Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Another city limits feedings of homeless people in parks

Groups that frequently provide food to the homeless in city parks in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, will be limited to four in-park feedings a year.

The City Council voted 6-1 for the new law after some heated debate. Dozens of residents spoke on the matter, and most said they think the feedings bring more crime.

Those who feed the homeless say it's not them causing the problem. Once a month, Debbie Beaver helps lead her church's youth group to a park, where they hand out bag lunches. "We just walk up to them and ask them if they want a bag lunch," she said. "Whether we feed them or not, they're still there."

Councilman Mike Chestnut agreed. "I think the city is overreacting here," Chestnut said. "I don't see how the problems in the parks are from the feedings."

Other council members said they support the feeding efforts -- but not in city parks.

"The city of Myrtle Beach isn't limiting the feeding of the homeless. We think that's a great thing," Councilman Chuck Martino said. "We're just worried about the location where it's done."

Read the Myrtle Beach Sun News report here.

Update: End Homelessness calls the ordinance "ridiculous."

Another update: Chosen Fast calls it "just so much craziness."

Yet another update: clevelandhomeless suggests that cities target homeless people with laws in order to hide a visible sign of failed leadership. (And mentions the legal battle over Orlando's ordinance.)


Post a Comment

<< Home