As many as 6,777 beggars were arrested in the Eastern Province last Hijri year and 95% of them were illegal residents in the country, according to police.
Police in coordination with other security agencies organized a massive field sweep against beggary in all cities and villages of the province.
The Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice and the provincial office of the Ministry of Labor and Social Development took part in the campaign, local media reported.
Beggars were arrested from malls, mosques, stop signs and major intersections. Women and children made up 90% of the arrested beggars and men 10%. Only 5% of the beggars were of Saudi nationality and they were referred to social development offices.
The fight against beggary requires the cooperation of citizens, officials said. They advised people to not be fooled by beggars or show any sympathy to them. Any beggar is found to be in genuine need of help should be referred to recognized charitable organizations, they said.
Social consultant Latifa Muhamed Bin Humaid said beggars would try to manipulate people to get their sympathy. They send children in shabby clothes into main streets, she said.
Bin Humaid suggested a few ways to deal with these people. She asked people to receive those who beg in the streets with a smile, treat them nicely without hurting their feelings and refer them to the nearest charity.
The charity preferably should be the ones that care for the welfare of the people in need by providing them with essential things like school books, food and winter clothes.
Finally, the government should intervene by enacting and enforcing strict regulations to prevent this phenomenon, said Bin Humaid.
Women and children made up 90% of the arrested beggars and men 10%. Only 5% of the beggars were of Saudi nationality and they were referred to social development offices.
Source Credit: Saudi Gazette