Austin Police Department's Executive Team is considering asking the city to change an ordinance that currently allows people to loiter along shoulders and medians.
"We all have to survive. I've been on and off here for three years. I fly out there at night in the meantime and I got a lot of regulars," said Daniel, a member of Austin's homeless community about panhandlers.
APD said what they're doing is dangerous. Thirty pedestrians were killed on Austin roads in 2015, double the number of pedestrian deaths in 2014. Police also said 37 percent of the deceased were homeless. 27 percent had mental illness. Eighteen of the deaths in 2015 involved people who were impaired.
Austin Police Cmdr. Art Fortune said that if you add the vulnerable population to high speed roadways and impairment, it is a recipe for disaster.
"The only way an officer can do something is actually when somebody steps in the roadway by that time it's almost too late," said Fortune.
APD wants the city to modify the ordinance to include shoulders and medians as illegal places for anyone to loiter or linger.
"To me its waiting for something to happen. If we can change the ordinance, they might be able to say 'Hey, you can't be here, move along,'" said Fortune.
Daniel said he knows its dangerous, and even reinforced what police said.
"If you get hit, it's our fault the majority of the time," said Daniel.
Still, Daniel said he has no plans of changing his behavior or where he asks for money.
If APD's Executive Team approves the recommendation, it will then go before city council.
Go here to read the current ordinance.