Fining people who go out and feed the homeless is not the answer to ending homelessness. More and more cities are passing laws or cracking down on people and groups who take the effort and do what humans are suppose to do - take care of each other. The reasons that cities are so called "cracking down" is because they say that if you feed the homeless, you encourage them to stay homeless.
Where all of a sudden has this come from? Some states/cities have adopted this idea that since the overall population of homelessness has been decreasing since 2007, that we (our nation) can do away with homelessness altogether. The reality is we can't until some other criteria is met: more drug rehab places, more VA hospitals and more help for those with disabilities. Most families that were displaced during the recession now have some type of housing due to groups like HUD and Habitat for Humanity but there are still a significant number of homeless people on the streets or in shelters any given night.
Cities should reach out to these people that go out and feed the homeless and use them to find out what the homeless need and how to meet those needs. Then we can start getting the rest of the homeless off the streets. The majority that are still homeless are lost and need someone else to help them find their way. Saying NO to feeding them and gaining their friendship and trust is not the answer.
We will never wipe out homelessness totally but we can bring the numbers way down if we embrace those that are willing to help the homeless instead of slapping them on the wrists.
Some Facts as of January 2014:
About 15 percent of the homeless population – 84,291 - are considered "chronically homeless” individuals (A person who has been on street at least a year or more, or has been homeless at least four times within three years and has a disability.)
About 9 percent of homeless people- 49,933 - are veterans
As of January 2014, nearly a quarter of all homeless people were children under the age of 18.