Crazy Faith Ministries has been defying the City of Olympia, Wash. every Thursday and Saturday by feeding homeless people.
The city claims the feedings are dangerous because the large crowds don't obey traffic laws and local businesses say the poor people scare their customers away.
“This is the best corner in town, at least it used to be,” Randy Morlan, who owns Euphorium Salon & Spa, told King 5 (video below).
“We’ve seen drug deals, I’ve seen defecation in my entrances, which is not good for business,” claims Morlan. “They’re taking more than they should from our community and the downtown area."
However, Jamie Mathias, who owns a local Papa Johns restaurant, has donated pizza and free socks to homeless people during the meals.
For about 700 homeless people, the meals are vital says Crazy Faith Ministries volunteer Michelle Jorgensen
“That kills me, we often have to send people away because we run out of food,” said Jorgensen.
Ben Charles, founder of Crazy Faith Ministries, has gotten notices from the police that the church group cannot use the parking lot, but the police are unable to cite any broken laws.
According to Storyleak.com, the City of Olympia is now trying to pass a new law that would require groups to purchase permits for any activity in city parking lots. Violations would include fines and jail.
The Olympia City Council voted on Tuesday 6-1 to send the ordinance to a second reading.
During the meeting, Charles spoke out against the city's plans (video below).
“We and our street family are the public and we are peacefully gathering together for our common good," stated Charles. "That is the birthright not only of Native people, but the constitutional right of all Washingtonians."
“The City Council should be deeply ashamed that it would even consider attempting to block off this property so that it can only be used by people with cars or people who first get the government’s permission,” added Charles.