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Mayor: Just say no to panhandlers

POULSBO — Mayor Becky Erickson took more than a stand against heroin on Nov. 20.

She addressed another highly visible development along roadsides: Panhandling.

“We have resources in our community to help these people,” Erickson said, noting it is better to direct them to help within Poulsbo, such as Fishline.

“The people you see asking for money, they have a First Amendment right to do that,” Erickson said. “But everybody has a right to say ‘no.’”

“Everybody that is holding signs up in Poulsbo have been directed to Fishline and they are choosing not to use these services. Do not give them money.”

Deputy Police Chief Wright said Thursday that police have been called about panhandlers.

“We get calls on them on a fairly regular basis,” he said. “They panhandle all over — on Viking Way, on Olhava near Walmart and Starbucks, and 7th Avenue near Rite Aid.”

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