Rockford group helping those in need fights to reopen after being shut down by city

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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) ─ A Rockford group helping those in need is fighting to reopen after the city shut them down.

Rockford Cares started up in December after David Riggs and his family moved to the Forest City.

They started small, by making boxed meals and handing them out to people coming to their door. The group quickly grew. Later Rockford Cares started handing out clothes, toys, and anything else anyone needed.

Group leaders said, at one point, they were helping more than 300 people a day, 7days a week.

That is when the City of Rockford stepped in and shut them down, citing code violations.

“We had it out front. Somebody from the city said we couldn’t do that, so we moved it to the back, because they said that it was a distraction,” said Rockford Cares owner David Riggs. “We moved it to the back. The city still told us we couldn’t do it. They said we could be on church property or in a commercial warehouse.”

The City of Rockford said it is willing to work with the group.

In a statement the city said quote, “City staff is always willing to work with community members on ways to accomplish their mission while remaining in compliance with our zoning codes. We will connect individuals to community resources and organizations to help fulfill their mission.”

“City staff is always willing to work with community members on ways to accomplish their mission while remaining in compliance with our zoning codes. We will connect individuals to community resources and organizations to help fulfill their mission.”

City of Rockford Statement

If you would like to help Rockford Cares, you can find more information here.

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