Fresno city, faith leaders speaking out against proposed “STOP” ordinance

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“Is that who Fresno is,” Fresno City Council member Esmeralda Soria asked Wednesday? 

Soria questioning the proposed “STOP” ordinance, or “Safe Transfer of Objects to Pedestrians,” which would criminalize handing anything out of a car, to anyone on the street.

“One constituent quipped to me this morning, that we should really be calling this the anti-good Samaritan act,” councilmember Nelson Esparza said. 

The group arguing the proposal is a lawsuit waiting to happen, and the government should stay out of people’s pockets.

Fresno City Council Vice President Miguel Arias, threatening funding.

“If the police chief has the resources to fine good Samaritans for this ordinance, then it’s clear to me that the police chief in this city, does not need any additional resources in this upcoming budget, for the police department,” Arias said.

We found Frank across the street from city hall. He told us he’s homeless; we told him about our story.

Frank says, donations help him survive, and taking those away…

“It’s just tightening up the noose around the, throat of homeless people,” Frank said.

Minutes away, volunteers prepare hundreds of hot daily meals, served at the Fresno Rescue Mission, which also provides care and addiction services.

“Homelessness, food insufficiency, whatever it is, and those are the needs that we’re really trying to meet,” Fresno Rescue Mission Chief Development Officer Deborah Torres said.

Torres wanted to remain nuetral but says, it’s important to look at a homeless person’s longterm problems.

“If we meet their basic need, there’s not really a need to change the environment or the situation,” Torres said.

That bill will be introduced tomorrow at 3 p.m.

If passed, this group urged Fresno Mayor Lee Brand veto the ordinance.

Reporting at Fresno City Hall, Megan Rupe.

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