Advocacy Groups for 'The Homeless' to Hold Mass Rally To #LeaveNoOneBehind
By Alan Gray
LeaveNoOneBehind Homelessness is NOT a Crime
Human rights, housing first, and social justice advocacy groups plan to hold a rally on World Homeless Day (10/10/2014) at 8am at Oscar Grant Plaza (formerly Frank O'Gawa Plaza).
Advocates say they will march to Wiley W Manuel Court House, at 661 Washington Street, in Oakland CA. The aim of the march is to raise awareness to efforts across the bay area and the nation to criminalize homelessness with inhumane, uncompassionate, unconstitutional laws. Advocates say this essentially makes it illegal for some people to exist.
From "No Sit-Stand-Lie" ordinances to "No Camping" ordinances to the criminalization of sharing food, it is clear that there is a war on the homeless, advocates say. They promise to #LeaveNoOneBehind because "Homelessness is NOT a Crime."
Aaron Colyer, a formerly homeless, disabled, United States Marine Corps Veteran with PTSD was ticketed on July 24, 2014 for "Sleeping/Living in a Vehicle." Mr. Colyer was homeless at the time and was living in his van with his PTSD Service Dog Captain when Alameda Police violated his rights, threatened him with arrest, and essentially cited him with being homeless 500 yards away from the old Alameda Naval Station.
The action can be seen in this video clip:
The City Attorney has been asked to request the City Council withdraw the ordinance in light of the June 19, 2014, United States Circuit Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, decision in Desertrain vs. City of Los Angeles, (No. 11-56957). In that case the Court overturned the City of Los Angeles' ordinance banning use of vehicles as "living quarters." The analysis set forth in Desertrain, applies to the City of Alameda's ordinance as well.
With the current economic situation and the ever increasing cost of rent and living in the bay area, more and more people are becoming homeless and/or living in their vehicles. As more and more states ban sleeping, camping, sitting, walking, sharing food and existing, Utah has taken a different approach, a Housing First approach. Instead of criminalizing homelessness, they are providing case management and housing and they are saving money by doing so.
Barbara Thomas, former Vice Mayor and City Councilwoman of Alameda City is representing Mr. Colyer and has scheduled a hearing for October 10/10/2014 at 9:00am in Department 102 at the Wiley W. Manuel Court House, 661 Washington Street, Oakland, CA.
The hearing was intentionally scheduled to coincide with World Homeless Day to raise awareness for the criminalization of the homeless and veteran homelessness. No one in America should be homeless, homelessness is NOT a crime and activists say they will #LeaveNoOneBehind.
For more information go to; https://www.facebook.com/events/287846578071123
Contact Aaron Colyer at 423-277-7204
Alan Gray is the publisher of NewsBlaze, the independent online newspaper for thinking people. Read more stories by Alan Gray.
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