andaman
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Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Tue Oct 30, 2007 1:33 pm

A Finnish paper Helsingin Sanomat wrote (in English) about a new phenomenon in Helsinki:
"Beggars on their knees cause consternation on Helsinki streets":

http://www.hs.fi/english/article/Beg...+on+Helsinki+streets/1135231254146

Lately more beggars have been arriving to Helsinki from the new EU states, some with small children. It seems even the local authorities have been a bit confused with them here, begging is not illegal but it have been rather unknown phenomenon.
It seems the wave of the people escaping poverty in the new EU states has reached now Helsinki, how is it in the other EU cities?

[Edited 2007-10-30 06:56:21]
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Toast
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Tue Oct 30, 2007 2:01 pm

I'm almost sure the beggars you're referring to are Gypsies. I don't know in Finland, but over here all other "mainstream" Eastern European immigrants are very hard workers and wouldn't dream of begging anywhere.

A surefire way to annoy the hell out of a Romanian or Slovak is to label their countries as the main sources of Gypsy beggars and petty thieves. It's an embarrassing problem, and Gypsies have been spreading all across Europe for years already, including to other Eastern European countries. I'd compare their problems with those of the Aboriginal people of Australia: alcoholism, illiteracy, petty criminality, unwillingness to integrate. Discrimination and police crackdowns have been pushing them out of Eastern Europe, and I'm willing to bet the Finnish will eventually adopt a heavy-handed approach towards them as well.

There really is no good solution of the problem in sight. The Polish government used to build permanent houses for Gypsies and force their children to go to school. A very civilized approach, but it didn't work. Then you had the Czechs who started building a dividing wall between Czechs and Gypsies in one town, to the justified outrage of world opinion. In Slovakia and Romania, where there are entire Gypsy settlements, law enforcement and public services tend to give them a wide berth - that's where Sacha Baron Cohen shot "Borat"...
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PlymSpotter
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Tue Oct 30, 2007 2:03 pm

Quoting Toast (Reply 1):
I don't know in Finland, but over here all other "mainstream" Eastern European immigrants are very hard workers and wouldn't dream of begging anywhere.

Certainly here in Birmingham, in the UK that is true. The only beggars are the washed up locals who have often become addicts and then been forgotten about by society.


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oly720man
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Tue Oct 30, 2007 2:03 pm

Quoting Andaman (Thread starter):
how is it in the other EU cities?

Watch your pockets in London....

http://www.londonlogue.com/travel-ti...london-pickpocket-gang-jailed.html
http://observer.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,,2015746,00.html
http://www.yjb.gov.uk/en-gb/practiti.../ExamplesofGoodPractice/NewhamYOT/

Organised thievery rather than begging, but I expect the begging is sometimes more driven by criminals than poverty.
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PanHAM
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Tue Oct 30, 2007 2:14 pm

Nothing new in German cities. Most of them are not even Gypsies. The Gypsies have more sophisticated means to draw money from other people's pocket.

The beggars come mainly from Romanian rural villages and it is indeed organized crime. A guy from the village packs them into his mini bus and brings them to another country in Western Europe, puts them out on the street and exploits most of the money from them. They get shit to eat and live in basements under conditions no one would keep a dog here.

This is slavery, nothing less and the authorities should close it down, should arrest the people who exploit their slaves,m confiscate the money, send the beggars back and put the criminals in jail - in their home countries and not in our western style resort jails.

. .
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MD11Engineer
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Tue Oct 30, 2007 2:22 pm

Years ago my Sierra Leonian ex-wife used to live in a refugee center in Berlin, together with Romanian gypsies and became friends with one family. Through her I got introduced to them as well and learned a bit about their customs.
The begging is actually a racket. You can be sure that the begging women are being watched by some overseer somewhere. One reason is that gypsies in Romania are forced to borrow money from criminal loan sharks at exorbitant interest if the need it, because very few banks will give them a loan. If they cannot make their payments, they get sent abroad to beg.

Another thing is the tradintion. Gypsy society appears to me to be quite conservative. I know that the mother of the faily I knew had to split from her husnand (who was beating her anyway) and from her family to enable her daughters to be sent to school and not to be married off at the age of 14 (mostly at the insistence of the grandparents, becaudse "We always did it this way!".
She herself is almost illiterate, but working as a translator for the Red Cross.

If you know some of them more closely, they are often very nice and kind people and good friends, but if they see you just as a mark, you'll be ripped off.
I never give these beggars a cent.

Jan
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andaman
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Tue Oct 30, 2007 2:46 pm

Quoting Toast (Reply 1):
I'm almost sure the beggars you're referring to are Gypsies. I don't know in Finland, but over here all other "mainstream" Eastern European immigrants are very hard workers and wouldn't dream of begging anywhere.

Yes they must be Gypsies, the paper just didn't want to use the word for some reason. Finland has got immigrants mainly from Russia and Estonia, no beggars there.
Before the new states joined EU, we also got a lot of of Gypsies from Slovakia and Romania seeking for asylum, but really few of them were allowed to stay. Hopefully their situation is improving in Eastern-Europe, but it seems the process is really slow.

Finland actually has a rather large, 500y old Gypsy - or Romany - minority itself, a lot larger than in the other Nordic countries. The Finnish Romany people have roots in Northern-India originally, I don't think the term Gypsy means the same thing everywhere in Europe. Nowadays they are not out of the society in Finland anymore, like they once were, though many of them have kept their own old traditions, which is great I think. Most likely there is some Gypsy blood in my family too. The traditional Finnish Gypsy dress is very colourful:


[Edited 2007-10-30 07:53:05]
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ME AVN FAN
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Tue Oct 30, 2007 2:54 pm

Quoting Andaman (Thread starter):
Lately more beggars have been arriving to Helsinki from the new EU states, some with small children. It seems even the local authorities have been a bit confused with them here, begging is not illegal but it have been rather unknown phenomenon.
It seems the wave of the people escaping poverty in the new EU states has reached now Helsinki, how is it in the other EU cities?

-
I first saw this "phenomena" on a holiday-trip to Prague in 1991, and then later on in various places, LONG BEFORE the countries in question joined the E.U.. So that it is NOT "new EU countries" but "former WarsawPact countries". To do political correctness aside it usually is Romania and from there it generally is "Gypsies". And here we land right nicely in the midst of a nice racism problem. You now canNOT regard all Romanians or all Romanian Gypsies as beggars or thieves. And you ought to realize that a lot of the social and economic problems still are results of the disastrous reign of Nicolae Ceaucescu.
-

Quoting Toast (Reply 1):
I'd compare their problems with those of the Aboriginal people of Australia: alcoholism, illiteracy, petty criminality, unwillingness to integrate.

No, I am not a specialist on Australian affairs and never been there, but the Aboriginals ARE THE locals and are THE original people there, while the Gypsies are outsiders everywhere. Millions of Gypsies in reality over centuries have become integrated in Europe in fact. Whether alcoholism is a problem of the Gypsies can at least be doubted. So that some minor parallels are more than outweighed by differences.
-
 
TuRbUleNc3
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Tue Oct 30, 2007 7:36 pm

I have always lived by the same ritual, i find it hard not to give money to those in need. Id prefer to give my money to someone busking and actually doing something rather than just sitting there. However im always reluctant about what they will use the money for. If i suspect it to be drugs or alcohol, no chance of any money. If they say they are hungry i buy them food, if they are thirsty i buy them a drink.

There was one oldish guy (40's) who sat outside the bus station every day begging for money. All he wanted was some money to get him by. He got beat up most nights by chavs and drunks. I'd see fresh bruises and cuts on him each day.
Each and every morning without fail i met him and took him 2 bacon sandwiches and a big cup of coffee. As years went on, i got to know this guy very well and gave him a bed at my house, bought him some new clothes and found him a job. He then moved on in life, met a partner what became a wife and lived with her and now has a better job than me!
Him and his wife still come over from time to time especially at christmas and he never forgets what i did for him and always says without fail how grateful he is for how ive changed his life.

To this day, i feel a great sense of pride for what ive done for this guy but something that means nothing to me, means the world to someone who has nothing at all.
 
dc9northwest
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Tue Oct 30, 2007 10:42 pm

I can confirm there are a lot of Romanian gypsies in most major cities. These people annoy the hell out of me, because they make my country look bad. Certainly, the majority are Romanian (duh, largest country except Poland, w/ largest gypsy population).

I heard a story about the gypsies setting up camp in Hyde Park in London. I am uncertain if it was made up or not, but I hear that Romanian translators are called every time there's a gypsy offense, be they from Romania or not. This sounds to me like mass discrimination. People must undestand not all Gypsies are Romanians, and not all Romanians are Gypsies. In fact, Gypsies are often hated in Romania for what they do outside of the country more than their actions within Romania, which are annoying, but mild...

They live in complete poverty, especially in medium-size cities, where they've nothing to do. Of course they're going to run away. The Romanian government will turn a blind eye to this mass emigration just to get rid of the 'problem' without doing anything. Ceausescu marginalized them.

Quoting PanHAM (Reply 4):

This is slavery, nothing less and the authorities should close it down, should arrest the people who exploit their slaves,m confiscate the money, send the beggars back and put the criminals in jail - in their home countries and not in our western style resort jails.

Haha, yeah, that'd be good... Never going to happen in Romania, trust me. The government doesn't give a flying fuck. Those elected care about fighting amongst themselves.

Quoting Toast (Reply 1):
Aboriginal people of Australia: alcoholism, illiteracy, petty criminality, unwillingness to integrate.

Describing our native Romanian gypsies (those who live in cities mainly) exactly. They are alcoholic (goes for villagers too), petty criminality is rampant (Ferentari neighborhood, the only really dangerous place in Romania, really is 90% gypsy), illiteracy, yes (due to tradition they don't go to school... not after they're 14), Integration.... well, they attempt to, but fail, thus leading to the other three.

By the way, as sort of a rant, many Romanians hate the EU and consider that the European Union wanted to fuck Romania (and Bulgaria) over economically (to be used as markets for Euro goods and nothing more), thus the gypsies in return, from both countries, are fair game... Not really a joke, not really reality. I, for one, did not want for Romania to be part of the EU...
 
Doona
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Tue Oct 30, 2007 11:02 pm

We get some once in a while where I live too. There seems to be one family that comes through Lund (city where I live) once every few months (two adults, three kids) and they'll mostly hang around the train station. Most often they'll be spread out, and I must say that I'm very disturbed seeing a lone child, maybe 7 or 8 years old, sitting next to the station entrance wearing shorts and a sweater and holding a 7-eleven paper cup out in cold weather. Not sure if they're from a new EU member state though.

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ozglobal
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Wed Oct 31, 2007 12:15 am

Yes, in Paris, with up to 85 Million official visitors each year, the number of 'transients' is growing and the gypsy beggars are everywhere. One can readily distinguish between the Romani 'profiteers' and the local destitutes.
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Wed Oct 31, 2007 5:00 am

Quoting Dc9northwest (Reply 9):
These people annoy the hell out of me, because they make my country look bad.

These people should not "annoy" you as they mirror the enormous problems your country had and has to overcome. They of course are a nuisance to Romanians like you and to people outside Romania, but they and their problems are one of the problems Europe got out of the decades of a divided Europe. A "bad name" for Romania ? Maybe, but your country rather still suffers from the "bad name" produced by Messrs Gheorgiou-Dei (spelling possibly wrong) and Ceaucescu, while "Count Dracula" rather makes Romania "special" !  Wink  Wink
-


Quoting Dc9northwest (Reply 9):
many Romanians hate the EU and consider that the European Union wanted to fuck Romania (and Bulgaria) over economically (to be used as markets for Euro goods and nothing more)

while many West Europeans despise Romania and Bulgaria, considering that the two countries fuck the rest of Europe over economically and just want European subsidies and nothing more  Big grin  sarcastic 
-
 
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Scooter01
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:32 pm

Quoting Andaman (Thread starter):
Lately more beggars have been arriving to Helsinki from the new EU states, some with small children.

Yes, we had them here in Oslo too, but it seems to be a seasonal thing. The beggars seem to become better off as winter is getting closer and there are fewer foreign tourists around.

On another note; there is an open-air market in Lithuania where (according to Norwegian police) you could buy back the stereo or airbag stolen from your car....

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Leezyjet
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Wed Oct 31, 2007 10:19 pm

TuRbUleNc3,

That is an amazing story. Welcome to my RU list.

I often think when I am in London that all alot of these people need is a chance. I'm sure most of them are not there through their own chice directly, more through making bad decisions or splitting up with partners. I have spoken to a few and most are nice people and appreciate that you have stopped to give them the time of day. The one thing that does annoy me though are the ones who sit directly under the cash machines, so you have to reach over them to get your money !!.

I have often thought that the councils should set up a scheme to help get them off the streets, but make them work for it to make them feel worth something and that they are pulling themselves out of the situation rather than being given handouts which alot of them don't want as they still have some pride even though they live on the street.
I thought that giving them printed hi-visability vests showing they are genuine and a bucket and a squeegee and getting them to stand at junctions and clean car windscreens. I know this is usually frowned upon in London, but with a genuine organisation that is publicised to let the public know what they are doing, then it could be a cheap way of getting them into jobs that could ultimately pull them out of their situation through their own hard work, not other peoples pity.

 Smile
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dc9northwest
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 1:20 am

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 12):
Maybe, but your country rather still suffers from the "bad name" produced by Messrs Gheorgiou-Dei (spelling possibly wrong) and Ceaucescu, while "Count Dracula" rather makes Romania "special" !    

It's Gheorghiu-Dej  Wink Right, but the gypsy problem would exist even if Churchill wouldn't've given the USSR 90% control over Romania... The problems are certainly there, but I think the image created by these people is worse than that of the dictators... I'd rather we be considered a poor country than a poor country full of beggars and thieves.
 
ME AVN FAN
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 6:42 am

Quoting Dc9northwest (Reply 15):
the image created by these people is worse than that of the dictators..

amazing is that Ceaucescu managed to create quite a splendid image of himself in Western media and an image of Romania which was far above realities, so that actual Romanian realities came to a Western audience rather as a kind of shock. In regard to the Gypsies, Romania has to solve the problems WITH them, even if it may be tiresome. Switzerland in the early 20th century tried to do a "forced integration" by taking the children of Gypsies away from their parents and giving them to foster parents. Such simply cannot be the way to go and the Swiss Federal government some years ago formally apologized and even paid some cents to the Gypsies as "compensation".
-

Quoting Dc9northwest (Reply 15):
I'd rather we be considered a poor country than a poor country full of beggars and thieves.

beggars are a nuisance but thieves and burglars are more of a serious problem. And yes, there IS a reputation problem of your country in the West, as people tend to generalize. In the mind of many, all young people from former Yugoslavia drive on highways with at least 180kms per hour, all Romanians are trying to burglar houses, all Arabs are terrorists, all Turks want to have Turkish customs observed, all Italians talk as loudly as a Caravelle III, and all Spaniards are in the church at least four times per day.
 
LAXspotter
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 7:30 am

Quoting OzGlobal (Reply 11):
gypsy beggars

can someone explain the Gypsy situation to an outsider, I have friends from the Eastern bloc countries, particularly Moldova and Ukraine and they seem to have a unfriendly view of the Gypsies.
"Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel" Samuel Johnson
 
ME AVN FAN
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 7:55 am

Quoting LAXspotter (Reply 17):
gypsy beggars

can someone explain the Gypsy situation to an outsider, I have friends from the Eastern bloc countries, particularly Moldova and Ukraine and they seem to have a unfriendly view of the Gypsies.

where the Gypsies originally came from is disputed but it looks as if they came from Northern India. They for centuries in Europe moved around and were active as craftsmen sharpening knifes, repairing kitchenware and selling household articles and clothing. They also were known to make nice music and dancing and entertainment. BUT they in recent centuries increasingly got a disastrous name for stealing cats and dogs and rabbits, burglaring and being pocket-thieves. And in the law-and-order minded Europe of the 19th Century they increasingly became a nuisance to "society". In some countries they arranged themselves better than in others, but problems continued. And while things in Western Europe, at least after WW-II did improve, much remained bad in the "Eastern Bloc" not least as the problem simply was ignored by the Communists. When Eastern Europe became free after 1990, the local Gypsies found out that Europe was open to them again, and many locals including local and national governments supported that idea in order to get rid of as many of them as possible.
 
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Braybuddy
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 11:21 am

Yup, even a small town here on the periphery of the EU has its fair share of Roma begging in the streets. Some of them play instruments, others have babies in their arms. A group of 30 or so had to be repatriated recently, living as they were underneath cardboard sheets in the bushes on a roundabout serving the country's busiest motorway. They went home without protest, having been soaked to death in the dreadful summer of 2007.
 
Fiatstilojtd
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 11:36 am

Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 19):
others have babies in their arms

...and most of the times the babies or young children are under heavy medication to keep them quiet or make them look asleep the whole day, or another example are people without legs and without a wheel chair in the middle of a pedestrian zone....who in his right mind would believe that they got to this place themselves?


fiatstilojtd
 
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WildcatYXU
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 12:02 pm

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 18):
much remained bad in the "Eastern Bloc" not least as the problem simply was ignored by the Communists. Wh

That's not entirely true, if at all. Czechoslovakia had several attempts to improve their situation, or assimilate them. Gypsy families were given flats in apartment buildings along with the majority population, children were supported in schools, secondary and university students were given free lodging and food...No change, the free spirit of these people prevailed. They simply didn't blend in. The biggest mistake was to take their traditional craft from them (gypsies were, for instance, famous blacksmiths).
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 12:49 pm

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 21):
much remained bad in the "Eastern Bloc" not least as the problem simply was ignored by the Communists. Wh

That's not entirely true, if at all.

I said "much" and NOT "everything, and I said "by the Communists" but not "by the ....." . Difference? Stubborn communists refused to acknowledge even the existence of the problem while many officials in these countries tried to tackle matters. You however say that "they didn't blend in" and this again is partically correct and partially wrong. As quite many Gypsies in Europe have done so. It is those who do NOT who get "coverage".

Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 19):
soaked to death

the pictures of the Irish Tourist Board show places in Dublin in the nicest sunlight !  Yeah sure  Wink
 
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WildcatYXU
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 1:52 pm

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 22):
You however say that "they didn't blend in" and this again is partically correct and partially wrong. As quite many Gypsies in Europe have done so. It is those who do NOT who get "coverage".

We're talking about the population in former Warsaw pact countries. There, unfortunately, the was majority didn't blend in. And yes, the stubborn commie leaders weren't able to acknowledge a simple fact that a nation used to free life won't change in a matter of minute, settle down and do whatever is ordered.

[Edited 2007-11-01 06:53:06]
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 2:17 pm

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 23):
majority didn't blend in

in the short-term I would expect a majority not to blend in, but in the long-term (50 years to 500 years) I would say that a majority DID blend in.
 
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WildcatYXU
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 2:42 pm

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 24):
in the short-term I would expect a majority not to blend in, but in the long-term (50 years

Not really. It may be true for the old EU countries, but in the new ones...
Let's speak about the one I know, former Czechoslovakia. The percentage of gypsy population living the same standard as the majority is very low. That's a simple fact.
310, 319, 320, 321, 333, 343, 345, 346, 732, 735, 73G, 738, 744, 752, 762, 763, 77L, 77W, 788, AT4, AT7, BEH, CR2, CRA, CR9, DH1, DH3, DH4, E75, E90, E95, F28, F50, F100, Saab 340, YAK40
 
ME AVN FAN
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 3:09 pm

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 25):
The percentage of gypsy population living the same standard as the majority is very low. That's a simple fact.

-
In Switzerland, it is known that certain specific names are people of Gypsie decent. One of them for some years was a very popular President of the Swiss National Bank, one of the most powerful, if not THE most powerful jobs in Switzerland. Other people of apparent Gypsie origin are goldsmiths, hotel owners etc. But please do not ask me about percentages, as I cannot help with them and would DIStrust any such statistics. Obvious however is that most Swiss Gypsies have long ago stopped to be "Gypsies".
 
TuRbUleNc3
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 3:43 pm

Quoting Leezyjet (Reply 14):
That is an amazing story. Welcome to my RU list

Thankyou.
Nowadays you dont know who is genuine and who uses it for drugs or alcohol. I feel pity for those dependant on drugs or alcohol. He actually called me yesterday and i told him i told everyone the story. He's just been promoted to general manager of a restaurant, and after running into a bit of money is in the process of setting up a type of 'hostel' for other homeless in the area. It just shows the bit of good you may do could probably pay off for years to come. Glad you enjoyed reading it mate!
 
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WildcatYXU
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 4:25 pm

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 26):

That takes a lot of goodwill and tolerance from both sides. Congratulations Switzerland!
310, 319, 320, 321, 333, 343, 345, 346, 732, 735, 73G, 738, 744, 752, 762, 763, 77L, 77W, 788, AT4, AT7, BEH, CR2, CRA, CR9, DH1, DH3, DH4, E75, E90, E95, F28, F50, F100, Saab 340, YAK40
 
OV735
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RE: Beggars From New EU States In Your City?

Thu Nov 01, 2007 5:30 pm

Yes, we get them regularly. Hold on, we are one of the new EU states...

Seriously though, it's probably a growing problem for the EU states with an uninterrupted past. I can't figure out what's the point of going to another country to beg money from people, but apparently some folks find it a good idea.

Actually Estonia, and Tallinn specifically, gets its share of foreign beggars, mostly from Romania and such, but also an occasional Finn or Brit who have drunk themselves out of money. Big grin

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Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos