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Hearing on Panhandling Tonight at Yakima City Hall – Mayor’s Blog

The Yakima City Council will listen to testimony from the public at a 7:00 p.m. hearing at Yakima City Hall. There is a proposal on the table to strengthen the current ordinance on panhandling.

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Here is some information from the Center for Problem Oriented Policing:

Most evidence confirms that panhandling is not lucrative, although some panhandlers clearly are able to subsist on a combination of panhandling money, government benefits, private charity, and money from odd jobs such as selling scavenged materials or plasma. How much money a panhandler can make varies depending on his or her skill and personal appeal, as well as on the area in which he or she solicits. Estimates vary from a couple of dollars (U.S.) a day on the low end, to $20 to $50 a day in the mid-range, to about $300 a day on the high end. Women—especially those who have children with them—and panhandlers who appear to be disabled tend to receive more money. For this reason, some panhandlers pretend to be disabled and/or war veterans. Others use pets as a means of evoking sympathy from passersby. Panhandlers’ regular donors can account for up to half their receipts.

Panhandlers spend much of their money on alcohol, drugs and tobacco, although some money does go toward food, transportation and toiletries. Panhandlers rarely save any money, partly because they risk having it stolen, and partly because their primary purpose is to immediately buy alcohol or drugs.


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