Chester Woman is Fined $600/day for Feeding Children From Her House

PBJSince many children in lower-income families acquire their sustenance from school meals during the year, the summer can be a difficult time for these children to get the food that they need. In some families, breakfast and lunch at school are the only meals that kids get to eat in a day, prompting some organizations such as Feeding America to start BackPack Programs to send children home with food to eat for dinner.

This summer, Angela Prattis has been attempting to alleviate this problem by distributing free meals (provided by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia) out of her driveway.

However, she is facing fines of $600 a day from Chester Township officials for every day that she has fed the kids. Township officials state that the violation resulted from conducting commercial activities in a residential zone. To continue, she has been asked to request a zoning variance which costs about $1,000.

What do you think? Is Angela Prattis guilty of a zoning violation? If so, do you agree that she should be fined?


  1. I don't believe that giving away things for free counts as commercial, and therefore this is ridiculous. They need to look again at the definition of commercial and see if free food to people unable to buy it for themselves counts. Does Chester Township fine every child-run lemonade stand? Probably not, and rightly so. They also shouldn't fine this woman. I would love someone to dig deeper into this story and find out how she was even reported to the officials. Shameful. Absolutely shameful.

  2. Natalee, that's so true. What you're saying hits at the heart of the issue--why choose to target this woman? Although I am not claiming to be well versed in zoning regulations, I also question if this qualifies as a zoning violation. It doesn't sit well with me.


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