-: Nov 26, 2018 / Nick K

Panhandling at Shopping Centers: What Can Be Done to Address It?

Just because the subject of panhandling can get a little hectic doesn’t mean it has to be complicated or enigmatic. The answers that work well for businesses within a shopping center and community surrounding them are simpler than some people think. On one hand, a major part of the solution comes down to the way people choose to interact with one another in a respectful way. On the other hand, businesses have the right to implement any design that falls within the law they see fit to reach their commercial goals. As a general rule, these circumstances don’t have to impede or interfere with one another. When faced with the dilemma of addressing panhandling at a shopping center, here are a few steps to consider.

Maintain Eye Contact

During a face-to-face interaction with a panhandler, it’s considered bad form to not make eye contact if even for a moment. Of course, this eye contact should be maintained while conversing politely. However, this shouldn’t be an issue for dealing with panhandlers at a shopping center because most people are polite when they pay a visit to their local plazas. As a matter of protocol, anything gifted to a panhandler is done so with the understanding that no future conditions apply. However, one rule stands before any other when it comes to dealing with the matter of panhandling: safety first.

Try to Avoid Confrontation

When a panhandler becomes aggressive or overbearing, the best thing people can do is leave the scene in peace, which doesn’t necessarily include turning a blind eye to the panhandler. Simply mastering the maneuvers of navigating through a noticeably high number of panhandlers within an area only addresses half of the problem. If a shopping center is to be an asset to a local community, it has to be a place of legitimate commerce.

Hire Professional Security

In some cases of shopping centers that have panhandler issues, the ideal solution involves active participation by the proprietor on more levels than one. For these business owners, calling local law enforcement isn’t always enough to handle the situation. Employing private security is a better way to go. The issue then becomes hiring the right Chatsworth security guards because making the wrong choice could result in a waste of resources and time. One of the most important criteria for hiring the right security agency is its design and structure. There have to be hierarchies in place to make sure the frontline interaction between the establishment and panhandlers stays sharp. Without the constant presence of a security team in place, panhandlers often cycle in their frequenting of shopping centers.

One of the best ways to deter panhandling and other undesirable situations is to opt for guard patrol security. Chatsworth businesses can rely on Security Consulting Group to provide highly trained, experienced security guards. If you’d like a free quote, give us a call today at 818-462-3080.


Posted in: Commercial Security