Apparently, feeding the homeless, also known as food sharing, is the newest misdemeanor to hit the street. This is such a growing problem that the National Coalition for the Homeless released a report in October titled Share No More: The Criminalization Efforts to Feed People in Need.
Here are 9 important things you need to know about homeless feeding bans:
- Over the last two years, 21 cities have restricted food sharing. Ten others are currently working to restrict food sharing practices.
- Proponents of food sharing bans believe providing meals to the homeless is a form of enabling.
- A Key West city commissioner, Tony Yaniz, suggested a local soup kitchen should cut back on their services saying, “What we’ve got to do is quit making it cozy . . . let’s not feed them anymore.”
- 57 U.S. cities have attempted to restrict, ban or relocate food sharing. Florida leads the charge with 11 cities on the list, the most of any state in the country.
- Due to increased demand, 78 percent of cities had to reduce the number of times a person could visit the food pantry each month and 66 percent had to turn people away due to lack of resources.
- Those who ignore food-sharing bans can face hefty fines and even jail time for extending compassion to someone that is hungry.
- According to the USDA, 14.3 percent of the U.S. population, which equates to 17.5 million households, were food insecure in 2013. Of those, 6.8 million households were considered as having very low food security — unchanged from the previous two years.
- Permits to feed the homeless in Sacramento, California can be as high as $1,250 and an organization may have a maximum of four permits per year.
- It wasn’t until November 19, 2009, that the United States joined the world consensus that The Right to Food is an international human right.
What does the Bible say about Feeding The Hungry?
What does the Bible say about The Homeless?
What does the Bible say about Hypocrisy?