Fines for littering in Sunderland should be even tougher, say readers
Sunderland councillors are set to vote on doubling the fines for anyone caught littering in the city - but readers say they don't go far enough.
Six out of 10 people who took part in the Echo's online poll said they didn't think plans to increase the penalty for dropping litter from £75 to £150 are not tough enough.
There could also be harsher punishments for those who daub graffiti, and prople who hand out leaflets, cards, newspapers or takeaway menus and other promotional leaflets which are often discarded.
The proposals to increase fines will be discussed by Sunderland City Council’s cabinet meeting on Wednesday - but Echo readers have already given their backing to the idea.
Ken Bird wrote on our Facebook page: "Last year I was in the USA. The fines there are $1,000 for littering the highways, and I didn't see any litter. People there are proud of their country."
Jenifer Thompson said littering simply wasn't a problem in years gone by, as people took a pride in there they live.
"Keep Britain tidy, that was what we were told. It worked when I was young and I still take all my rubbish home."
Phil Smurthwaite said: "If people bagged their rubbish up instead of placing empty wrappers and suchlike loose in the bins then there wouldn't be any mess."
Audrey Brand added: "The council tries not to enforce fines - it's up to parents to teach your kids to put rubbish in bins. "
Sarah Jane Stewart Frame said more bins would discourage people from becoming litterbugs.
"It doesn't help when there's not enough bins when you are having a walk. You can go for miles until you find one. I normally keep my rubbish in my pocket or bag until I find one."
Adeleine Stubbs added: "I hope they follow through with this, as I see people throwing litter down regularly, but I've never ever seen any one about to charge them."
Carol Walia-Modral wrote: "Anyone that litters should be fined, there's no need for it. I don't know were people's brains are to wreck the area they live in."
Marty Rome said schools should do more to influence young people's behaviour: "I'm baffled as to why we don't start teaching kids at school about the effect on the planet and about recycling. All it would take is a hour or two a week."
Peter Ord offered a view from afar: "I'm currently in Costa Teguise in Lanzarote and the place is spotless - makes you ashamed to be British."
Lorna Swallow said everyone should do their bit to keep the city tidy: "How can you police all the culprits? Impossible. People walk past the litter and think "well I didnt drop it " but we could all just pick something up and put in a bin.
William Sawyer has a particular bugbear about people who throw litter from cars: "That vehicle should be taken off them and scrapped."
Ian Humphries said fast food outlets also have a responsibility to try to keep the environment spic and span.
"If you live next to a Greggs or McDonald’s etc the rubbish from their packaging is thrown everywhere. I think these companies could do more to make people more responsible about chucking their coffee cups, paper bags away instead of binning them.
"They could even send their employees out a few blocks around their premises to pick up their packaging - they do in other countries."