Serving & Ensuring


​Guide to Big City Challenges

Let’s face it, along with the prestige, energy and opportunities generated by a big city come challenges. Jackson is a big city and Downtown is its vibrant central neighborhood. Our daytime safety ambassadors and nighttime security actively deter panhandling, track reported incidents, and immediately respond to your calls. Even so, the responsibilities of being aware of your surroundings, practicing common sense, and obeying the law are essential to our neighborhood’s well being.

Panhandling is Against the Law

Asking for money and misrepresentation are criminal offenses in the Jackson Central Business District and should be reported. When faced with panhandling, the best thing you can do is to learn how to respond to it properly.  Keep in mind that there are individuals who have established panhandling as a lucrative profession and some use your money to support addiction to alcohol or drugs. Let’s put your resources to their highest purpose by lending a hand, not a handout.

Lend a Hand, Not a Handout

  • Support local charities and social service providers who interact and help the needy on a daily basis.
  • Many service providers are within walking distance of downtown and they need your financial support to help needy individuals get back on their feet.
  • Volunteer your time to organizations and service agencies addressing this issue.
  • Contact the City of Jackson’s Homeless Coordinator at (601) 960-2178.

Responding to Panhandlers

  • Walk with certainty and confidence. Make eye contact and acknowledge the person with a nod.
  • Respond politely by saying “no” or “sorry”.
  • If you want to offer something, consider bottled water or a food gift certificate instead of cash.
  • If you would like to report an illegal panhandler, call 601-624-6684 for a Downtown Ambassador or Safety Patrol. Of course, if you feel threatened or if the panhandler shows aggressive behavior, immediately call 911 for police assistance.

To Report Panhandling Issues Anytime:

  • For an emergency, dial 911
  • For assistance call 601-624-6684
  • For more information or to share your comments email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

RESOURCES FOR DEALING WITH PANHANDLING