Consumer Health

​Code Compliance Services

​Consumer Health Division  |  Homeless Feeding

The City of Dallas would like to thank those who take part in the charitable act of providing food for the homeless. Please review ordinanc e no. 29595 to ensure the safety of the providers, the food and the recipients of the food.

Chapter 17-1.6 "Food Establishments" of the Dallas City Code states:

  1. Serving or distributing food, without charge, to homeless individuals on public or private property, provided that the person:
    • Sent a notice within the time required below to Dallas 311 by:                                                                                  Dialing 3-1-1 (214-670-3111)                                                                                                                                                         Submitting Feed The Homeless Location at:                                                                            or send notice to:                                                                                                                                                                                      Department of Code Compliance 
      3112 Canton Street, Suite 100 
      (214) 670-5708 phone 
      (214) 670-3652 fax                                                                                                                                                                                or email information to: 
    • The notice should include the name of the individual or organization that was or will be serving or distributing food to the homeless.
    • The date or dates when food was or will be served or distributed to the homeless.
    • The times of day when food service and distribution is anticipated to or did begin and end on each date listed in the notice.
    • The street address or addresses of where food was or is anticipated to be served or distributed to the homeless or, if the location has no street address, then a description of the location by street block number or by naming the nearest intersecting streets.
    • The approximate or expected number of food preparers and servers on the site where the food was or will be served or distributed and the approximate or expected number of individuals that were or will be served, provided the number of individuals that were or is anticipated to be served exceeds 75 at a single location.
    • The notice shall be sent at least 24 hours before the service or distribution of food to the homeless will commence, if it is anticipated that more than 75 people will be served, or within 48 hours after the service or distribution of food to the homeless has concluded, if it anticipated that 75 or fewer people will be served at a single location.
    • A person commits an offense if he/she violates, or fails to comply with, a term or condition of homeless feeding issues pursuant to section 17-1.6.
    • Please read the recommendation from CDC on how to prevent the spread of Hepatitis A remember to have all volunteers handling food wash their hands with warm water, lather with soap for 20 seconds, rinse hands with warm water and dry hands with a clean towel before putting on gloves.  For information about cities that have experienced Hepatitis A  in homeless populations click here.

Provisions for Feeding the Homeless

  1. No potentially hazardous food may be served to the homeless, unless the food has been stored at a temperature of 41°F. (5°C) or below; or 135°F. (57°C) or above.
  2. Standards for Food Preparation and Transport
    • Food must be transported and served within four hours of preparation.
    • Food must be transported in a clean conveyance.
  3. Hand Washing (use one of the methods below for sanitizing hands)
    • Use a hand sanitizer containing at least 70 percent alcohol or another substance capable of killing 99.9 percent of the bacteria on hands within 30 seconds of application.
    • Use disposable gloves.
    • Use handwashing equipment that includes at a minimum a sink or a five-gallon container with a spigot that provides free-flowing water and a catch bucket to collect wastewater from handwashing, soap and individual paper towels.
  4. Wastewater
    • All wastewater generated from any handwashing equipment must be disposed of shall not be disposed on the ground or into the stormwater drainage system.
  5. Trash
    • Person(s) serving must bring a sufficient number of trash bags to dispose of the solid waste generated by the food provided by the servers and used best efforts to remove or cause the removal of all trash or debris from the feeding site that was generated by the service or distribution of food to the homeless, and deposited the trash or debris in a public trash receptacle or in a private trash receptacle if permission from the receptacle owner was obtained.