City to be Sued Over Panhandling Restrictions

Attorney Jeffrey Fogel is filing a lawsuit against the city on behalf of five local panhandlers, Tasha Kates writes in the Daily Progress. The city strengthened its law prohibiting panhandling last summer, prohibiting solicitation of people doing business with vendors or within 50 feet of the crossings. Notably, Mayor Dave Norris—a strong advocate for the homeless—is a defender of the law, believing it to be “modest.”

Fogel argues that the prohibition is a violation of their First Amendment rights, because the law is not content-neutral, but instead prevents people from saying specific things. Whatever you might think about panhandling, this seems like a legal matter worthy of the consideration of the courts.

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