Freedom Sleepers Bed Down for #63 While Salinas Fights Camping Ban

Date Tuesday September 20
Time 5:00 PM – 9:00 AM

Location Details At the edge of the seat of government–Santa Cruz City Hall–unholy birthplace of anti-homeless laws. Banned from peaceful protest at night, the sleepers will be positioned on the Center St. sidewalk and assorted spots nearby throughout the night and into the morning. The Sleep-Out will run from Tuesday afternoon through mid-morning Wednesday.

There will be no City Council meeting today (every 2nd and 4th Tuesday are the regular times). City bathrooms have recently been “closed for vandalism”; city employees have their own special bathrooms to use behind locked doors not available to the public. New portapotties reinforced with wooden structure –instead of opening existing bathrooms at night–are only open after 10 PM. They can be found at the parking lot adjacent to Cedar and Union streets, another at the corner of Cedar and Lincoln, kitty-corner from the Calvary Episcopal Church.

Reports from the levee suggest anti-homeless hysteria masquerading as “public safety” has prompted both increased police and ranger harassment of the citizenry generally who linger along the levee path, even during the day. Ricardo Lopez, a levee resident, reports massive bulldozing of brush along the levee to uncover the small population of survival campers there.

Event Type
Organizer/AuthorKeith McHenry (story by Norse)
Emailrnorse3 [at]

With reports coming in of wretched conditions at the Homeless (Lack of) Services Center, along with an essentially closed program that requires a ‘path to housing” (i.e. government money) to get in, it’s little wonder the Freedom Sleepers continues to gather each Tuesday night in front of City Hall to defy the City’s Sleeping Ban for unhoused people.

Recent Freedom Sleep-outs are discussed and pictured in “Getting a Good Night’s Sleep with the Freedom Sleepers” at

The local ACLU [American Civil Liberties Union] has announced an open “Forum on Homelessness” featuring Fresno writer and activist Mike Rhodes to be held Wednesday October 5th 7-9 PM at the Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History at 705 Front St. More info at

Other City Council candidate forums where homeless advocates may want to raise unmentionable issues from the audience or by protest inside or outside the event include September 21 6:30 PM: Democratic Central Committee Endorsement Forum, Community Foundation 7807 Soquel Dr. Aptos • September 22 6-9 PM Downtown Association Candidate Forum, 307 Church St.

Salinas City Council is slated to consider First Reading of an anti-homeless sleeping ban dressed up as a “Camping Ban” which criminalizes “camping equipment” such as sleeping bags.

The staff report is at staff report at .

The proposed law is at . It’s apparently designed to remove peaceful nighttime protesters who have slept nightly outside Salinas City Hall for nearly six months now.

See “Speak Out Against the Proposed Camping/Loitering Ordinance at Salinas City Council Meeting ” at

Organizer Wes White, who has videoed and supported the Santa Cruz Freedom Sleepers and backed supposedly pro-homeless Santa Cruz City Council candidates has expressed dismay at their failure to respond to what he describes as a historic confrontation today at Salinas City Hall (200 Lincoln Ave.) at 3 PM. He encourages reciprocity between activists in the two cities and urges folks to come today. Contact Robert Norse at 831-423-4833 for more transportation information.

Added to the calendar on Tuesday Sep 20th, 2016 10:55 AM