Eugene free-food diner attracts homeless, critics

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EUGENE, Ore. (AP) -- Some business owners in downtown Eugene say they're losing customers because of the behavior of homeless people outside a downtown Eugene diner that offers free meals.

Some are calling for the eatery to move. But the operators of The Dining Room say it's staying put.

The Eugene Register-Guard (http://bit.ly/n00QJn ) reports that a recent discussion between business and social service interests found no middle ground in a dispute over The Dining Room.

Among the complaints are drunkenness, drug use, foul language and public urination and sex.

The diner is an 8-year-old meal site run by FOOD for Lane County. The Register-Guard says patrons convene four days a week for a four-course meal. It caters to people who are homeless or in danger of becoming homeless.

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Information from: The Register-Guard, http://www.registerguard.com