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Another City Repeals Its Panhandling Ordinance

(WHBC) – The much-discussed panhandling ordinance in the city of Massillon is going away.

City council voted 6 to 3 Monday night to eliminate the ordinance over fears the city could be sued over the right of freedom of speech.

The law has been on the books for 73 years.

In January, Canton City Council voted to repeal their city’s panhandling ordinance.

The American Civil Liberties Union sent Canton and many other cities a letter over the summer threatening a lawsuit if the cities didn’t repeal their ordinances prohibiting people from asking for money.

The ACLU says such ordinances are unconstitutional and a restriction on free speech.

Canton Law Director Kristen Bates Aylward says the city researched the issue and came to the same conclusion that the ACLU did, “that the courts are going to strike down ordinances similar to the one we had on the basis of the 1st Amendment.”

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