Benefits Street residents moved after receiving death threats

Fri, 24/01/2014 - 11:50 -- nick

Residents of James Turner Street in Birmingham, the setting for controversial Channel 4 programme Benefits Street, have been moved to other areas after receiving death threats.

The Mirror is reporting that some of those living there have been threatened on Twitter and other social media, leading the local council to rehouse them for their own safety.

This was confirmed by a Mirror source who said: "After we named the street in the show, some of the participants in Benefits Street have had to be rehomed. They are vulnerable and we have a duty of care towards them.”

According to residents, the road has become a sick tourist attraction with people visiting to throw insults.

Kate Dudek, 27, said: “Since it was on TV, there have been so any people coming up and down. I have a seven-year-old daughter who I don’t let out any more because I feel it isn’t safe.”

Twitter is still showing many threats, with @jbass1010 writing "Haha benefits street is horrendous ! Kill them all and rebuild the street", with @leeeeanneeee wrote "they are all a waste of space just bloody kill them!", while @bethanymorris tweeted ""Full time dad" kill it before it breeds again".

Controversial footballer Joey Barton weighed in on this last point, tweeting to his 2.4 million followers: "“Strong evidence to support the breeding licence theory.”

Forced sterilisation was a policy pursued by Adolf Hitler before and during the second world war.

West Midlands Police is currently investigating a number of abusive tweets, although there is no suggestion that Barton's is among them.

A Channel 4 spokesman claimed that staff were still active in the street, although it didn't specify what form this took:

“The production team are continuing to provide support where it is sought.”

The fact that some families have had to be found new houses suggests that this support has not been effective or sufficient.

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