Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, wasn’t kidding about its new law, which established strict regulations on where organizations can feed the city’s homeless residents. Two local pastors and 90-year-old Arnold Abbott were cited for violating the ordinance Tuesday, and each face up to 60 days in prison and a $500 fine.
The city has about 10,000 homeless residents, but as of last month, outdoor food stands need permits or special permission and can’t be closer than 500 feet to a residential property. (Owners must also provide toilets.) Proponents of the law say that distributing food to the needy is “sanctioning homelessness.”
These restrictions don’t sit well with Abbott, who runs a nonprofit called Love Thy Neighbor, which he founded after his wife’s death. He intends to be out there feeding the homeless again on Wednesday, whether the police cite him again or not.
“I have tried to abide by their regulations, but we just are not able to provide a port-a-potty,” he told Fox News. “I believe that is the job of the municipality, anyway.”