Auckland’s phoney homeless make $100 a day on the streets

Auckland Council has announced it will count the city’s rough sleepers to fully grasp the scale of homelessness. We took to the streets to learn about those on society’s edge in the city’s centre, whose current way of life the council hopes to eliminate.

Before sunrise, every morning, a group of men gather in downtown Auckland. They’ve been doing this since before the SkyTower was built in the 1990s. One’s lost a leg in that time.

The quartet make chairs out of bread crates cushioned with cardboard boxes and play Fleetwood Mac via a bluetooth speaker.

Someone always drops off a bag of day-old meat pies just after 7am. Buddies the men consider brothers walk past, getting fist bumps and a pie if they’re lucky. A dishevelled, jittery old fella named Joseph staggers over and slips $20 to one of the seated men.

Its recipient – Mark Phillip – carefully moves two cans of Kingfisher beer from under his hoody to behind his bread crate, stands up, and sets off for the convenience store across the road.

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Source: Stuff NZ