Thursday, July 12, 2007

Tent cities rise, fall, rise....

Wednesday was the last night for the Warming Place shelter and its guests UNLESS shelter guest Ali Mohammed wins his injunction in Housing Court today. Mr. Mohammed's actions have actually put the city of Springfield and the Open Pantry on the same side as defendants-- at least for the the moment. He is trying to keep the city from closing the Warming Place by focusing on the problems homeless people will face at Springfield's two other shelters

Meanwhile, I can catch up on some other homeless/tent city news....Huntington, Ohio police cleared several small tent cities from the banks of the Ohio River this week. ""This is insanity," one homeless man said.. "It's one big family down here. We don't mess with nobody." Herald Dispatch.

Two city councils in Washington are considering an ordinance which would legally recognize and regulate tent cities.
"In an unusual move, Olympia and Tumwater are considering the same measure at the same time. Olympia Councilman Jeff Kingsbury will bring the ordinance to the Olympia City Council on Tuesday and ask for a vote July 17. The Tumwater City Council will have a public hearing about it July 17, Councilwoman Karen Valenzuela said, and she wants to pass the measure as an emergency ordinance the same night.
“If you don’t have an ordinance, essentially, whoever is hosting a tent encampment can do so without any rules whatsoever,” she said.
Kingsbury, who once was critical of homeless encampments, said he now thinks tent cities offer a good option for transitional housing and that the city should work with churches.". The Olympian.
Four teenagers in Huntsville, Alabama have been arrested for robbing and physically assaulting homeless people in a small homeless encampment. Huntsville Times.

In Edmonton, Alberta, a street pastor is calling for the city to open its parks and abandoned buildings to the homeless. About 2,600 people are homeless in Edmonton. Radio News 1130.

A sad story with-- maybe-- a happy ending: A University of Pittsburgh student who has been missing for some months was found at Glacier National Park in Montana, living in a small homeless encampment. Will he go home now? KX News.

Fresno tent city photo by Mike Rhodes, Fresno Alliance

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