‘Denver plans to clear homeless camps near Samaritan House . . .’


By Max R. Weller

Read the report in the Denver Post. Quoting from it below:

Homeless camps that first sprang up on sidewalks near the downtown Samaritan House shelter last summer soon will get an eviction notice.

The city plans to provide advance warning early next week and on Tuesday will begin removing any remaining items left on public sidewalks or other public property, according to a notice obtained by The Denver Post and confirmed by city officials.

If the city doesn’t take action, officials say, the area will face “a looming public health and safety emergency.”

The city is taking a tougher stance toward the camps with a new multi-agency effort. It will mark the first clearing of downtown camps on this scale in recent memory, an official said, although police have conducted smaller periodic sweeps near the South Platte River and have used a controversial camping ban to move people off the streets.

In recent months, homeless campers have moved around the area near Lawrence Street and Park Avenue West after the city has cleared sidewalks for cleaning — as frequently as five days a week in January.

Despite ongoing attempts since September by city departments and homeless outreach groups to connect people to shelters and other services, the camping has persisted. Some people have resisted offers of shelter beds.

Denver city officials soon will increase enforcement of rules related to encampments near the Samaritan House and the Denver Rescue Mission in downtown

Denver city officials soon will increase enforcement of rules related to encampments near the Samaritan House and the Denver Rescue Mission in downtown Denver, March 4, 2016. (RJ Sangosti, The Denver Post)

I haven’t visited Denver in eight years, but as I recall it wasn’t like this in early 2008. I point to the current situation as undeniable PROOF that the do-gooders’ approach to either “end” or “address” homelessness in Denver is a total FAILURE, despite spending umpteen millions of $$$ from both public and private sources since the days of Mayor Hickenlooper.

Of course, it’s the bums who are giving the finger to society by camping out on sidewalks, making this area around the shelter/services providers — Samaritan House, Denver Rescue Mission, and the St. Francis Center — into a homeless ghetto. I can understand the resistance to being dehumanized in overcrowded, vermin-infested facilities; I refuse to stay overnight in them, too. BUT, the alternative is to camp out away from public view, maintaining a low profile; NOT dragging a ratty old sofa onto a sidewalk and blocking people’s movement, at the same time engaging in all sorts of misbehaviors from the merely annoying to violent felonies.

Respect yourself, respect others, and respect the community in which you live. Or, suffer the consequences.

We know, however, that authorities in Denver will continue to encourage transients there to move on to Boulder, but that’s a different post . . .


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