Hunt on "New" Panhandling Ordinance
Panhandling is an ongoing problem throughout our city, particularly in Downtown Dallas. This type of public nuisance detracts from our efforts to create a safe, vibrant, livable Downtown. Residents tell me panhandlers make them feel unsafe, while business owners tell me they've lost customers as a result of aggressive soliciting.
After working with the Downtown Dallas Association, I'm pleased to report that today the city council voted to prohibit panhandling in Downtown, Uptown, Victory, and Deep Ellum. (We couldn't make the ban citywide because courts have concluded that soliciting money is protected by the First Amendment, so the government must have a compelling reason to infringe on such a basic right. Here, we're trying to protect the region's economic engine, Downtown Dallas.)