Officials Hope Downtown Coin Boxes Deter Panhandling

by admin on July 18, 2011

A new program in downtown Louisville allows people to put their spare change in several coin boxes rather than give the money to panhandlers.

The program is called “Positive Change” and the money collected in the blue containers will help fund area homeless groups. But city officials and downtown boosters hope it will also discourage panhandlers by drying up their source of revenue.

Louisville Downtown Management District spokesman Ken Herndon says the majority of people asking for money are not homeless.

“We know basically who the regular people are that we see on the street. And for the most part the folks who are panhandling are either feeding a substance abuse problem or they’re just taking your money and putting it in their pocket. And so what we want to do is try to give a conduit through which a very generous public can make sure their well-intended dollars are going to the people they intend them to serve,” he says.

Supporters say downtown workers and visitors will be more inclined to stick their change in the box, and less likely to hand it out to panhandlers. Downtown Management District employees will collect the money from the boxes weekly.

For the full interview see below.

Audio MP3

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