Las Vegas Bans Feeding The Homeless In Public Parks


Providing food for free or a nominal fee to the indigent in parks has been banned in Las Vegas, says the Las Vegas Review-Journal. The measure is an attempt to stop “mobile soup kitchens,” which residents say attract the homeless and render the city facilities unusable by families. The American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada called the ordinance blatantly unconstitutional, unenforceable and the latest attempt by the city to hide and harass the homeless instead of constructively addressing their plight. Said an American Civil Liberties Union lawyer: “I’ve heard of some rather strange and extreme measures from other cities. I’ve never heard of something like this. It’s mind-boggling.”

Mayor Oscar Goodman, who has been a vocal advocate of cracking down on the homeless in city parks, dismissed questions about how marshals, who patrol city parks, will identify the homeless in order to enforce the ordinance, the violation of which would be a misdemeanor. “Certain truths are self-evident,” Goodman said. “You know who’s homeless. This is not a punishment; this is to help people,” he said. “The people who provide sandwiches have good intentions, but they’re enabling people not to get the help that is needed.”


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