City of Vernon says panhandling complaints decreasing

By Kiss FM News
August 16, 2016 - 7:18am Updated: August 16, 2016 - 10:00pm

VERNON, B.C. — The City of Vernon says complaints about panhandling are down since a new strategy was introduced two months ago.

Bylaws staff also say panhandlers aren't seeking money on medians, or near the new Kindness Meters as often as before.

Mayor Akbal Mund says the city improved signage to discourage panhandling at intersections, and increased enforcement in areas of concern.

"There could be several other reasons. People could have moved on to other areas. We don't know. They could be moving around right now and I guess September will tell," said Mund.

Councillor Brian Quiring is pleased to hear numbers are down, but says it hasn't solved all the downtown issues.

"I've definitely seen an increase around my office of some fairly undesirable people. I've actually almost seen an increase in transients in Vernon, but I'm glad at least panhandling [is decreasing]," said Quiring.

The city says $525 was donated to the Kindness Meters during July.

The money will be donated to local agencies that provide support for homeless people.

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