|Protest Slumber Time at City Hall Grounds…Again…with Freedom SleepOut #47|
|Date||Tuesday May 31|
|Time||5:00 PM – 5:00 AM|
|Around ye olde Santa Cruz City Hall, with slumber to be likely pushed to the sidewalk, though sleepers may choose to spead out to different (all legally forbidden) locations.|
|Contact Name||Keith McHenry|
|Email Address||keith [at] foodnotbombs.net|
Warmer days, but still cold nights for those outside and without basic human rights. One of these is the right to sleep legally without fear of police harassment not anywhere and everywhere–but somewhere. This is the aim of the Freedom Sleepers. With no shelter available,
We’re hoping that those fed up with the current system, on the right and left, will support the right of poor people to be free of this kind of state abuse. Many hundreds, perhaps thousands, attended a Bernie Sanders rally today. We call upon those same folks to support a restoration of civil rights locally.
Folks sleeping outside should also consider giving a call to the River St. Shelter at 459-6644 to put their name on the waiting list, with a renewal call every three days. Being on the waiting list supposedly means all 6.36 (camping, blanket, and sleeping tickets) will be automatically dismissed by the City Attorney.
THE COMING CRACKDOWN
Last week, City Council expanded the anti-homeless laws there to include many traditional vendors of handicrafts and jewelry, as well as banning face painting, oil painting, beading, sewing, and many other innocent and unobstructive behaviors on Pacific Avenue completely in a very restrictive interpretation of the 1st Amendment.
The suffocation of street culture on Pacific Avenue and surrounding streets downtown impacts unhoused and poor people. Many vendors there live in their vehicles. Peaceful sparechangers will now have to compete for space with guitarists, tablers, and others. Having a human or cat companion is illegal, as well.
The number of “exempt” zones (the areas demarked with blue brackets on the sidewalk) have been reduced, the requirements tightened, and the highly unpopular “move every hour” law made more severe. No warnings are required before the giving of $250 citations after 61 minutes, even if you agree to move along.
RUMBLINGS OF RESISTANCE
Craft artists like Featherlady continue to vow resistance to the new ordinances when they go into effect around June 24th. Shindig, Sam, James and other craftfolk continue to display and sell their wares. On Sunday previously jailed painters Alex and Joff were still displaying their work outside the exempt zones (also called blue boxes) and being ignored by police (who previously gathered in groups of more than 70 to arrest them a month ago).
All are invited to drop by the Freedom Sleepers from 5 PM Tuesday to 9 AM Wednesday. Or check out the HUFF meeting at 11 AM at the Sub Rosa Cafe at 703 Pacific Ave.
More information on the Council’s “Vanish the Vendors” law:
“Mathews Council Crushes Handicraft Vendors; Freedom SleepOut #46 Soldiers On”
Robert Norse wrote up this event description.
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