Drenching the homeless with water to move them on from shop doorways in Auckland has been slammed on social media.
News that some businesses have installed sprinkler systems to keep people from sleeping rough outside their doorways has prompted fresh calls for more to be done to help Auckland’s growing population of homeless.
"They should walk in their shoes for a day or spend a night on Auckland street," Cheryl Edmundson says on the ONE News Facebook page which received more than 1000 comments on the issue.
Donna Ray was disgusted. "It's sad enough having homeless people but a little compassion goes a long way...shop owners shud be disgraced in some way caus yes it's totally inhumane..... uz make me Sick!!!! Money before people is an utter disgrace.”
Channelle Maxine Rickard added: "It was sad to Visit Auckland city & ride about on a tuk tuk and see all the homeless people bedding down for the night in the freezing winter weather and Just block over the glitz and glam of Sky City Casino..... was sad I couldn't help all the homeless people out."
Lisa Carter says the Auckland council has "hiked your rates up through the roof, making your city unaffordable for middle class kiwi's, you have people sleeping on the street, just another international city without a heart for the people that built the city up to".
However others were disappointed at the criticism of New Zealand's biggest city.
"What is with the negative comments about Auckland?? I have been brought up in AUCKLAND!! I dont think i am better than anyone or anywhere else," wrote Kororia Maxwell.
And Jim Wilson was one of many who regard it as a national rather than local problem.
"If 15,000 people are not adequately housed in Auckland there is a major social problem. A job for Andrew Little and his team suggest some possible solutions. Key and his team don't see it as a priority."
"Where is WINZ?" asks Lisa Loader. "Where are the social workers paid to look after these people? Not all people in need of help are going to continually turn up to pointless appointments - and battle bureaucracy - get off your bums and help the people that need it!"
Others felt sympathy for the business owners. Mark Hinge says the police should do more to get the homeless off the streets and make them move on, saying "they are a blight on the city".
Shaz Welly De doesn't agree with the owners tactics but says, "when you turn up to work and the front smells like piss the shop owner is soon to be homeless or bankrupt it is not them who need to step up, its the government."
And Kelly Hayes points out businesses pay rent for premises. "If the front of their stores are continually being left dirty and untidy I can understand why this is happening, but if the people sleeping there clean up each morning there shouldn't be a problem. Business are trying to earn a living too, and they provide jobs."