Sunday, October 25, 2009


Oct 5, 2009

As you know we were swept on Wednesday the 30th from the port of Seattle’s T-107 Park. It was shocking and shattering. Most of ushave been separated from everything we own, except what will fill abackpack or two.
Since then many of us have been at St. Andrews Episcopal Church on80th Ave NW. Many more, though, are floating between other places –temporarily couch surfing, sleeping in vehicles, staying in thejungle. A sizable number fled to Motels on Aurora.
There are some ideas to try and have a project there. That’s not Nickelsville’s goal, but we wish them luck.
Many of the Nickelodeons who were swept last Wednesday will not beable to get back together until we have another outdoor site. This, and our inability to get our things back until we have an outdoorsite, are two reasons why it is so important someone – most likely a church – stand up and let us stay for up to 3 months while we secure the permanent site.
On this Wednesday, the 7th, our core group of Nickelodeons will bemoving to Keystone Congregational Church at 5019 Keystone Place North (& 50th in Wallingford.)
It is a small building with a big hearted congregation. They are willing to share with us all they have, whichis very moving to us. We will be staying in their Sanctuary, and it is not yet clear how we will cook. It is not likely that more than 30 people can fit into the space. Because two Congregations use the space on Sundays we will have to be out from 8 AM to 7:30 PM on that day.
We would love to see you and visit, but must ask that you be careful in the donations that are dropped by – there isn’t much storage room. At the same time, we have a big quandary. All of our belongings have either been seized by the Port, or are in one storage group with friends. In both cases, we cannot recover and take responsibility for them until there is an outdoor site with storage. That means some of the clothes on our back have been the same clothes on the same back for a couple of days. We need to get some new clothes, and replace some of the other possessions we can’t yet retrieve.
If you have the following specific item their donation would be veryhelpful.
If it’s not on this list, please call either the camp number– 450-5268 – or the Staff number - 450-9136.
Then we can tell you whether to bring it now, or to wait until later. Here is what we are in need of right now:
Winter coats, blankets,sleeping bags. Men's pants, sizes 34 to 36 shirts, women's size 7 –18, large to ex large sweatshirts, and also hygiene such astoothpaste, toothbrushes, soap, shampoo, towels, and deodorant.Ready to eat food for about 30, tents and most of all money to pay forpast and future porta potties and dumpsters are also needed.
If you’ve seen a Nickelsvile Alert before, you know that there are over 40 pieces of property in Seattle that are sitting vacant right now that would be great for our permanent site. It’s just that we have not yet found an owner of such property – despite repeated requests – who is willing to share. In the same way there are many churches and charitable organizationswith a patch of land large enough to accommodate up to 100 Nickelodeons for the next 3 months while we secure a permanent site.
We must confess a little disappointment that almost one week after thePort shattered our community, no one with temporarily available land has yet contacted us.
Please remind those you know with an unused parking lot or patch of lawn that they are needed and have a chance to do a great thing!

97 year old homeless woman from LA is no longer sleeping on the streets.

by Shannon Moriarty
Published October 20, 2009 @ 09:40AM PT

The 97 year old homeless woman from LA is no longer sleeping on the streets. Her story, published Friday in the LA Times, garnered national disbelief and prompted service providers to act quickly to move her into housing.
Bessie Mae Berger was 97 years old and living in a beat up 1973 Chevy Suburban with her two sons. The LA Times exposed their plight on Friday, detailing how the trio sleeps, moves from parking lot to parking lot, and occasionally panhandles for food. Their plight caught national attention, prompting LA and California authorities to take immediate action.
Today, the three are safely housed - together, as they wished - in the California Retirement Villa. It's a temporary situation, currently slated to last three months. But the organization says they are committed to helping this family obtain long-term benefits.

Let's breathe a collective sigh of relief now that one especially fragile woman and her two elderly sons are off the streets. What whatever you do, don't get complacent. There are thousands of other elderly homeless individuals hidden in cars, alleys, tent cities, and shelters across the U.S.

Where is the outrage that will move them into housing?

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Cirle A Radio and KBOO FM Radio cover protest in Portland

Homelessness in Portland
Submitted by Erin Yanke on Wed, 09/02/2009 - 8:12pm

program date: Wed, 09/02/2009
program: Circle A Radio
As the number of people living on the streets continues to increase during this recession, many cities are passing ordinances restricting survival activities such as sleeping, sitting down, and asking for spare change. The National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty released a report in July called Homes Not Handcuffs.
The 190 page report says that city ordinances frequently serve as a tool for criminalizing homelessness.
The report also examines violations of the US Constitution and human rights law within these measures. Here in Portland, the Sit-Lie Ordinance has been declared unconstitutional twice. Still, it looks like Mayor Sam Adams is intent on finding a replacement for the defunct ordinance.
Tonight on Circle A Radio you'll hear mostly from people who are currently homeless in Portland.
We recorded this with the help of Heather Mosher and Wendy Kohn of Kwamba Productions, and Ibrahim Mubarek, one of the founders of Dignity Village. We visited several sites in Portland where homeless folks gather so we could talk to them first hand about their experiences.

Title: Homelessness in Portland
Date: 09/02
Year: 2009
Producer: Circle A Radio
Length: 55:12 minutes (22.11 MB)
Format: MP3 Mono 22kHz 56Kbps (CBR)
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Sunday, October 18, 2009

Videos From Portland Homeless Protesters

I went by Portland City Hall on Sat 10.10 09
and there was a
camp-out-protest in the works.
It was around 8 pm
I reported the following to
Portland Indy Media here:

These are the 4 video clips
that I posted on YouTube from that evening on 10.10.09:
Video 1 Whats This Protest About
Video 2 No Restrooms at Night
Video 3 Conduct Contract
video 4 Solidarity & Food

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Homeless in Portland

Portland Oregon September 2009

MAYOR SAM ADAMS is seeking feedback on elements of a new sidewalk management plan, which will replace the city's defunct and unconstitutional sit-lie law. Adams and City Commissioner Nick Fish told business leaders two weeks ago that they planned a new kind of sidewalk management package instead of another iteration of the sit-lie
["We Mean it This Time," News, Sept 17].

The new draft plan, posted on the mayor's website on Thursday, September 17, plans to align all city codes affecting sidewalk use in the same place, create a criminal zero-tolerance approach to illegal activity like offensive littering and harassment, improve homeless services, designate sidewalk through zones, establish a downtown retail strategy, and increase the number of restrooms available on the street.

"Portland has 4,804 miles of sidewalks, including 37,744 street corners; the Westside of downtown Portland alone comprises 152 miles of sidewalks and 1,778 corners," says Adams' website, explaining that a multitude of uses "must all share a sidewalk between five- and 15-feet wide."

So far, reactions among homeless advocates and those who have watch-dogged these issues since the city last passed a sit-lie law in 2007 have been mixed.
"If it's going to be something that's fair to everybody and used equally, then I'm okay with it," says Patrick Nolen from activist group Soapbox Under the Bridge. "The city needs to govern such things. My problem with the old law was it was used unequally against people experiencing homelessness."

Others are more skeptical.
"I think they're still grasping at straws, trying to find some way of telling people they can't sit, lie, or stand on a given area of the sidewalk," says Copwatch activist Dan Handelman. "They're trying to paint a happy face on what they've done before, but I doubt it will be enforced fairly."
The mayor hopes to have the new package approved by December at the latest.