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Related Categories: Santa Cruz Indymedia | Health, Housing, and Public Services | Police State and Prisons View other events for the week of 4/18/2017
Freedom Sleepers # 93 - Sleep-Out to End the Sleeping Ban
Date Tuesday April 18
Time 3:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Location Details
Santa Cruz City Hall 809 Center Street, Santa Cruz
Event Type Protest
Organizer/AuthorKeith McHenry
The Freedom Sleepers will be sleeping at City Hall again tonight. Please join us!

Many people are being driven out in to the rain and their belongings taken by Rangers and Police. This must stop. Freedom Sleeper Abbi Samuels was arrested last week filming the police forcing those sleeping under the City Hall awning to move out into the rain. As you can imagine trying to stay warm and finding a way to dry one's blankets after spending the night standing in the rain.

There is also a All-In: A Community Seeks Solutions to Homelessness meeting at tonight at 6:00 at the Santa Cruz Public Libraries - Downtown Branch, 224 Church St, Santa Cruz

Other Freedom Sleepers events this week
Wednesday, April 19, 2017 - 6:00 PM
Freedom Sleepers Movie at UCSC
Kresge Seminar Room #159, UCSC, Porter-Kresge Rd, Santa Cruz

Monday, April 24, 2017 - 6:00 PM
Freedom Sleepers Movie
American Tin Cannery #209, 150 Ocean View Blvd, Pacific Grove

There are solutions to ending homelessness in Santa Cruz but city and county leaders do not have the political will to take the steps needed. Today's Santa Cruz Sentinel reports on the Bob Lee Partnership for Accountability Connection and Treatment program or PACT.

"PACT participants represent “a small subset of the local homeless population that tends to have a high proportion of arrests, citations and use of emergency medical services,” according to the evaluators."

"In the year before they joined the program, the 153 people reached by PACT accumulated 1,531 citations, 458 ambulance runs, 545 emergency room visits at Dominican Hospital, 1,054 jail bookings and 7,165 nights in jail. These services cost $1.99 million."

"Some 25 percent of the citations were for sleeping outdoors, 16 percent for open containers of alcohol, and 8 percent for smoking in no-smoking zone. Other citations were for remaining on bus or park property after being asked to leave and sitting or lying on a sidewalk."
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Added to the calendar on Tuesday Apr 18th, 2017 9:44 AM

Comments  (Hide Comments)

by Razer Ray
Tuesday Apr 18th, 2017 6:36 PM
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[Image: FoxNews is really anti-news. People who watch no news know more than a fox viewer]

Don't mislead. There is no "Sleeping Ban". The SCPD finally got the 411 on Bell v Boise. There are people sleeping all over the sidewalks downtown and in doorways too except... wait for it... If there's a "No Trespassing Letter" at some doorway which means there's an official notice in the window or wall with the no trespassing code. There's lots of spots that have them. few that don't. I haven't seen the PD bounce people from those places when it's raining either.

But I gotta tell ya... besides all that ...The 'right' to sleep in a doorway is really no right worth having you know? I stick by the ORIGINAL IDEALS of FreedomSleepers and DEMAND A LEGAL CAMPING AREA IN A CITY PARK with oversight by non-intrusive but official security, giving people a decent and SAFE place to sleep.

But as for now if there's no "No Trespassing letter" or notice, the SCPD doesn't seem to be waking anyone up or ticketing unless perhaps you remain so late you interfere with business openings or are literally a trip hazard in the middle of the sidewalk. Then, again, the charge wouldn't be 'camping'. Nor, honestly, should anyone lay in the middle of the sidewalk unless they need an ambulance, or interfere with the businesses.
by Robert Norse
Tuesday Apr 18th, 2017 9:40 PM
...for the minor fact that police, security guards, and rangers are running elderly women, disabled folks, and just about anyone out into the rain from the eaves of City Hall at night, Boise v. Bell notwithstanding.

True that's done under MC 13.04.-011 (trespassing on a "closed" "park"), but the point, of course, is to drive unhoused folks out of sight and out of town.
by R
Wednesday Apr 19th, 2017 9:03 PM
The point I WAS MAKING Robert There IS NO CAMPING BAN. There's TRESPASSING LAWS THAT YOU WILL NEVER EVER EVER CIRCUMVENT (Because in a capitalist society Private Property is GOD).

Saying it's a "Camping Ban" not only MAKES YOU SOUND STUPID, it's simply not true ... and that make you sound like you're LYING when you repeat it despite the FACTS pointed out. Facts quite easy to verify.

Further ... Your "old women in the rain" bullshit bores the living FUCK out of me Robert. A SAFE PLACE TO SLEEP THAT EVERYONE AGREED ON (Phil Posner... remember him?) WOULD HELP, BUT YOU AND YOUR HUFF FRIENDS ABANDONED THAT BASIC IDEA OF FREEDOMSLEEPERS to put PRESSURE ON THE CITY TO CREATE THAT SAFE SPACE and you keep peddling this BULLSHIT about some neutered to do nothing at all 'sleepover' that no one goes to except for the fact there's a FNB meal served.

You're THREW OUT the GOAL of FreedomSleepers ( a SAFE SECURE CAMPSITE) and reduced it to hawking hatemail about a "Camping Ban" that doesn't even exist anymore... and now you whine about 'women in the rain... Pitiful.

Ps. Saw Gail whatshername and Dennis whatshisname this morning at the roaster giving me the evil eye as if I REALLY give a flying. She and Dennis can vouch for the end result of the Bell v Boise brief because you never seem to be out and about in the morning downtown to see anything resembling the facts of the matter. People sleeping all over downtown, and still NO SAFE PLACE TO SLEEP. And just in case you're stupid enough to think it... NO, a Protest Camp IS NOT a safe secure place to sleep.
by Robert Norse
(rnorse3 [at] hotmail.com) Friday Apr 21st, 2017 7:27 AM
It is a bogus "trespass law" that's being used to harass homeless people sleeping at City Hall. Fundamentally an unconstitutional series of edicts (under the ever-expanding MC 13.04.011) which results in new "closed at nght" signs being posted in area after area. It has nothing too do with private property, but represents the government's abusive constriction of public space too drive homeless people away.

It impacts the Tuesday night Freedom Sleepers and the rest-of-the-week Survival Sleepers, as I call them. As well as anyone trying to sleep at night in the "public" parks. It may even expand to the public sidewalks along Pacific where the "Downtown Rangers" are now ostentatiously patrolling.

While for much of the last two years, there has been a small turnout at the Tuesday night Freedom Sleepers, in the last two months the number of folks sleeping regularly all week-long has significantly increased. Anyone can check City Hall tonight. Since the closing of the Winter Shelter in early April 10-30 people have been sleeping there nightly including old women seeking to get out the rain.

That may be "boring" to some but the women tell me they're just trying too find a safe place to sleep out of the rain. This is somethiing HUFF (Homeless United for Friendship & Freedom) has supported for 3 decades in addition to opposing the anti-homeless Downtown Ordinances and the "Camping" (i.e. survival sleeping) Ban.

And, yes, in spite of drug and theft problems, some regard the presence of others within shouting distance as a form of protection. The fact that it's being done next to the Mayor's office is a visible protest for the objective of immediate safe places to sleep.

City Hall is visible to other eyes and the eyes of cameras and cellphones, though admittedly ths hasn't stopped police/ranger/securitythug harassment. See "Police Drive Homeless People Into the Rain" video at https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2017/04/17/18798509.php#18798553 .
You can also listen to their voices on my twice weekly Free Radio Santa Cruz show archived at http://radiolibre.org/brb/.

Assembling peacefully at the site of the city government with a protest sign (even if standing up and awake) is one of those basic "liberal" rights whose removal has been submissively tolerated here. Tme to dump 13.04.011--which gives Trumpian authority to the head of Parks and Rec.

The "closed area" edicts at City Hall and the library grounds were in response to the"safe[r] place to sleep" protesters under Ed Frey who set up first at the Courthouse and then at City Hall.

And yes, Virginia, there really is a Sleeping Ban(MC 6.36.010) and people are getting tickets for it, though not along the sidewalk near City Hall, thanks to the persistent Freedom Sleepers. Folks have been reporting them elsewhere in town and showing them to me at the Red Church on Monday nights.

Cops, I imagine, may prefer trespass tickets where there are "closed" public areas and on private property because of the potential threat of court challenge (though we've had lots of talk and no action) and its PR impact. Bell v. Boise looks pretty dead under Trump, but perhaps there are some new updates?

While your class-based analysis is often helpful, your personal attacks aren't. Other activists aren't the enemy, no matter how much you disagree with them. The real power to oppress lies in the government, the business community, and the corporate gentrrifiers.

I encourage folks to simply stop by and talk with folks any night or morning at City Hall to get the straight story.
by Razer Ray
Friday Apr 21st, 2017 6:45 PM
RN: "That may be "boring" to some but the women tell me they're just trying too find a safe place to sleep out of the rain."

Sleeping in the sidewalk at a protest doesn't qualify as 'a safe place to sleep'.

RN: "The "closed area" edicts at City Hall and the library grounds were in response to the"safe[r] place to sleep" protesters under Ed Frey who set up first at the Courthouse and then at City Hall."

Yup. You probably think that reaction is 'progress'. Instead of continuing the original intent of FreedomSleepers to PRESSURE THE CITY AND COUNTY for a secured and patrolled place to sleep for the night which WAS a distinct possibility. Instead, as soon as Ed Frey stepped aside, the people who continued it also 'stepped aside' on the solution proposed and now offer none. Like I said ... You probably think that's 'progress'.

"Sleeping Ban(MC 6.36.010) and people are getting tickets for it,"

You can't show me a MC 6.36.010 ticket that isn't a result of someone sleep in a doorway till the middle of the morning and rangers show up... And I DO MEAN "The middle of the morning". To show me anyone whose ticket is 'middle of the night' wake up call you'd have to produce some drunks who partied in a doorway until the cops showed up and the cops, figuring the idiots deserved it, wrote everything down. They're the same kind of schmucks who co-dependently whine to you Robert, and the rest of us just ROTF nervously realizing THEY are more of a threat than the police to our camp spots. They're the reason gats go in doorways and No Trespass signs pop up where they weren't previously and I can say with total assurance those 6.36.010 charges get removed if the people ever actually show up in court, Everyone gets the 'laundry list' of charges... But when it comes to court time they simply aren't on the list anymore ESPECIALLY if you say anything about it and don't just pleads out.

But the gist is if you coop in a doorway without a no trespassing order, just coop, and get up in the morning by, oh say 7am or so, and gtfo, YOU DO NOT GET TICKETED. You can't produce one that was written under those circumstances. ESPECIALLY when it's raining or cold. You can't produce one Robert. They simply aren't getting written, and as far as laws on the books? I don't give a fuck if a law they can no longer use wastes ink in their documents, nor should anyone else. If they TRY using it in court... THEN you might accomplish redaction by court order. But barring that, the city could write a law mandating everyone wear their underwear on the outside of their clothes. Then unless they actually try to enforce it... It simply doesn't matter what they ORDAINED.

"Bell v. Boise looks pretty dead under Trump"

The suit appears to be permanently dropped long before the Orangutan was president but the Statement of Intent stands until withdrawn or otherwise made invalid. I can't really see any change unless a court case brings it up, and honestly, the Statement relieves the Federal government of a LOT of responsibility for housing people because HEY, you aren't criminal for camping so there's no real reason to provide housing for displaced workers. I can't imagine the DOJ withdrawing it causing the federal government to have to provide shelter funds to states and cities.
by Pat Colby
Friday Apr 21st, 2017 9:17 PM
Razor Ray posts that unhoused people are not being roused, run off, woken and forced to move in the middle of the night. Maybe for him it is true but nightly I witness and document with video unhoused folks being terrorized, tortured and harassed by SCPD so they can't get sleep nor be safe from the cold, wind and rain. They are raided at 1-2-3-4 am sometimes once a night—sometimes as many as four times a night! They are not just being rousted at 7am as Razor Ray claims. He has a limited perception of what is truly happening perhaps due to a biased self view.

I have been witnessing and documenting this ongoing nightly. I am glad people are seeking some kind of limited torture free shelter sleeping at City Hall on nights other than Tuesday. I have videoed the SCPD in the middle of the "NIGHT"! Trying to find petty reasons to disrupt these people trying to get some undisturbed sleep. Nobody has ever called it safe but they have a higher chance of getting a couple (3-5) hours of sleep before being woken up and moved along. I have had to get up out of my van into the cold to follow SCPD officers with video to get them to move along and leave the sleeping folks alone! Sometimes once more often 2-4 times a night!

This is the reality of what is happening! No bias no rose colored glass no fictions. All in all it is a waste of taxpayer money when around all the bars and nightclubs housed drug dealers in their fancy cars are left unimpeded by SCPD to conduct their illegal activity. If we want the drugs and related crime to be addressed and end—these are the people whom the SCPD should be focusing on! For some reason the City of Santa Cruz and SCPD don't really want to end nor disrupt the drug dealing and using culture of this city! If the SCPD focused on and put their resources into "the drug use, addiction and dealing culture" which equals to drug dealers and buyers (housed and unhoused) then they could make SC less drug friendly so the people who are magnets to this culture would go somewhere else. Important people must be profiting from the massive easy availability of drugs and liquor in this city!
by Razer Ray
Sunday Apr 23rd, 2017 8:12 PM
Pat Colby: "Maybe for him it is true but nightly I witness and document with video unhoused folks being terrorized, tortured and harassed by SCPD."

Pics or it didn't happen... Iow, hearsay.

Supply pics and if I can identify the people and place I can most likely tell you WHY it happened.

It's really that simple. I have to live with the fuckups, and I know all the fuckups.. SOME HOUSELESS PEOPLE are just lucky other houseless people don't 'float them out to sea on icebergs'. The so-called "Homeless" are not a monolithic sociological population and there are just as many losers and fuckups in our cohort as there are anywhere. Unlike at the office though, those fuckups and losers actually endanger us ... more than any midnight raid by cops. Because they CAUSE midnight raids by cops. Hence the phase "Cop Magnet". No one except a cop magnet likes a cop magnet.

Except perhaps people wanting to sensationalize and use the cop magnet's self-created dilemma.
by Pat Colby
Sunday Apr 23rd, 2017 8:28 PM
I have videos I have yet to posted. Guess you didn't read my post closely? Keith and Abbi have posted videos! When I get availability to internet to post my dozen videos might that convince you of the TRUTH, perhaps, because all this misinformation hurts the plight of the poor and homeless plus allows the city and police to abuse and harass freely?!

I have my doubts!
by Razer Ray
Monday Apr 24th, 2017 7:45 AM
Then why didn't you link them?

Or maybe you're keeping your own private collection?

Oh, and skip the ones on Tuesday nights at city hall or vicinity. The point of 'protests' is the cops might show up right?

Show me a (1) rainy night with (2) identifiable people where the (3) cops are evicting them from a (4) spot that does not have a no trespassing order.

In return I'll give you a narrative of what happened despite the fact I wasn't there.

It's easy when you actually know the people.

Ps. I sleep n a quite visible doorway downtown and I didn't get a ticket all... winter... long.

AAMOF, and I HAVE a WITNESS, a mean threatening drunk plopped (literally) into my doorway at 2 am a couple of weeks ago... Was too drunk to do anything but threatened to 'slice my pendejos' (while lying flat on his back playing with himself) when my partner and I politely asked him to stop singing loudly. About 3 or 4 minutes later a cop's there... Apparently the guy threatened someone down the street before arriving,... Then there were 5 cops ... and they took about 10 minutes to gently coax him into a police car.

As they were leaving one of the cops said to us: "Have a good night."

I responded, ironically: "Come back anytime", and off they went, and the rest of the night went better for us thanks.

Sorry if that doesn't fit your narrative but it's exactly what happened. I CAN produce a witness. Someone you probably know by sight, but never had as a bunkmate.

Now... Post the videos Pat
by Pat Colby
Tuesday Apr 25th, 2017 1:11 AM
Now you posted the obvious. you get special treatment that the majority of homeless people don't. The property owner allows you to sleep is what you are saying. That is a different story because otherwise private property is considered trespassing if you don't have permission from owner. You are using apples to make an argument for oranges. Just because it doesn't happen to you doesn't make it a reality for everyone. You are worse then the bigots who criminalize the poor and homeless—you prepose to be better than the rest of us. All high and mighty.

Guess what John and I don't get ticketed either but it doesn't mean others aren't being cited. We are the exception to what the police are doing to other homeless people. I am fighting along with other activists to make our exception. the standard not further blaming the victims!

Again the videos aren't posted because I have limited access to high speed internet. Internet period. It takes at least 45-1 hour of continuous internet to post a short video. I am not trying to hide the facts. I can't wait to expose the harassment, abuse and unbelievable treatment homeless people suffer at the hands of the SCPD.
by Razer Ray
Tuesday Apr 25th, 2017 10:29 AM
No. No I didn't. I just stood there watching. Never seen these particular cops before in my life.

But I'd suggest FUCKUPS receive 'special treatment' and the rest of us go undisturbed.

Now... Post the video you said you had of people being rousted in the middle of the night with the simple criteria:

(1) rainy night with (2) identifiable people where the (3) cops are evicting them from a (4) spot that does not have a no trespassing order.

Ps. On rainy nights the police won't even roust you if there's a No Trespassing order as long as there's no direct complaint ... as ANYONE who actually goes downtown early in the morning (5/6/7 am) when it rains can attest.
by Razer Ray
Saturday Apr 29th, 2017 8:42 AM
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A BEAUTIFUL morning it is too!
by Razer Ray
Saturday Apr 29th, 2017 8:44 AM
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The only problem is, the 'right' to sleep in a doorway, or toes-to-nose with someone at a barely-ventilated 'warming center' not designed for the use...
by Razer Ray
Saturday Apr 29th, 2017 8:59 AM
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That 'right' is no right worth having. Institutional 'shelters', whether city-run or Privatized, like Brent' Adam's operation, will not resolve the problem.

Further, I'm almost positive the city allows people to sleep out downtown until late (they were all gone by 8am) like this just so the tourists and business people will say, no, not "How can the city have been so remiss as to destroy these people's opportunity to become part of the community?"... They think (because of anti-homeless propaganda in the local media, indoctrination about social-climbing, and the physical representation of a fear they could be next), "how come the police don't come and do something about this? We need more cops?", and thew city WILL send more cops. Instead of community services focused on Santa Cruz displaced workers... At least the ones capable of work, who aren't eligible for 'gubmint checks' and subsidized prison-like 'housing', a cohort that already gets more-or-less 95% of all available 'homeless funds', because the city, and it's so-called "Homeless activists" can't think their way out a socioeconomic 'paper bag', and it suits the commercial property interests just fine to have people sleeping on the sidewalk as human advertising for 'more cops and more laws', and a publicly paid patrol, the SCPD, for their shitty public-space shopping mall full of vacant storefronts.