Advocates Push For An End To Eugene's Camping Ban

Oct 26, 2015

Homeless people and their advocates gathered Monday evening at the Eugene Free Speech Plaza. They're asking the City Council to lift its camping ban.

Advocates hold signs along 8th avenue Monday evening before the Eugene City Council meeting.
Credit Rachael McDonald

Terra Williams is a volunteer with Occupy Medical. She says as Eugene Police continue to enforce the city's camping ban, advocates will keep asking the council to find better solutions for the growing homeless population.

Williams: "We do have a lot of empty buildings that could be utilized to house the homeless. We feel that the city spends a lot of money towards these policies that cause the EPD to follow the homeless around and cite them and confiscate their belongings."
 
Williams says the city could redirect money toward sanitation facilities for homeless campers. Eugene's leaders have expressed unwillingness to lift the camping ban because of concern for public safety. Meanwhile Portland's mayor last month declared a state of emergency because of homelessness-- and the city council is taking action to address it.