Press Releases are provided to Yellow Scene. In an effort to keep our community informed, we publish some press releases in whole.
After promising in writing to sweep camps as rarely as possible until housing is ready to move into, and with 7 days notice, Mayor Johnston is now planning to sweep the camp on 18th and Logan – with about 50-60 houseless residents – tomorrow with less than 24 hours notice. He is blaming the sweep on a shooting in the area that took place yesterday, but if an apartment complex is shot at all the residents are not evicted! The same should be true of an encampment. Furthermore, it appears from police reports that the shooting was not from a camp resident but was from outside the camp. The Mayor is using this to try and justify sweeping this large camp in violation of the Lyall agreement which requires 7 day notice.
In the (less than) 24 hour notice posted by DDPHE today at the camp, they also listed trash and drug use as reasons to sweep. This is a massive overreach by DDPHE to try and justify an unjustified sweep. This camp is not messy – in fact this is one of the camps which (in part) has just started receiving trash service from the City. Most of the camp is very clean. To reference “drug use” as a reason to sweep is an extremely concerning rights violation. Planning to an entire camp of residents from their tent homes because some residents use drugs is fraught with legal and humanity issues. With overdose death at an all time high, contributing to this by sweeping people (as this study shows) is simply not ok.
This planned sweep should be canceled immediately and other actions should be taken to support residents of this camp dealing with the trauma of a shooting and the need for stability and resources. Let this encampment be and instead bring them lighting, or trash receptacle, or bathrooms and water, or therapists, or other useful support…