SVP Stands Up For Vendors’ Bladders

The new DOH street vendor rules took effect on January 1st, and even though they admitted the no seafood rule was a mistake and won’t be enforced, there is another new law that is causing some discomfort (literally.) Last week a Downtown street vendor had his permit confiscated when he left his cart unattended to go to the bathroom- which is now outlawed under the new rules. (The vendor knew he was violating the rule, but he has a tumor in his colon, and couldn’t hold it in any longer.) So this morning the Street Vendor Project held a protest in front of the DOH in an effort to get the new law repealed. No word on if the protest worked, but we wish them luck. Insert urine joke here… or instead, feel bad that a grown man with a tumor will now be out of work for at least a few weeks because he went to the bathroom. (Or you can do both.)

Photo courtesy of the Village Voice


  • I think I can speak for everyone when I say, that’s totally fucked up! Poor guy.

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    hell i hate leaving things unattended for too long, just imagining that i come back and its either tampered with or just plain gone

    what is the definition of “unattended” though? is it someone is not there to prepare the food or someone is just plain not there? like if this guy or another vendor had someone just stand by the cart while he was gone. not cooking or anything but just watching it for him. would he have still gotten in trouble?

  • That’s really sad to hear. Give those guys a break. They stand there there all day already. What can he do? Take the cart with him to the can!

  • @Spydr – No… I think if he had another vendor sit there for him, it would be ok. According to one of the articles linked above, his “delivery guy” was in Midtown, and he couldn’t wait for him to get back.

  • “Mountain Dew, Or Crab Juice?”

  • i think they pee right out the side of the cart.

  • what’s next? no seafood at carts.

    there is a gonna be a spike in euromysatisis poisoning.

  • wait, not for nothing, but a man with a colon tumor should seriously consider a helping hand in that cart…

  • then, i feel awful for this guy and anyone that eats at a street cart.

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    If he has bladder problems, he should not be in this line of work. He could use adult diapers, or an empty 2 liter bottle.

  • ha. love it…viktor, you’re right. I think the poor thing may need to retire…LET’S RALLY FOR HiM!!!!!!!!!!
    I bet most of these guys will be wearing adult diapers though…Now, sit back and imagine having your food served and handled by someone who has been sitting in an unchanged pissy (or maybe more) diapaer for 5-8 hours….

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    When I first heard this story, I thought it was completely unfair. But the more I learned about it, the DOH has a point. They’re willing to give a 15-minute grace period. And I think they’re OK with it if somebody watches the cart. But apparently this dude was away from his cart for about half an hour. Lots of things can happen within that time. Hey, shit can happen if you’re away for a couple of minutes. I feel bad for the guy because of his condition. But I think what he should have done in this situation is to pay somebody to watch his cart.

  • 15 minutes within what time span?

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    I’m assuming they mean 15 minutes from the time they spot the cart unmanned. But as I said before, it only takes a couple of seconds for a person to hock a loogie into those peanuts. That or poison the peanuts. Anybody remember the Tylenol cyanide scare back in the 80s? There are quite a few nut jobs in NY.

  • ya know what…I really dont even want to think about street vendors (or anyone that handles my food)and their bathroom habits.Now it’s kinda hard not to. Anyone with me?

  • rent a port-a-potty?

  • I think that ‘soupdumpling’ is one of the few commenters here who has both oars in the water.

    He (or she) has, with very few words, made a case that all MTL folks should appreciate.

    These recent immigrant, food-cart operators are not concerned with YOUR health. They are concerned with THEIR survival on the streets. Most of them don’t give a fu** about YOUR health.

    Until you understand that fact, and until you stop encouraging their activities by patronizing them, you are endangering YOUR health as well as everyone else’s health who think that these ‘carts’ are a safe food source.

    But, obviously, no one is interested in MY observations (except maybe the astute readers of The New York Post).

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