In back of Newark Penn Station is Peter Francisco Park and it has long been a homeless gathering point. It’s also long been a place that kindhearted strangers have brought food for those homeless people. Now, according to, the city is saying enough.

East Ward Councilman Augusto Amador has suggested for years good people trying to feed the homeless should not be allowed to. Now a plan has come together for three local churches to become drop off points for food for the homeless.

“What’s being done now to move the homeless population from public places. We are entering into agreements with the churches to do the feeding exclusively," Amador said. “It’s better to do it that way, not only for the public itself but also for the dignity of homeless.”

If these good Samaritans are seen trying to hand out food in the park the police will stop them and direct them to the Saint James AME Church, the Saint Matthew’s Methodist Church or the Saint John’s Roman Catholic Church.

In other words, get the homeless people out of sight. There are a couple thousand homeless who frequent that area and I’d be curious to know what they think of Amador’s concern for their dignity. I’ve given directly to homeless people on public streets and in public parks and not once did they seem to be concerned about dignity. They seemed only concerned with making it through one more day while waiting on a miracle.

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