Give to the middleman

Group urges support of services rather than direct handouts

The group of local movers and shakers known as Clean & Safe Chico is urging the community to give monetary support to local service providers rather than the downtown down-and-outers who ask for spare change.

According to a press release announcing the campaign, “Studies show that handouts increase the time an individual spends on the streets, delays treatment, and potentially encourages panhandlers to come to our community.”

The organization is made up of representatives from the Jesus Center, Torres Shelter, Chico Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Chico Business Association, Chico Stewardship Network, Chico Police Department and the Greater Chico Homeless Task Force.

“The campaign will make it unnecessary to beg for money for those wanting to change their circumstances,” said Jesus Center Executive Director Bill Such.