Compassionate Americans may feel the desire to give money to those less fortunate who ask for money on the streets, but a police department in Wyoming recently showed why we should think twice before doing so.
After arresting a panhandler for public intoxication on July 22, Cheyenne police took to Facebook page to show how he was using the money others had generously given him to take care of himself.
The man collected $234.94 in just a few hours panhandling, the police said, according to WTSP. Obviously, instead of using that money for food and shelter as it was likely intended by the givers, the panhandler used it to fuel his alcohol addiction.
Police pleaded with the public to donate directly to local charities, such as shelters, that would serve the city’s homeless population in a much more effective way.
“Yesterday, July 22, we arrested a transient for public intoxication. This is a person we frequently deal with, but we want to illustrate that there are better ways to help the transient population than to give them money for panhandling,” the department wrote on Facebook.
“This person collected $234.94 in just a few hours of asking for money,” the post continued. “Rather than feeding someone’s alcohol addiction, you can donate directly to local charities such as the Comea Shelter where your money will assist the homeless in a much more effective way.”
There are plenty of shelters, soup kitchens and other services for those who are homeless or less fortunate that we can donate to in order to ensure that any money we choose to give goes to a worthy cause.
Giving directly to a person in the grip of an alcohol or drug addiction could be worse than not helping them at all.
It could well be helping pay for the drink or dose that will kill them.
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