The decision to donate money is a personal one. Many of us give thoughtful consideration to assisting others through support of worthy causes. None of us, however, should be subject to aggressive, unwanted monetary solicitation on our streets.
A new law prohibiting unwanted monetary solicitation, or panhandling, went into effect on Nov. 9, 2012. Monetary solicitation is the act of asking an individual, either verbally or by gesture, for an immediate distribution of money or anything of monetary value.
Atlanta Police officers will be vigilant about violations and stand ready to enforce the new law. We believe the law strikes a balance as a reasonable, humane and enforceable way to stop aggressive monetary solicitation. Penalties for violating this law include community service, monetary fines and/or imprisonment. It is against the law to solicit money in the following places:
Within 15 feet* of:
- an automated teller machine (ATM)
- a parking lot pay box
- the entrance or exit of a building
- a line for entry to an event venue, business or other building
- a bus, rail or subway station
- a taxi stand
*The prohibition applies only to that portion of the fifteen feet located on public property.
It is against the law to solicit money in the following ways:
- Blocking the path or passage of the person solicited
- Following alongside the person solicited so that they cannot get away from the solicitor
- Using profane or abusive language, either during the solicitation or following refusal
- Continuing to bother a person after they have refused the solicitation verbally or by gesture
- Making any statement or gesture which could be perceive d as a threat
- Touching the person solicited
|09/25/12||Mayor Kasim Reed Announces Support of Substitute Panhandling Ordinance|