Panhandlers take their pleas online

December 23, 2008 7:25:20 AM PST
Some of the Raleigh area's needy are putting their pleas for help online, preferring electronic anonymity to panhandling. Dozens of people have posted requests for help on the local edition of Craigslist, the Website that offers free classified ads. Requests include children's clothing, toys, holiday decorations and even rent money.

Other Craigslist users mark the posts with warnings to watch for scammers or even remove them.

Triangle United Way spokesman R.J. Moshay says the site is a chance for immediate outreach. The agency found a man who said online he was about to be evicted because he couldn't pay the rent. A United Way staffer sent an e-mail asking him to get in touch.