Does Panhandling Make a City Less Attractive to Tourists? [POLL]
Panhandling in Portland is causing friction with the growth of tourism in Maine's largest city.
Most of us have been in the uncomfortable situation of sitting at a red light, with someone asking for money in the median beside you. Some are legitimately homeless and have nowhere else to turn for food. Of course, there's others who are looking for cash for other actives.
Panhandling has been a hot topic in Portland over the past months. Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court declared that bans on panhandling are unconstitutional. With panhandlers more visible in the city, some are concerned the practice may make the city less attractive to visitors.
Some visitors from bigger cities see panhandling everyday, thus say they don't even notice. Others say the practice makes tourists uncomfortable.
One idea for helping the city's growing homeless population is repurpose parking meters as 'giving stations.' The money could then be collected and distributed to the needy on a regular schedule.
What are your thoughts?