Vox pops: Should spitting and chewing gum littering be fined?

No spitting and chewing gum. Pic: goudlasspics, Flickr

EastLondonlines asked locals about spitting in public and chewing gum littering after Croydon and Lewisham have taken the initiative to fine members of the public for such actions.

Pic: Chloe Hirst



Anastasio Salvadore, 53, electrician, Croydon

“The kids sit on benches and smoke and spit- I think its disgusting. I think the spitting ban would improve society. Spitting is part of a youth culture in Croydon, kids think they’re hard or cool if they spit. I think a penalty is a good idea to stop them spitting.”

Pic: Chloe Hirst


Franko Baccino, 74, retired, Croydon

“I think that the ban on spitting is a good idea but I also think that it is important to educate young people so they know that spitting is wrong. Another idea is to remove all footage of spitting from children’s TV so that kids know that its not acceptable behaviour”

Pic: Chirsty Lam

Una Coogan, 49, student, Hackney

“I think spitting in public should be avoided. If you are ill you may need to do it, but generally people should not do it.  I think the government definitely needs to fine people who throw chewing gum on the street. People tend to be careful about the big things, but not the little things. I totally support the government to fine these people in theory, but I don’t know how they will actually see these people and fine them.”

Pic: Christy Lam

Evane Beritze, 28, Social Worker, Hackney

“It is not hygienic to spit in public and it looks so rude as well. I am not judgemental on this issue, as sometimes people are not to offend, but sometimes people simply have to spit. Other countries, such as Germany, have already had similar laws. The government should use other tools to educate people to keep the environment clean. I don’t think they can actually control this behaviour by imposing this law. I believe it is a long process to educate people how to behave. It comes from family in terms of how to behave. It’s just not possible to fine everyone who throws chewing gums.”

Pic: Christy Lam

Martin Violleau, 23, Art Management Student, Tower Hamlets

“It is disgusting to spit in public but it doesn’t shock me at all as there are a lot of people doing it. I think there are more important things that we should spend our money on, instead of arresting people who throw chewing gum in the street. There are more serious things that we should care more about than a chewing gum. The government should put more bins to help people put their things in there.”

Pic: Christy Lam

Malin Svensson, 27, Sociology Student, Tower Hamlets

“I suppose it is quite gross to spit in public, but it depends on how you are doing it. If people have to do so I don’t really mind. It doesn’t look nice, obviously, when anything is thrown on the floor, no matter if it is spitting, chewing gum or rubbish. But to fine people just because of littering gum is taking it too far. People who smoke throw their cigarettes on the floor as well. It is hard for the government to do anything about that. I don’t think they can tackle the problem through a fine, and it will be difficult to catch everyone who litters chewing gum on the floor.”

By Christy Lam and Chloe Hirst

Leave a Reply