In an equally unexpected and welcome turnaround, Melbourne Lord mayor Robert Doyle has apparently distanced himself from earlier statements implying he wanted to criminalise rough sleeping on the city’s streets.
Doyle also said he supported “any move by police to bring an end to what has become a blight on our city,” and it was believed he’d propose a ban on sleeping rough at the next council meeting.
Instead, she said Doyle is specifically worried about “mattresses and other bulky items being present on the streets.
“He’s looking at bylaws to resolve that particular problem – potentially enabling council officers to remove those belongings.”
The current furore around Melbourne’s homeless population has been stoked by intensified media coverage of homeless people encamped near Flinders Street Station.