Allow Food Not Bombs Myrtle Beach to Feed the Hungry

Because of ordinance 2009-20, that outlaws public feedings, the City of Myrtle Beach is threatening the volunteers of Food not Bombs with arrest if they continue to feed the hungry. Over 1,500 people live on the streets of Horry County and nearly two dozen homeless citizens lost their lives in the Myrtle Beach area in the past year alone. Through this action, the city of Myrtle Beach is committing a crime against humanity. The ordinance not only criminalizes hunger, but also human kindness, by penalizing all individuals aiding groups that feed homeless people in public parks. Help us repeal ordinance 2009-20.

Background:

The City Council Myrtle Beach, South Carolina adopted an ordinance in 2009 that restricts food sharing with homeless people in public parks. Although permits are free, groups may only obtain one four times a year. The city said the law was designed to make sure everyone who wants to use public parks gets the chance to do so. However, the ordinance has been quite clearly crafted to specifically restrict food sharing with homeless people, while being careful to create exemptions for organizations & individuals that are not already facing the difficulties of social & economic marginalization. In the simplest terms, the ordinance 2009-20 only affects those who need help the most.

The country is facing the most extreme economic crisis since the Great Depression with over one half of all Americans struggling to survive according to the latest U.S. Census dat. Over 1,500 people live on the streets of Horry County and nearly two dozen homeless citizens lost their lives in the Myrtle Beach area in the past year alone. Through this action, the city of Myrtle Beach is committing a crime against humanity. The ordinance not only criminalizes hunger, but also human kindness, by penalizing all individuals aiding groups that feed homeless people in public parks.

Currently, the City of Myrtle Beach is threatening the volunteers of Food not Bombs with arrest if they continue to feed the hungry and work for peace. The United Nations, Amnesty International, the National Coalition for the Homeless, and the National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty are among the groups that have called for an end of the arrests of Food Not Bombs participants.

"A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death." Martin Luther King, Jr.

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