In 2018, the ACLU of Colorado participated in a "Day of Letters" organized by the National Law Center on Homeless & Poverty (NLCHP) (later remaned National Homelessness Law Center).  Advocates in a dozen states sent letters demanding that more than 200 cities repeal panhandling bans and redirect resources to housing and other support for people experiencing homelessness.

The Colorado ACLU sent individualized letters to 31 municipalities with varied bans on panhandling, all of which were facially unconstitutional in light of recent court decisions.  

In Colorado, individualized letters were sent challenging ordinances in AguilarAlmaBerthoudBlue RiverBrushCentral City,  Columbine ValleyCommerce CityDe BequeDel NorteEstes ParkFairplayFrederickGarden CityGranbyIdaho SpringsJulesburgLa JaraMancosNew CastleOurayPalisadePaoniaPierceRangleyTimnathVictorWellingtonWindsorWray and Yuma.

An ACLU of Colorado letter campaign in 2016 prompted 34 Colorado cities to halt enforcement and repeal ordinances that made it a crime to "loiter for the purpose of begging."  The 2018 letters addressed several flavors of unconstitutional of anti-panhandling laws, including ordinances that duplicated provisions found unconstitutional in earlier ACLU of Colorado litigation challenging ordinances in Grand Junction and Fort Collins.  

The cities receiving the ACLU letters agreed to stop enforcement.  Most repealed the challenged ordinances, while some ameneded the challenged ordinance and retained only provisions to which the ACLU did not object.  

ACLU and NLCHP news releases:




Mark Silverstein, ACLU of Colorado Legal Director; Rebecca Wallace, ACLU of Colorado Staff Attorney & Policy Counsel

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