NAME: Gary
Age: 34
Place: Streetcorner, 20th St. and Fifth Avenue Area, New York City
Time: 5PM Weekday

Tell me about yourself and how you came to be panhandling today.
Well, the simple fact of the matter is I am a veteran, I'm getting a non-service connected VA check. With this money, I'm paying my rent.
And since I'm non-service connected, I'm [getting less] than someone who is service connected. I'm getting something like six hundred a month. Someone that is service connected is somebody that has a problem occur with them while they were in the service.
Someone that's non-service connected, the problem may be caused BY the service. And since I'm non-service connected, after I pay my rent I don't have enough money to live off for the month.
How long have you been panhandling?
On and off since I've been getting my VA check, that's been about maybe ten, fifteen years.
How much money do you make on a good day of panhandling?
It used to be, ten, fifteen years ago I could make seventy dollars on a good day in New York. Nowadays if I have a good day, I make twenty.

Panhandlers: for the system or against it?

Featuring Gary


This Country

How You Present Yourself

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