Monday, November 12, 2012

What You Need To Know About Panhandlers:
Seminar On Thursday

Lake View Patch did a very informative article about the previous panhandling seminar, which explained what your rights are when it comes to be being approached by a panhandler, and also what a panhandler's rights are.  An excerpt:

"The city's ordinance doesn't keep anyone from standing, sitting, performing music, singing or holding a sign asking for a donation without any vocal request.  It does make the following panhandling acts illegal:
  • Panhandling in any public transportation vehicle or facility, such as a stop on the L.
  • Panhandling in a sidewalk cafe.
  • Panhandling within 10 feet in any direction of the entrance to a bank or currency exchange.
  • Touching a person without his or her consent.
  • Asking for a donation while people are standing in line to enter an establishment.
  • Using a gesture or other communication that would cause a reasonable person to be fearful.
  • Two or more people panhandling together."

You can read the rest of the article here.  For more information, we urge you to attend the seminar on Thursday, which is free, and lasts exactly one hour.  The RSVP information is on the flyer above


  1. Uptown panhandlers are usually the most aggressive. Probably because of the many mental illness agencies & shelters we have here. The panhandlers on Michigan Ave. are more the more professional type.

  2. Unfortunately, in all the instances mentioned, it's a low priority crime and even if you do get a cop at the scene the will just move them along because the paper work ain't worth it

  3. I've been to this. It wasn't what I thought it was going to be. It pretty much is entirely focused on envisioning panhandlers as enemies to business and spends quite literally the entire session on the specific circumstances under which they can be picked up, arrested, and jailed. There was literally no discussion whatsoever about alleviating the underlying causes behind homelessness. To me, that's a ridiculously short-sighted point of view.

  4. Where many mental illness agencies & shelters exist you usually see a neighborhood with more panhandlers and crime as they go hand in hand. They do effect a business and raise many safety issues for residents that have to fight their way through them daily.

  5. Toto: Not really.

    Mike: This seminar is presented by lawyers and police. If you're looking to find out how to deal with the underlying causes of panhandling, there are about a million social services in Uptown who can put on the kind of seminar you were expecting. Not criticizing you, just saying that the reasons for panhandling are best addressed by others.

  6. I see guys breaking these rules all the time.
    You can count on getting hassled at any McDonald's or El station on the north side. They just don't ask, they invade your personal space and won't take no for an answer. I don't carry cash very often, and I would never part with it for a stranger.