Editorial Board's take: Mill Avenue and homelessness don't mix, say some business owners

We've all seen it happen while walking on Mill Avenue: Someone asks for money or help. Business owners and the city of Tempe have clashed over the treatment of homeless people on sidewalks, especially on Mill Avenue.

As the State Press recently reported, a January 2015 ordinance banned blocking a "public right of way" unless it's "for a medical emergency." Some Tempe businesses are calling for stricter rules because they feel panhandlers are driving customers away. These owners feel that the presence of homeless people makes customers unable to access their stores from Mill Avenue. 

Yet, the issue is much more complex than both sides make it out to be. It's a divisive issue that even our editorial couldn't come to a consensus on. We've shared our opinions with you in the video below. Let us know how you think the issue should be handled.

Opinion from The State Press on Vimeo.


Want to join the conversation? Send an email to opiniondesk.statepress@gmail.com. Keep letters under 300 words and be sure to include your university affiliation. Anonymity will not be granted.

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