Florida city to jail those caught sitting on sidewalk

People sitting on sidewalk illustration 
By: Debbie Gross 

Politicians are known to be in it for themselves, but now, some of them have become cruel, sub human beings.

A Florida city could soon outlaw a harrowing crime: sitting.

Sitting or lying down on sidewalks or other public rights of way in Clearwater Beach, downtown or in the
East Gateway neighborhood, could get a $500 fine, 60 days in jail or both.

The sitting ban is among a flurry of new ordinances the City Council will consider as part of its crackdown on homeless people.

The city council could also ban sleeping outside, panhandling and bathing in public sinks. Like public sitting, each crime would be grounds for immediate arrest.

The sitting ban is one of the most extreme proposals in a city already known for welding shut public bathrooms, turning off access to water in public areas and discouraging donations to a long-running soup kitchen.

But city leaders said the proposed ordinances, similar to bans enforced in St. Petersburg, San Francisco and Seattle, will give police more authority to clean up areas known for attracting the homeless.



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