MORE THAN 65,000 people have now signed a petition calling to scrap part of a proposed Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) affecting the homeless in Oxford.

The online petition was launched by members of the On Your Doorstep Campaign from Oxford University.

It demands that rough sleeping is removed from the list of antisocial behaviours that could be banned under a proposed PSPO for the city centre.

The proposed measure is due to be discussed this month by Oxford City Council.

Last Wednesday, On Your Doorstep chairman Freya Turner, 20, said the public was clearly “very much engaged” by the issue.

The group was set up last year and is part of Oxford University Student Union, but does not represent the views of all members.

People signing the petition were also able to post their reasons for doing so.

Yasmin Gilders, from Oxford, said: “It may be uncomfortable for you to see someone sleeping rough. It’s more uncomfortable to sleep rough.”

The Porch Steppin’ Stone Centre in Cowley supports homeless and vulnerably-housed people in Oxford.

Project worker Ellie Urben said staff were unanimously against the proposed PSPO.

She said: “As a team we are all against it.

We think it will have a negative impact on the people we work with.”

The proposed PSPO can be used to restrict certain types of behaviour in areas of the city, from busking to pigeon feeding.

One has already been issued by the council, barring under-21s from entering Foresters Tower, Wood Farm unless they are residents or have a good reason.