Seattle City Council discusses Safe Zones for the homeless

Anitra Freeman (anitra@speakeasy.org)
Tue, 22 Jun 1999 23:06:33 -0700 (PDT)


At 9:30AM on Wednesday 6/23, Peter Steinbrueck's City Council committee
will discuss setting up Safe Zones for the homeless who sleep outdoors.
Within the Safe Zone, homeless people will be allowed to sleep, camp, sit,
without being ticketed or arrested.

Safe Zones were tried in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, and eventually failed
for several reasons. As soon as the Safe Zones were established, the
police began herding all homeless people found outside into the Safe
Zones, and they became overloaded.  No system of self-governance or
social-services support was in place.

I am glad that the City Council is considering *some* way to provide for
the homeless who are still outdoors, but I don't believe that this is a
good way.  I support enacting a policy like the Emergency Encampment
Civility Code http://insideshare.hypermart.net/proposal.html#e2c2 allowing
emergency encampments wherever they maintain safety and hygiene
conditions, with the campers, neighbors, social services and city offices
cooperating to keep the camp healthy and keep people moving forward.

You can ask Peter Steinbrueck your own questions or give him your own
comments.  His webpage is
http://www.pan.ci.seattle.wa.us/seattle/leg/steinbru/default.htm

Write On!
Anitra