Is that the term to use? Pan handlers? Beggars? Economic disadvantaged?
I want to know how you all handle this group of people. Do you not make eye contact? Smile and shake your head? Dig out any spare change? What?
In my town, which is small, but close to being a subburb of a large citythere are only three major roads. At every intersection there is someone with a sign asking for money. To get out of my town I have to stop at 5 lights. At two lights the people just hold up the signs, the other ones come to your window.
I would much rather walk the mile to the grocery store on nice days, but my DD and I have been followed by people asking for a few bucks.
Some wait on the sidewalk in front of the bank (if they are not in the lot, legally they cannot be asked to move) and will ask for money if you use the ATM or go inside or come out.
There are a seven different grocery stores in a five mile radius. People wander the parking lot asking for change .
I have been cursed at. I have been called racist, I have had them refuse the coins and throw them at me because it "isn't enough to buy shit". I have offered some of my food (an orange from a bag of oranges or the like) only to have it either refused on the spot or tossed aside. I don't smoke, and I won't buy smokes for strangers ($7 a pack???). Heck I won't even buy them for my DH. I am on a tight budget (medical bills) and if I buy for everyone else we will go without.
Now I have donated out grown clothing to the shelters and I give to the food drives, but this is getting out of hand.
So I have to ask......is there a code, a behavior/action that I am missing that makes people think I am going to give them money if they keep bugging me? I've noticed that they don't bug everyone, but I cannot see why they ask who they do.
So, for those of you who live in a place where there are beggars... what do you say/don't say/act to avoid being asked?