Baltimore program to steer ‘squeegee kids’ to other work

BALTIMORE (AP) — Youngsters known as “squeegee kids” who wash car windows while darting in and out of traffic could go from street hustling to conventional employment under a privately-funded program proposed by Baltimore’s mayor.

Mayor Catherine Pugh says roughly $2 million per year over the next two years can be raised to enroll 100 youngsters in a training program while providing stipends. In a Baltimore Sun op-ed Tuesday, Pugh writes she’s “confident we can put forth a sustainable program.”

Controversy is perennial over Baltimore’s “squeegee kids.” Some say cracking down on the youth would serve to discourage an entrepreneurial spirit. Others say their activity more accurately resembles extortion.

A motorist recently posted photos and video on social media after his car’s back window was shattered when he refused a cleaning.

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