An action plan is being put into place immediately to reduce unsafe panhandling on Winnipeg streets.
Mayor Brian Bowman announced Friday he has partnered with community organizations to outline short-term and long-term solutions to panhandling on boulevards and amongst traffic.
“As presented in my State of the City address earlier this year, unsafe panhandling is a growing concern for many citizens in Winnipeg,” Bowman said.
One of the solutions includes utilizing “low-cost, physical elements” on boulevards to prevent panhandling.
End Homelessness Winnipeg and the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ are co-leading a group to map out a plan to curb the problem.
Other short-term solutions include an outreach program to engage panhandlers, and an employment pilot program to provide panhandlers with positions within the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ and help to eventually land full-time work.
Plans are utilized at no additional cost and by pooling existing resources from the organizations involved. They will be reassessed for their effectiveness once the pilot programs conclude. The focus will then turn to long-term solutions.
“By bringing organizations with different insights together, we have developed a plan to move forward, in hopes of addressing and reducing unsafe panhandling by better assisting those in need,” Bowman added.