Weather Alert

Councilman Pelaez: Giving money to panhandlers is ’empowering the opioid epidemic’

SAN ANTONIO (KTSA News) – San Antonio City Councilman Manny Pelaez recently accompanied city crews and police as they cleaned up drainage culverts off of IH 10 at De Zavala Road where they found shopping carts, loose change, drugs and syringes.

“A few of the hypodermic needles we found were half full of blood, half full of heroine,” he said in a Facebook video of the cleanup.

His explanation of the vast amount of loose change that was found scattered all over the place was that “drug dealers don’t take loose change.”

The District 8 councilman goes on to say that giving money to panhandlers is contributing to the opioid epidemic.

“We’re empowering an opioid addiction that, quite honestly, together we could stop,” he said.

He says it’s difficult to drive away panhandlers when people keep giving them money at busy intersections, noting that IH 10 at De Zavala Road is very profitable.

“We have 80,000 vehicles that cross through here every single day,” he said, adding that many of those drivers roll down their windows and hand over some money. “Please stop rolling down your window.”

Pelaez asks that drivers who want to help the homeless would be better off donating to organizations that help get people off the streets.


Connect With Us Listen To Us On