Sunday, August 23, 2009

Police order homeless campers on Mark Merin's property to vacate

The police have ordered campers on property belonging to attorney Mark Merin to leave, due to complaints from homeowners in the neighborhood.

Almost as quickly as it was arranged for homeless people to make use of the property on C Street, near 13th St., the police have ordered the campers to leave.

This news comes from an article in the Sacramento Bee, dated August 22, titled, "Sacramento police order campers to leave homeless 'safe ground.'"

The article tells us, "Area leaders are discussing establishing a larger-scale "safe ground" that would offer services such as garbage pickup and social support."

An obvious alternate site for homeless campers to pitch their tents, where neighbors are very very unlikely to object, is ground on the Loaves & Fishes facility where a building was recently razed.

It is noted that Merin and the so-called "safe ground movement" leaders continue to foster confusion in their use of their term "safe ground." "Safe ground" had meant sanctioned, legal campgrounds for homeless people. Now, it can mean that, and its opposite, a campground that is not sanctioned by the city or county where homeless people camp.

The "safe ground movement" seems determined to stall out, not as a matter of social policy, but on a matter of confused semantics.

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Blogger Dick Fischbeck said...

Hi Tom

A legal emergency shelter may very well be legal without any additional approval by the city. It is in the fine print of the building code (but I am just guessing and not an expert).

We will know in a few weeks I suspect.

Camping and conforming to code do not have to be mutually exclusive, I don't think.

After all, everyone is camping when you get right down to it!

"How much does your shelter weigh?", someone once asked.

Freedom, Maine

August 23, 2009 at 2:34 PM  
Blogger Tom Armstrong said...

"Camping" is the one kind of 'shelter' that is heavily discriminated against in the city and county -- due to waste, trash and water issues, and because people in tents are 'living' mostly outside their tents. Tents were what were being used on Mark Merin's property.

An "emergency shelter" implies a building of some sort, and that, too, is heavily regulated in Sacramento, city & county.

A community of U-Domes on Loaves & Fishes' property would almost-certainly still require city approval, but would be likely to get it! But Sister Libby is resistant toward using any of the millions of dollars L&F has piled up.

August 23, 2009 at 4:12 PM  

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