HOUSTON (KIAH) — Food Not Bombs is an international organization that serves the homeless community by feeding them free vegan meals. Here in Houston, the group feeds four days out of the week.

Food Not Bombs has been feeding here in Houston for 15 years outside of the Houston Public Library. Back in 2012, a food ordinance here in Houston was passed that restricted how many people could be fed at one time on a property.

However, volunteer John Locke says, the group was given permission by former Houston Mayor Annise Parker to feed here outside of the library.

“Under Annise Parker’s tenure in office that restricted people from being able to feed more than five people at a time without getting a permit or all these like permission slips from the city or and since then, they have never ticketed anyone. And Parker gave Food Not Bombs specifically permission to feed the homeless by the library,” Locke says.

However, the city of Houston has started fining volunteers thousands of dollars for feeding outside of the library due to claims of harassment issues.

“They are not being ticketed for feeding the homeless. They are being ticketed for where (they are feeding them). The city has provided a more than reasonable location where they can feed if they choose and that’s right down the street. In fact, what is not being said enough is that the city is providing another location at the city’s cost, providing hot meals four times a day,” Turner said.

Locke says that moving the location will only cause more problems. He says the distance is further away and could cause complications for the elderly. He also adds, that using a police station as a feeding site, will make the homeless feel uncomfortable. Food Not Bombs has no intention of moving despite the fines.

“That is not the plan, been here for many years now, and you know, want to see a David versus Goliath battle then we’ll give you one but we’re here to serve the community,” Locke said.