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Miami’s downtown panhandling ban is unconstitutional, court says

Panhandling (2)


A controversial law banning panhandling in downtown Miami has been struck down by the courts.

In a ruling that could stoke tensions between condo tenants and downtown’s homeless, a judicial panel of the 11th Circuit’s appellate division ruled this month that Miami’s blanket ban on street begging is unconstitutional.

Relying on the Supreme Court’s recent Reed v Town of Gilbert decision rebuking “content-based” messaging bans, the panel found that Miami’s law, passed under the pretense of protecting tourism and downtown businesses around the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts and the AmericanAirlines Arena, crossed the line by dictating what people can say in public.

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Photo: Al Seib/Los Angeles Times/TNS