and 30% of the profits, I seem to remember he pulled in about a grand a day over Christmas, not bad, £300 a day in commission.
  • zleet
    @dopz There are only one person who I will buy big issues from. He stands outside my local book shop and is a tiny leathery old bloke who says 'Big issue Sir?' and 'thank you sir' when you say no, he is so nice I feel like a twat for not flinging all my cash at him whenever I pass so I regard buying the mag the cheaper option.
  • PaulH
    Arghh! I work in Manchester City Centre and these twerps hang around near the Town Hall - the place I have to walk past Monday - Friday when I leave work and they always try to grab me despite the amount of times I tell them to piss off - I welcome this news
  • Inspector G.
    I always pull out my mobile and pretend I'm on the phone. Seems to work.
  • ButterMan
    I didn't realise they earnt money, to be honest. What a bunch of cunts. Y'know the cretins that come to your door and try to make you sign up for a £15 a month DD to a cat shelter or whatever? There is now officially no difference between them and these bucket-shaking fucktards. I generally buy a copy of the Big Issue, because if I'm ever in a position where it's either "Big Issue Seller" or "Nick stuff" I doubt I'd go the same way.
  • Uncle C.
    I'd happily give my personal details to the pleasant young chugger illustrated above. In fact I often approach and try to persuade nice young men, working as chuggers, to come round and earn a quick tenner. Strangely, they often decline my invitations.
  • Whisky
    After they siphon off their wages and then the company (profit making) that emplyees them get their share I imagine only 5% or so actually goes to where the well intentioned donators actually think. Worse still was the dopey fucker who knocked on my door during my evening meal, despite a sign telling him not to, and was told a polite no thanks. Half an hour later the same dopey twat was banging away on my door again. bastard.
  • issac h.
    They would sell more Big Issues if their salesmen didn't dress like tramps.
  • Jim
    5% is an exaggeration but I agree, I really don't like them. Apparently this form of fund-raising is more cost effective than tv and print etc. - but that was from the company I had an interview with so I'm sceptical on that - certainly it's easier for small charities as they couldn't necessarily afford that advertising space. Didn't do the job in the end. Partially because those people aren't earning anywhere near as much as you think (its the managers and supervisors in the company that are getting rich off it - it's purely commission based and those managers take the majority of the commission for themselves), and partially because I couldn't exploit a charity like those companies invariably do.
  • The B.
    I have to say, I don't buy the Big Issue any more, I've spoken to so many vendors and not one of them has been homeless, I think it was when one of them proudly told me he'd just got himself a Dyson for his flat I decided that perhaps the Big Issue wasn't being managed properly. I'm all for people getting themselves off the ground selling it but there has to be a cut off point when they should be looking for something else and giving someone else a chance.
  • james d.
    what makes me really mad is if they try to get in your path to stop you, i have often wondered if you can legally push someone out of the way if they do that.
  • pigsh*t
    yes you can. the law does allow you to protect yourself. if someone stands deliberately in your way and you go to avoid them then stand in your way again then that is called twatism and you can headbutt them.
  • LanceVance
    I just walk about in my Y-fronts and a blood splattered t-shirt, that stops anyone from asking me anything.
  • hippy1001
    think something like this was on the news saying that charities pay around a year and a half of the money raised to a company that employes these people when they sign a new person up. It could work out about, for every signature the chugger gets his employer gets £150ish pound. a few years ago, when i was younger and more gullable, i actually thought these people done it for free, because they believed in the charity they were fundraising for. if i had a debit card back then i would have probably signed up. i dont go into towns anymore, i buy most of my stuff online, but last time i was it was so annoying trying to not make eye contact with these people, breathing a sigh of relief when you see some person ahead of you get copped by them knowing you can walk past safely and without hasstle. having to cross to the other side of the road so as not to be hastled by these people. It was very annoying. I'm a polite person in RL and i dont like to swear at them, or even be ignorant but im getting old and cranky, i think thats why i avoid the high streets. shame though all the little shops that loose customers because of them, and the other people that beg you for £1 for a cup of tea, and also the people that stop suddenly in front of you, but thats a diff thing all together.
  • chuggertastic
    these f*ers line the route into manctown usuall 3 big issue sellers and 3 of these cu4ts within a 300 meter stretch A quick go away or ill find out where you live and butt rape your mothers fox does the trick
  • Boywonder
    I used to go to Uni in Manchester and the little arsehole chuggers used to physically grab you to get your attention, or shove something in your hand and then tell you to pay for it. After one grabbed my girlfriend, I contacted the police and the city council - who both admitted they'd had huge problems with them doing this...Nice to see it took them almost ten years to finally get the balls to do something about it! ;)
  • muggachugger
    One of those fuckers grabbed me i'd put them through one of the wondefull glazed linings in saint Annes square they love so much Funny the club I used to go stated just putting a hand toward can be classed as attempted assault and you are allowed to retaliate if you feel threatened - the first punch rule is wrong. You do not need to be physically touched to defend yourself - perception of impending assault - unfortunatly a spinning backfist isnt classed as reasonable force.
  • RTB
    the best wey to disarm a chugger is to tell them that you saw the news item which revealed that they are not paid by the charity they are collecting for, but for a profit making company to whom the first 12 months' worth of your donation goes before the charity get a pennyof it. I usually top this off by saying that if I wish to donate to that particular charity,I will do it direct so that the charity gets all of my money immediately and none of it is creamed off. That usually shuts them up. also, threatening to take their name and registration number usually sends them fleeing if they've been a bit too pushy. reclaim the streets!
  • Mike T.
    Oh thank Christ that Manchester's the first one to roll this out. I work in Manc city centre and it's usually the buggers from Shelter leaping out all happy faced in front of me as I walk down Market Street. I actually donated £20 to Shelter last year and I think they've probably spent more money sending me bloody information leaflets about how ace they are.
  • Slacker
    Chuggers are a nuisance, but I can see that some of the good people of Manchester have their measure. Myself, I find that a simple 'Fuck off' delivered in a low, measured voice while looking the "bucket-shaking fucktard" (love it!) squarely in the eye dissuades all but the most determined/retarded.
  • Rachel
    I find there's nothing like complete and utter indifference to deal with them. The moment you get annoyed, attempt a ‘witty’ response, or even reply with a polite "no, thankyou", they've achieved exactly what they set out to do - they've distracted you from your business, which is step one on their mental path to getting money out of you. If you instead walk past (or around) them, refuse to acknowledge their existencein any way, and ignore any rudeness you may be subjected to, on the other hand, it has the effect of stopping their antics dead, at the case of making them look like an unpleasant, pushy blowhard where they’re dumb enough to shout after you. Treat them with the contempt they richly deserve, and they’ll soon go away: there’s only so much mileage in an entirely one-sided exchange.
  • accutane l.
    Accutane has harmed so many, with extra coming out of the woodwork. Hopefully these men and women acquire healthy once more.
  • Matt
    I used to work as a 'chugger' myself, it's very tough in the apathetic and cynical social climate we live in. I don't think people are fair to them. In particular the use of the word 'harass' that for some reason keeps cropping up. The Oxford definition of 'harass'- 'subject to aggressive pressure or intimidation'. Someone please explain how a fundraiser's polite greetings and friendly banter falls into this category. You literally can't be employed unless you have a degree of kindness and support the charity. So I'm sure a lot of them would happily sacrifice their commision if you specifically asked. The only reason you feel 'guilty' after being stopped by these people is because they've just told you to have a nice day in reply to your moody 'no' or rude comment.
  • Fred W.
    When chuggers come knocking at my house I always invite them in to let them explain what they're collecting for. We always have fun. They literally never want to leave!
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