How do we limit panhandling?

Patrick Lalley, the Sioux Falls reporter for Forum news took a stab at it;

And maybe that’s true for some. But what people working in social services will tell you is that the panhandlers aren’t the people showing up at the Bishop Dudley Hospitality House, the primary shelter for the homeless in downtown Sioux Falls.

There have been some misconceptions out there as to WHO is panhandling and why.

Most assume that panhandling, at some level, must be illegal. But it’s not, as long as the person is on the sidewalk, not standing in the street obstructing traffic and not harassing the public.

But you can shut off the tap;

But, he (Mayor TenHaken) has said many times, the only way to stop panhandling is to cut off the cash. Give your money to the many agencies whose mission is to help people. The city has signs around downtown that say just that.

South Dakota blogger Scott Ehrisman takes it a step further and suggests that when drivers hand money out of the car window, they should be ticketed for obstructing traffic, not the panhandler.

It’s an intriguing idea because it spreads the social burden.

Maybe the threat of paying even a $10 ticket — same as a parking violation — changes the mental equation.

It’s one thing to give money to a person in a bad way. It’s quite another to have to give it to the government.

I have also suggested this to a Homeless Task Force member as something to consider. It would probably get pushback from the public, but maybe that is a good reason to try it.



8 comments ↓

#1 Very Stable Genius on 09.16.22 at 9:11 pm

Instead of addressing the panhandler problem, I think we need to ask why they exist at a macro level, then work to solve that problem. We need a cure and not a bandage.

#2 l3wis on 09.16.22 at 10:29 pm

I absolutely agree. But that would take a heavy lift from taxpayers and our city council. They are NOT willing to do it. I hate to say it, but there will be many positive solutions that come from the TF, but they will never be implemented. I am guessing in about 10 years DTSF will become a gated community.

#3 VSG on 09.17.22 at 8:05 am

Well, in my estimation it’s a national solution and not a local one. Especially, if other cities are sending their people to SF.

Janklow used to steal jobs from other governors, but now other governors and mayors are sending their people to us out of jealously and the fact that we like to boast about our economic successes. It has become a strange world out there. And if Republicans are so big into workforce development then why don’t they turn these people into workers?

#4 "Woodstock" on 09.17.22 at 8:32 am

“That’s right…. If we do it right, every homeless person and or panhandler in this town could have a job and their own slab home mortgage in five to ten years around here”… #WorkforceDevelopmentBaby!

#5 D@ily Spin on 09.17.22 at 12:07 pm

Panhandling at airports ended when they were forced into booths with signs either side cautioning passers by. Something similar at freeway exit ramps?

#6 D@ily Spin on 09.17.22 at 12:11 pm

And Brett Farve took 4 mil from homeless funds to build an indoor coliseum for his daughters volleyball. Sounds like Huether tennis to me.

#7 Mike Lee Zitterich on 09.17.22 at 3:34 pm

But any such ordinance would just be another un-enforcable ordinance, as it requires the Police to catch t them in the act, and you are not goign to have cops on every street corner, let alone, you really do not want to fine people for being good stewards of society, its a ticking time bomb if we were to accomplish this…I think we want to promote good deeds, so ‘we’ allow for the panhandeling to occur, YOU can personally avoid it by not participating..

#8 scott on 09.19.22 at 8:36 am

i find the fake violin playing more offensive than the homeless panhandling.

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