How do you, personally, handle the local panhandler?

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    Aug 24, 2015 2:13 AM GMT

    It might not be so prevalent in smaller cities but here in mecca Los Angeles, panhandling is either an epidemic or I am just noticing it more and more in my immediate area.

    I have a feeling that cheap public transportation, such as the Metro rail lines and stations tend to move people around from neighborhood to neighborhood including the areas homeless populations. We all know the big homeless encampment is downtown LA's 'skid row district'. Metro train lines starts downtown, and go out east, west, south, north of the city.

    I am seeing panhandling at every corner, freeway exit/entrances, most 7-11 stores, CVS stores, major grocery chains, outside of banks, in the fast food drive thru lanes.

    It would appear once a location is deemed a "hot spot", the spot gets reported back to the homeless shelters and skid row district where these people make their way to the spot via the public transportation system. By "hot spot", I mean people willingly give away their money to panhandlers which creates a frenzy among the homeless.

    There is one 7-11 store by me that one homeless person used to hang out in front of and at night go away, local LAPD take their break or do shift change at this store. This store as now become a homeless panhandling mecca during the day, and these people are not shy about approaching you for money. In your face, they even open the store door for you!!!!. The store operators don't seem to mind unless customers start to complain I guess. Having LAPD there at night don't even scare them off anymore!

    I hope I never end up like some of these people, homelessness in Los Angeles is a huge problem, downtown LA has been in the midst of a revitalization renaissance where wealthier people are moving into the new residential lofts and housing being built. There are stores going up and Wholefoods markets to attract the young, wealthy. This is forcing the skid row district people out of their encampments and into the city at large, where we find them asking for money all over the city, including the ones that make their way to posh Beverly Hills.

    It is difficult enough making ends meet yourself with rising price of EVERYTHING, let alone giving your money away to somebody who's going to buy drugs or alcohol with it. I just don't give them any. I just wish I was extremely wealthy in order to help these people in a productive way, those that really need the help. Its getting really desperate, 2 weeks ago, on my Tuesday Taco night, the drive thru at Del Taco, I was approached in my car by some 'homeless' guy, carrying a skate board, asking me to buy him a taco. He came right up to my window, in my face. The drive thru order clerk heard our conservation which I told the guy to back away from my car. I then reported this to Del Taco store management at the window.

    Been in LA 14 years, I have never seen it this bad icon_confused.gif

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    Aug 24, 2015 2:21 AM GMT
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    Aug 24, 2015 2:40 AM GMT
    theantijock said




    A HUGE problem here in LALA land






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    Aug 24, 2015 2:59 AM GMT
    I have only once given money to a panhandler. However I do routinely buy food for the ones that tell me they're hungry.
    Here in Montreal I can't help but chuckle about the ones that sit in front of the liquor store begging for money.
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    Aug 24, 2015 3:15 AM GMT
    Wyndahoi saidI have only once given money to a panhandler. However I do routinely buy food for the ones that tell me they're hungry.
    Here in Montreal I can't help but chuckle about the ones that sit in front of the liquor store begging for money.



    I know, if you frequent the same store yourself, you start to see the same panhandlers. I had a new panhandler the other day at my 7-11, standing in front of the door, directing me to pull into the parking space he was standing in front of, sort of like a valet or parking lot attendant would do, then I laughed and said, "what, are you parking cars now"?. I guess he was expecting a tip icon_lol.gif

    You have to 'keep your cool' around these people, most of them are harmless and just want to get money, but some of them do scare me, especially when they could be high on some drug or hold you up with a weapon. You do have to be cautious around them. I don't buy them food either, I donate to food bank first.





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    Aug 24, 2015 3:46 AM GMT
    18_3-sm.jpg
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    Aug 24, 2015 3:49 AM GMT
    Sometimes, I will give them some change or even dollars if I pass them, it just depends on the vibe I get from them. Some seem to be in need and others seem scammy.
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    Aug 24, 2015 3:57 AM GMT
    I don't give money to panhandlers (and I do feel bad about it) but I give charity regularly to local organizations that help and advocate for people who are struggling with homelessness, food insecurity and poverty.
  • AttisXVI

    Posts: 293

    Aug 24, 2015 4:08 AM GMT
    How do I handle a pan handler?

    I don't. Like Dione Warwick I walk on by.
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    Aug 24, 2015 4:19 AM GMT
    2Bnaked said18_3-sm.jpg



    +1 icon_lol.gif

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    Aug 24, 2015 7:20 AM GMT
    I can't tell which are the really needy ones, and which are scamming - so I never give money to them. Instead, I contribute to charities that feed the homeless, etc.
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    Aug 24, 2015 7:44 AM GMT
    i never carry cash. No other reason than my cell phone case is limited to a drivers license and 2 other cards
  • bobbobbob

    Posts: 2812

    Aug 24, 2015 8:41 AM GMT


    I never give to the ones asking for money and we have an ass load of them here.

    There's one guy who's been camping out at the mouth of the bayou for FOUR years now. Every time I'm coming in on the boat I stop and talk with him and see what he needs. He never asks for shit and won't take money. He's always clean,shaves everyday, and does some of the most amazing pen and ink drawings I've ever seen. He won't take money for them but when I take him groceries or whatever he insists I pick out one to take home. Once in a while I've talked him into coming to the house for showers but the number one reason he comes is to borrow books. My dogs and cats love him so he passes the nice test. I have never been able to talk him into staying here at the house even during hellacious storms. Last week I took him a new 24' x 30' camo tarp to catch rain water.... he insisted I take a drawing he'd done plus squash and corn he'd grown.

    He's pretty low key. Once when he was showering I dug in his wallet for his whole name and info.... The fucker is a wikipedia name from his complicity with the success of Debra Harry in the early MTV days.
  • wellwell

    Posts: 2265

    Aug 24, 2015 2:19 PM GMT
    ... I never miss change in my pocket; in fact, it is a nuisance. I always wish them good luck, and effort!

    Because, EFFORT is the universal cure for everything!
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    Aug 24, 2015 3:22 PM GMT
    HikerSkier saidI can't tell which are the really needy ones, and which are scamming - so I never give money to them. Instead, I contribute to charities that feed the homeless, etc.


    Yes, if you feel the need to give, give directly to charities that work with the homeless. You only exacerbate the problem by giving directly to them on the street.
  • DCEric

    Posts: 3713

    Aug 24, 2015 5:30 PM GMT
    One of the best things I have ever seen. I saw them in some side street in Sevilla, Spain in 2005.

    LazyBeggars.com
  • FitBlackCuddl...

    Posts: 802

    Aug 24, 2015 5:36 PM GMT
    duluthrunner saidI don't give money to panhandlers (and I do feel bad about it) but I give charity regularly to local organizations that help and advocate for people who are struggling with homelessness, food insecurity and poverty.


    Which organizations are these?
  • FitBlackCuddl...

    Posts: 802

    Aug 24, 2015 5:38 PM GMT
    HikerSkier saidI can't tell which are the really needy ones, and which are scamming - so I never give money to them. Instead, I contribute to charities that feed the homeless, etc.


    Charities are BUSINESSES, with employees to pay. How much of your donations do you think reaches the homeless?
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    Aug 24, 2015 6:00 PM GMT
    ELNathB saidHow do you, personally, handle the local panhandler?
    TalktotheHand.gif~c200
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    Aug 24, 2015 6:04 PM GMT
    How do you, personally, handle the local panhandler?


    Normally with latex gloves.
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    Aug 24, 2015 6:09 PM GMT
    Radd saidHow do you, personally, handle the local panhandler?


    Normally with latex gloves.
    Proctology.jpg
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    Aug 24, 2015 9:04 PM GMT
    FitBlackCuddler said
    HikerSkier saidI can't tell which are the really needy ones, and which are scamming - so I never give money to them. Instead, I contribute to charities that feed the homeless, etc.


    Charities are BUSINESSES, with employees to pay. How much of your donations do you think reaches the homeless?


    It's still better than giving it directly to the vagrants who are usually drunk, pissing in public, blocking the sidewalks, harassing people, littering, etc. By not giving the money on the street it forces them to seek refuge at a shelter where they will get shelter, food, and access to other services. Many don't want to go to shelters because they won't get services if drunk. Giving them money and food on the street only incentivizes them to stay on the streets.
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    Aug 24, 2015 9:51 PM GMT
    FitBlackCuddler said
    HikerSkier saidI can't tell which are the really needy ones, and which are scamming - so I never give money to them. Instead, I contribute to charities that feed the homeless, etc.


    Charities are BUSINESSES, with employees to pay. How much of your donations do you think reaches the homeless?

    Duh.

    I don't give to just any charity. I check them all out on guidestar.com first, and give only to ones that don't have high salaries, or lots of employees, or lots of expense. (Like who needs to give to the American Red Cross, that paid a politician's wife $1 million+ to be CEO?)

    In San Francisco, I give to (among others) St. Anthony's (essentially run by volunteers), where 100% of my donation goes to feed people.

    I Avoid places like Glide Memorial (which doesn't their file tax returns anymore, but when they did, showed that their Rev. Williams got over $500,000)
  • FitBlackCuddl...

    Posts: 802

    Aug 24, 2015 10:01 PM GMT
    UndercoverMan said
    FitBlackCuddler said
    HikerSkier saidI can't tell which are the really needy ones, and which are scamming - so I never give money to them. Instead, I contribute to charities that feed the homeless, etc.


    Charities are BUSINESSES, with employees to pay. How much of your donations do you think reaches the homeless?


    It's still better than giving it directly to the vagrants who are usually drunk, pissing in public, blocking the sidewalks, harassing people, littering, etc. By not giving the money on the street it forces them to seek refuge at a shelter where they will get shelter, food, and access to other services. Many don't want to go to shelters because they won't get services if drunk. Giving them money and food on the street only incentivizes them to stay on the streets.


    Not all homeless are these folk flying signs on the freeways or sitting in front of stores/coffeeshops. As for shelters, they are JUST *BUSINESSES*. Homeless folk are just the fodder used to generate money. They are infrastructures that meet basic federal guidelines so that they can get part of the federal largess.

    Incentivizes them to stay on the streets? Yes--SOME. The young...the drifters from state to state, country to country. But they are not the majority. The rest of us cannot get off the street because no one will hire us. And because there is so much $$ to be made, the United Ways, Salvation Armies and EVERYONE ELSE do nothing to assist a homeless person with work.

    It is not as you may think it is.
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    Aug 24, 2015 10:04 PM GMT
    FitBlackCuddler said
    HikerSkier saidI can't tell which are the really needy ones, and which are scamming - so I never give money to them. Instead, I contribute to charities that feed the homeless, etc.


    Charities are BUSINESSES, with employees to pay. How much of your donations do you think reaches the homeless?


    Funds and grants covering operational costs are separate from those that are donated or are used for services. Unless stated, money from an individual donated to a charity cannot be used pay employees/rent/bills/etc., otherwise it would violate the organization's 501(c)(3) non-profit status.

    If you ever have a question about how funds are being distributed, you can contact the charity directly and request a copy of their IRS Form 990. From that you can see how much is being spent on operational costs, employee wages, what was utilized on services/programs, and even how much of a grant was passed onto other charities. All of this information is open to the public. It is a standard request, and most non-profits will have a pdf of the forms sent off to you within a week.

    Barring that, you can contact the IRS directly, or download it from a site like GuideStar - though the latter tends to be a year or two behind. For this, all you need is the name of the charity and their Tax ID number, which should be available on their website.