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HOLLAND, Mich. (WOOD) - A Holland mission that serves the homeless is launching a campaign to encourage people not to give money to panhandlers.
Since Michigan's ban on begging was ruled unconstitutional, the number of panhandlers on West Michigan streets has increased.
The Holland Rescue Mission's "Real Change, Not Spare Change" campaign says that people should donate to shelters and missions to help the homeless and provides information about available agencies.
The mission says that money given to panhandlers often goes to supporting an "unhealthy lifestyle or addiction."
"Giving a person money, most often, studies have shown that more than 90% of that money ends up for illicit lifestyle choices," Holland Rescue Mission Executive Director Darryl Bartlett told 24 Hour News 8. "It's not wise to give money. That will perpetuate the problem."
Bartlett says that shelters and missions that can do much more to help a person in need than a few bucks given to someone on the street.
==Watch above: Darryl Bartlett talks about the "Real Change, Not Spare Change" campaign.==
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