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Texas man ticketed for feeding people experiencing homelessness

Houston police ticketed a volunteer for feeding residents without homes after the city created rules regulating who can provide free food outdoors.
File - People experiencing homelessness Thursday Nov. 9, 2017 near downtown Houston, Texas.
Posted at 9:43 PM, Mar 02, 2023

A Texas man was ticketed in Houston for giving food to people experiencing homelessness outside of a public library in the city. 

In 2012 the city put rules in place governing who is allowed to provide free food while outdoors to people who need it. 

The city said it supports free food services, and gives details on what the city will allow for a charitable food service provider in the Houston. 

The city's health department set up a website to approve anyone who wishes to give food to the needy, and the city has to sign off on the action.  

Nick Cooper, a volunteer with Food Not Bombs told the Associated Press, “That was a moment last night we had been waiting for for 11 years,” he said. 

Cooper said, “One of our volunteers actually got a ticket for this law, which gives us the opportunity to challenge it in court.”

In 2011 an appeals court sided with the organization over a similar case in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.