Could It Be G4Mess? Illicit Dog Fouling Soon To Be Privatised

Tameside MBC set to outsource dog fouling fines collection

From next year, one borough east of the M60 motorway is set to dish its dirt to a private contractor. Literally.

Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council has invited tenders for the privatisation of its dog fouling enforcement service. The deal, claimed to be at no extra cost to council tax payers would see the likes of G4S or Control Plus clamping down on dog fouling, in the same way illegal car parking is enforced.

Whoever wins the tender is set to get a cut from each fine imposed. From the start of its tenure, on-the-spot fines for dog fouling will rise from £60 to £90.

Similar schemes are already in operation with Cardiff and Birmingham City Councils. Also following in the footsteps of Cardiff and Birmingham, along with Tameside MBC will be Torfaen Council. This will be a pilot scheme with uniformed and trained enforcement officers.

So, do you think privatised dog fouling enforcement is just the jobby, or should such matters remain in public hands? Feel free to comment.

S.V., 08 November 2013.

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7 thoughts on “Could It Be G4Mess? Illicit Dog Fouling Soon To Be Privatised

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    1. Hi Gerald,

      It depends on how principled each poop enforcement warden will be. Would he or she show some compassion to the little old lady, or will they desperate to hit their targets because of outstanding bills?

      I dread to think how blind people with guide dogs or people with support dogs (as well as elderly women) would cope if accosted by a privatised poop warden. We don’t seem to live in a dog friendly borough at the moment (has anyone been caught by breaking the rule on dog lead lengths? Could be a possible FoI request).

      Bye for now,

      Stuart.

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    2. Unfortunately its the little old Ladies/Gents whom flout the law in my local area. The times Ive actually berated a few oldies for not cleaning up their dogs mess is beyond belief. Don’t get me started on the ones who actually do clean up and then promptly chuck the bag over the nearest bush or fence. Sooner there is a fixed penalty for NOT carrying bags the better. Maybe then the people who do clear up after our dogs don’t get roped into the frenzy and furor over this disgusting habit of not cleaning up

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  1. I really don’t see the need for a private contractor – obsessed with targets and profits and not much else – to do this type of work which requires fairness and integrity.

    There are days when their wardens will not be able to hit targets due to not many people flouting this important law. At this point it will be up to the warden to use whatever unscrupulous means available to reach the quota. It will not be in their bosses’ best interest to do anything other than turn a blind eye to such practice.

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    1. Hi Mark,

      Citing the precedent set by privatised car parking enforcement, you could well be right. Whoever wins the contract to turn illicit dog muck to brass may well see an overzealous approach to dog fouling. Town centres could see a surfeit of privatised poop wardens whereas more peripheral areas, such as housing estates or semi rural parts of Tameside may lack adequate cover.

      Historically, in public sectors as well as private sectors, targets can be rigged for more Machiavellian means by less scrupulous people instead of for the greater good. This too is expressed in Adam Curtis’ three part documentary series ‘The Trap: What Happened To Our Dream of Freedom?’

      This is a move which is set to split some citizens. Some might value the more zealous approach, probably no way inclined as to whether private or public sectors should enforce dog fouling laws. Some may think converting muck to brass is tantamount to the same practices from privatised parking patrols or clamping services.

      I’m pretty much in the latter category. Then again, our possible new partners could surprise us.

      Bye for now,

      Stuart.

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  2. Its about time Dog walkers should have a fixed penalty for NOT carrying bags. I’m a responsible dog owner and would not mind being asked to produced a foul bag if asked to do so.

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    1. Hi Ross,

      A good idea in principle, so long as 1) there is sufficient wardens; and that 2) they are not too picky about the sort of bag you use. In the past, I have used small carrier bags instead of standard dog poo bags when walking my Jack Russell Terrier.

      Being as most of our record shops have closed, the dog dump friendly CD bags are diminished in number. So it’s over to Morrisons for the scented Bob Martin ones.

      Bye for now,

      Stuart.

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