90-Year-Old Man Arrested For Feeding The Homeless

Fort Lauderdale, Fla.’s new ordinance regarding public food sharing was put to the test on Sunday when city police arrested two pastors and a 90-year-old advocate as they passed out food to the homeless.

Arnold Abbott, 90, has been feeding the Fort Lauderdale homeless for 20 years, according to Local10. Along with Christian pastors Dwayne Black and Mark Sims, he faces up to 60 days in jail and a fine of $500.

Abbott, who runs a nonprofit group called Love Thy Neighbor Inc, sued Fort Lauderdale in 1999 when the city tried to stop him from feeding the homeless on Fort Lauderdale Beach, says Local10. Abbott won that lawsuit, and he says that he’ll go back to court again if he has to. He also says he won’t stop feeding the homeless.

I don’t intend to stop feeding the homeless… That’s man’s inhumanity to man and I’m not going to be part of that,” Abbott told the Sun-Sentinel after the new ordinance was passed on Oct. 22.

The limits on food sharing took effect Oct. 31; they require portable toilets to be on site when organizations distribute food outdoors. The permission of property owners is also required, and the ordinance says that “feeding sites cannot be within 500 feet of each other, that only one is allowed in any given city block and that any site would have to be at least 500 feet away from residential properties,” according to the Sun-Sentinel.

Homeless advocates have spoken out against the new rules, saying that they are “homeless hate laws.”