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New Recycling Laws will Impact the Homeless

by Mike Rhodes (mikerhodes [at] comcast.net)
"The law, in its majestic equality, forbids rich and poor alike to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal their bread."
- Anatole France
New Recycling Laws will Impact the Homeless
By Mike Rhodes

Starting December 1, 2008, fewer homeless will be able to recycle cans and bottles as a source of income. That is because new laws will require them to have a valid driver’s license or state ID card before they can get paid for recyclables. The laws, signed by Governor Schwarzenegger, are an attempt to reduce the theft of aluminum, copper, and stainless steel but will significantly impact homeless people without state issued ID.

Many homeless people do not have state issued ID for a variety of reasons. In Fresno, a major reason homeless people do not have state issued ID is because city clean up crews took it during raids conducted over the last ten years. It had been city policy to immediately take and destroy homeless peoples property - giving them no opportunity to reclaim their possessions, which included ID, clothing, tent, and any thing else they owned. A federal court order has blocked the city from the continuation of that policy. But, many of the homeless still don’t have state issued ID.

The five new bills passed into law are SB 447, SB 691, AB 844, AB 1859, and AB1778. According to fliers now being distributed to the homeless by recycling operations, they will be required to collect the following information from their customers:

1. Name, valid driver’s license number or state identification card number and state of issue.
2. Vehicle license number and state of issue.
3. A description of the items being recycled.
4. A statement indicating the seller is the owner, or a signed transfer document.
5. A photograph or video of the customer (Non-Ferrous only).
6. A thumb print of the customer (Non-Ferrous only).

Payment for all Non-Ferrous metals (copper, copper alloys, stainless steel, or aluminum) will be held for three days from the date of sale.

"The law, in its majestic equality, forbids rich and poor alike to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal their bread."
- Anatole France

###

For a list of articles and documents about the struggle for civil liberties for homeless people in Fresno, see: http://www.fresnoalliance.com/home/homelessness.htm
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We need a New Governor!
Sun, Nov 30, 2008 10:25PM
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