Begging on the East London Line is a massive problem right now. I usually have at least 4 or 5 on my trains during a shift.
BTP and Met are doing a lot to tackle this, but it’s tricky as the Sgt has said above. There is a particular few that are aggressive and cause issues. They think they’re clever but they stick out like a sore thumb when flicking through the internal cameras. Yes, drivers can see internal CCTV throughout the train, there literally is nowhere to hide on them. We can follow a person from one end to the other. I once directed a couple of TravelSafe Officers through a busy train to take one off over the PA. “Forward, forward, left, one with the blue jacket”.
I try to discourage them by doing an announcement along the lines of “Begging anywhere on the railway network is an offence under the railway byelaws. Do not give any money to any person on this train.”
A joint working group has been set up including the local councils and Metropolitan Police with the aim of putting a problem solving plan in place. In the mean time if you see a beggar on a London Overground train, text the BTP with time and location to 61016. Drivers and station staff also do the same through company methods. It’s more a case of trying to offer help to those that really need it and then to encourage those that aren’t after money for “a room” to move on.
So to recap, London Overground / TfL / BTP are very much aware of the rise in beggars on the East London Line and are doing something about it, it just may take a little time, after all, they are humans just like us and regardless of their situation it needs to be done in a proper and sensitive manner.