Sometimes I wonder who controls the social media of police departments and I sigh. This latest Twitter-gate affair involves West Yorkshire Police who embrace the social web for citizen engagement. However a tasteless tweet resulted in much of their good social media work being clouded by a badly thought-out one.
Article posted originally on TheJournal.ie
POLICE IN WEST Yorkshire has been forced to apologise after shaming a homeless couple by tweeting an image of them with the hashtag #luggagewalkofshame.
The Huddersfield Daily Examiner reports that officers from the Road Policing Unit tweeted a photo of a man and a woman carrying their luggage across the road after the police seized their car for having no insurance.
It’s believed the couple were living in their car when it was taken.
There was backlash to the tweet from members of the public and homeless groups.
The offending tweet was removed from Twitter three hours later after the Examiner newspaper said it asked for comment by the police.
A spokesman for the police told the Huddersfield Examiner that the tweet was “clearly an inappropriate” and said it is looking into the circumstances as to why it has been posted.
“Regardless of any offences people have committed they still deserve their human dignity and we would apologise for the offence this has caused,” said the spokesperson.
The Independent UK also reports a second tweet depicting another homeless person living out of a car, captioned with the hashtag #carinsurancenothomeinsurance, has also since been deleted.