May 12, 2008

Welcome INN To Sue Parks Department

by Rohan Parker

During the late afternoon of the 7th of February this year, a religious group titled Welcome INN – Interfaith Need Network – were trying to hand out food to the homeless in a state park, just as they had done at the same location the two previous nights.

This night, however, they were not allowed to hand out their food, and were stopped by park guards sanding over them who told them that they were in violation of park law by having a public meeting which was not pre-arranged.

Welcome INN had recently moved their outreach program to Doheny State Beach in Dana Point, which has helped many over the past year.

Welcome INN has hit back by launching a law suit against the parks department, stating that their 1st Amendment rights had been violated and that they had the right to meet in public.

Roy Stearns of the Parks Department stated he was sympathetic to what the homeless of that area would have to deal with, however they lacked the permit for the gathering.

Unfortunately for the Welcome INN, they haven’t been hugely supported, as the church they were working out of had refused to continue the program from the premises because of the scruffy appearance of the homeless people.

Some members of the charity group were told they would be arrested if they did not disperse the meeting.

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Story link: Welcome INN To Sue Parks Department

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