Detroit homeless man takes credit cards, hopes to help others with website

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(Jan. 29, 2016) — Forget the old “I don’t have change” excuse you give panhandlers. Abe Hagenston has an app for that.

Well, more like a card reader. He takes credit cards through Square as he works the corner of Woodward Avenue and 8 Mile Road in Detroit.

Oh, and he has a website too.

“Being homeless is my business now,” Hagenston told CNN affiliate WDIV. “My business is being homeless.”

On the web

Through his website, people can make contributions to a collection of homeless people, hire them for odd jobs or even report fake panhandlers who drive from the suburbs.

“I’m trying to turn this situation into something that will not only help me but help others,” he said.

Hagenston’s been on the streets for 10 years and goes by the name “Honest Abe.”

“I’ve rebuilt my life a few times but this time I’m not getting it,” he said. “People don’t realize how tough it is to come from nothing when you don’t have any family or any friends.”

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