Recommendations for Action in the MHCAN Crisis

Recommendations for Action in the MHCAN Crisis
by Robert Norse (rnorse3 [at] hotmail.com)
Sunday Sep 3rd, 2017 6:06 PM

MHCAN has faced a crisis for the last several years with police and city agencies breathing down its neck. The management of MHCAN and its Board of Directors has chosen to pursue, largely a low-profile work-behind-the-scenes approach. There’s been little publicity about the upcoming Special Use Permit meeting of the Planning Commission which Board Chair Steve Pleich says is slated for 9-28. A month ago, I wrote the following suggestions to the community.
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Text of the Flyer
AN APPEAL TO THE COMMUNITY TO SUPPORT MHCAN
By Robert Norse

HUFF (Homeless United for Friendship & Freedom) has many current and past members who have used MHCAN (Mental Health Clients Action Network) but are upset with current attacks, threats, and restrictions burdening its mission and its operation:

Demand City & County Agencies Take the Following Actions:

+++ End police collusion and surveillance with right-wing community organizations and unreasonably anxious neighbors and businesses trying to cook up “evidence” of a crime wave or public nuisance. The surveillance and heavy police presence has been frightening to clients and is an abuse of the police department’s funding and mission. We want assurances that this abusive behavior, supposedly either lessened or discontinued, will be definitely stopped and not resumed.

+++ Drop all proposed restrictive demands on MHCAN and hold public hearings on any new attempts to impose such conditions as restrictive hours, limiting daily client numbers, security guards, meeting bans, and other destructive restrictions that interfere with or work in direct opposition to its traditionally effective mission. This approach has created a hostile prison-like atmosphere at the Homeless (Lack of) Services Center and treats unhoused and disabled people like convicts.

+++ Restore autonomy to MHCAN, originally an effective client-run organization with an impressive track record for helping those in psychological distress, whatever their housing or financial status. MHCAN can and should determine its own policies and limits within normal city guidelines.

+++ Create a legal and firm policy of nondiscrimination against low-income people as well as establishing a protected class punishing violence against the unhoused as a hate crime here.

+++ Acknowledge the sidewalks, city benches, and other areas around MHCAN are public areas and restore the right of all community members to use them without fear of harassment–not subject to restriction or control by private interests, whatever their fears. Cite and prosecute real crimes. The campaign to remove visibly poor from the public domain is both unworthy and unconstitutional.

+++ Disentangle city and county funding from restrictive covenants and restore traditional practices at MHCAN generally or require public hearings to justify attempts to shrink its services.

+++ Establish in local law and policy of respecingt the rights of the disabled—whether the disability be physical or mental to include such obvious needs as the right to sleep, to use public spaces, to be secure in their persons and property, to be free from harassment by authorities and private vigilantes.

This letter reflects the views of Robert Norse and some HUFF members—and hopefully a large chunk of the informed community.

Flier by Norse of HUFF (Homeless United for Friendship & Freedom) 831-423-4833 http://www.huffsantacruz.org 309 Cedar 9-3-17

9:30 AM Bathrobespierre’s Broadsides Covers Lapis Road Residents Wirefire and Amber, Salinas Update from Wes White and a Flashback to June 9, 2013–Tune in at 101.3 FM or freakradio.org

Today’s Updates include Part 2 of the Amber/Wildfire Interviews of 8-31–the Deportation Day  in Lapis Road,  Part 2 of Wes White’s Salinas Update, Threats Against Poor Folks’ Pets–Report from local RV dwellers Pat and John Colby, and a lookback on Lapis Road from Displaced Activists Amber and Wildfire.

Today’s June 9, 2013 Flashback features Katenzjammer Keith McHenry on the Santa Cruz Aftermath of the Occupy Movement, Bathrobespierre Robert Norse on the Anti-Homeless Hit Parade of 2013 Laws, an Analysis of Take Back Santa Cruz, & Steve Schnaar on the SCPD Blockade of the Bike Church’s Bike Distribution to Poor Folks.   Ignore all phone numbers and meeting times except 831-423-4833.

Contact 575-770-3377 to volunteer different kinds of support for the Survival Sleepers now dispersed to the Post Office and points along Pacific Avenue  and support Food Not Bombs locally and those whose only resting place is an illegal piece of sidewalk.

Leave your comments and questions at the same number.   Still a $500 reward for any info leading to Free Radio’s finding a 10′ X 10′  studio space for Free Radio Santa Cruz to rent in Santa Cruz.

The complete original version of the June 9, 2013 flashback can be found at  http://radiolibre.org/brb/brb130609.mp3   It is considerably longer and includes more detail on Take Back Santa Cruz and further remarks by Keith McHenry.

Later in the day after the show has aired, the Sunday 9-3 show archives at http://radiolibre.org/brb/brb170903.mp3.

Lapis Road Partial Victory and Assorted Updates 6 PM tonight 8-31-17 on 101.3 FM

RV dwellers in north Monterey County won an apparent stay of execution down South; interviews with Wes White, Amber Viever, and Wildfire; MHCAN updates, and obscure Phil Ochs songs.

Current street reports and messages can be left at 831-423-4833.

The show streams on freakradio.org and archives at http://radiolibre.org/brb/brb170831.mp3

For info on how to act and not just listen while gentrification galooses take over the City and drive out the poor, go to the Food Not Bombs and  Freedom Sleeper facebook pages.  Or directly to the Main Post Office, or where ever the struggle is raging.

Freedom SleepOut #112 reportedly received soup and coffee–but no report on sleepers

Volunteer to support the Homeless struggling against Dehumanization at 575-330-3377 or by meeting with folks on the street.

Partial RV Residents Victory in Marina; HUFF Punts Again: NO 11 AM Meeting Wednesday– But There’s Still Stuff You Can Do to Fight City Council’s Home Grown Fascism Here

Though skipping another Wednesday meeting, HUFF members and sympathizers are still focused on our own local struggle against the long-term fascist wave against the homeless.

I’m still waiting for clarification from staff mouthpiece and Assistant City Manager Scott Collins just how far the new 72-hour police power extends.  It currently allows cops and rangers to issue Stay-Away orders from areas when they give out an infraction ticket.  The area seems to include Arana Gulch, Moore Creek, and the Pogonip as well as some smaller parks.

Go to http://scsire.cityofsantacruz.com/sirepub/mtgviewer.aspx?meetid=848&doctype=AGENDA and click on Item #20, then on  “School Safety Enhancement Zones Ordinance (CN) – Map” on the right side of the screen.    More details, hopefully from “Scapegoater” Scott when I get them.

This is a direct attack on poor people who try to sleep in the Pogonip at night–since there is no alternate shelter (and even when it is available to a few is often described as wretched, bug-ridden, unsafe, and dehumanizing).  I mistakenly wrote last week that this proposed banning-without-court-process power extended to all parks, which apparently it does not–only those within 300′ of a school  (again, see the map above).    Also while the law outrageously triples lengths of time that thugs in uniform can ban you from areas without a court conviction or trial, it does not triple the fines.

Final vote from the rubberstamping body comes in two weeks, but e-mail to the City Council can still be sent to them putting opposition on record at citycouncil@cityofsantacruz.com .  To read the detailed horrors of the original law, whose bans will triple in length, go to http://www.codepublishing.com/CA/SantaCruz/  and review 13.08.090 and 13.08.100–both anti-homeless laws passed in 2013, expanded in 2015, and now back for a final blow at the poor outside.

+++ write a letter to the Sentinel, Good Times, facebook friends, or other on-line media denouncing the ordinance.  See my story at https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2017/08/22/18802084.php (“Toxic Expansion of Stay-Away Ordinance Hits Council Agenda Today”) for description and discussion.

+++ Sign up to support homeless resistance by using the “appeal process” hastily added on to the Stay-Away law which requires the City Manager’s office to hear an appeal before the Stay-Away is implemented.  Contact Food Not Bombs at its Saturday and Sunday meals at the Post Office and Tuesday night outside City Hall.  Or go to their facebook page at Santa Cruz Food Not Bombs.  Leave a message there for HUFF or contact HUFF by phone at 831-423-4833.  Bring citations, reports of stay-away orders, and other street info to the Food Not Bombs literature table.
OTHER STRUGGLES

+++  Ongoing crackdown on MHCAN at a Public Hearing to “revoke and replace” their special unit permit according to Board of Director mouthpiece Steve Pleich.  He and his Board, after many months of hush-hush secrecy and “don’t rock the boat” tactics are calling for public letters and calls to the Planning Department in advance of their September 7th hearing.  Attention: Mike Ferry, City of Santa Cruz, Dept. of Planning and Community Development, 809 Center St., Room 206, S.C. 95060  or e-mail at mferry@cityofsantacruz.com Let us know of any new police or vigilante actions against MHCAN or their clients, as well as any internal “crackdown” regs within MHCAN itself.

 

+++ Monterey County Homeless Activists who a partial victory at the Monterey Board of Supervisors today getting a 90-day nighttime extension for the dozens of vehicular residents out on Lapis Road north of Marina.  Implicitly acknowledging they have no “resources”  (i.e. housing or a safe place to park their RV’s). the Board responded to the organizing effort of Becky Johnson and Wes White, signing up folks to show they weren’t “service-resistant”.  However the resolution passed, supposedly binding on the sheriffs, still requires residents to vacate between 10 AM and 6:30 AM.  Many of the vehicular homes have very poor gas mileage, their owners are poor, and half are not drivable.   Residents Amber and Wildfire are reportedly inventorying and helping mobilize people for the 8 a.m. Thursday deadline.  Support the Lapis Road RV Residents by contacting the Supervisors Luis Alejo and Jane Parker for a more reasonable settlement at  jane.parker@co.monterey.ca.us   luis.alejo@co.monterey.ca.us

 

+++ If you wish to work on Public Records, or learn about other HUFF projects, contact Bathrobespierre Robert of HUFF at 831-423-4833.  

Radio Reachback: 9:30 AM Bathrobespierre’s Broadsides Covers the latest Stay-Away Police Power Expansion at City Council as well as a Flashback to July 2, 2000 for a lengthy show: Tune in at 101.3 FM or freakradio.org

In addition to the City Council Stay-Away Slashjob and the Lapis Road Update, Dreamcatcher and James the Jeweler report from Pacific Avenue.

Today’s July 2, 2000 Flashback includes Call-in’s from Richard Quigley, Doug McGrath, Bob Lamonika, Kate Wells, Becky Johnson, and the V-Man.  Topics covered are Rancho Del Mar and the Sheriff’s Attack on Youth Counselor Jerry Henry The Midnight Execution of the Proposed Safe Sleeping Zones at City Council, Homeless Organizing under the short-lived ROAR (Restore Our Alienated Rights)  The Council’s Crushing of only open Medical Marijuana Dispensary in the City,  Civil Rights Attorney Wells Reviews a Variety of Local Cases,  the Dolphin-Lee/Nueva Vista Force Feeding, the Early Progress of “Needles on Wheels”–Forced Psychiatric Treatment at Home, and much more.  Ignore all phone numbers and meeting times except 831-423-4833.

 

Contact 575-770-3377 to volunteer different kinds of support for the Survival Sleepers now dispersed to the Post Office and points along Pacific Avenue  and support Food Not Bombs locally and those whose only resting place is an illegal piece of sidewalk.

Leave your comments and questions at the same number.   $500 reward for any info leading to Free Radio’s finding a 10′ X 10′  studio space for Free Radio Santa Cruz to rent in Santa Cruz.

The complete original version of the July 2, 2000 flashback can be found athttp://huffsantacruz.org/archive00

by scrolling down to the July 2, 2000 links.

Later in the day after the show has aired, the Sunday 8-27 show archives at http://radiolibre.org/brb/brb170827.mp3

Free Radio Santa Cruz Temporarily Off the Air–Instead of Today’s Bathrobespierre’s Broadsides Show, a Grim Look at the Stay-Away Law that Passed First Reading at City Council Last Tuesday

Toxic Expansion of Stay-Away Ordinance Hit Council Agenda Tuesday, Returns for Final Passage in September
by Robert Norse (rnorse3 [at] hotmail.com)
Tuesday Aug 22nd, 2017 updated August 24 4:20 p.m.

BLINDSIDED BY BIGOTRY
There was no prior public hearings nor any media announcement of the new law which bushwacked the community on Tuesday, only appearing on the agenda a week ago.   On 8-22 City Council voted on the First Reading of a harsh law expanding Councilmember Terrazas’ 4-Year old Anti-Homeless law today at its 2:30 PM Session. The law targets homeless community members for sleeping, being in a “park” after dark, obstructing the sidewalk, etc. It vastly expands the unconstitutional sweep of the current 13.08.100.
Agenda item #20 carried the deceptive ““Schools Safety Enhancement Zones” label to describe the vast expansion of police power

Familiar anti-homeless language like “nuisance crime” and “illegal behavior” are the usual code words for harassing and expelling homeless people from public spaces in a city with no available shelter for hundreds.  The same words peppered the staff presentation (See http://scsire.cityofsantacruz.com/sirepub/cache/2/o54x40tdjsjsx30w00mp1mry/463239708242017042248306.PDF )

MASSIVE SWEEP
The proposed law will include not just anyone within 300′ of a school, but anyone in any of the following parks as well as any adjacent sidewalks and public spaces: Arana Gulch, Neary Lagoon, Depot Park, Poets Park, Beach Flats Park, Harvey West Park, Pogonip (Open Space), Louden Nelson Park, Sergeant Derby Park, Mission Plaza Park, Star of the Sea Park, Moore Creek (Open Space), University Terrace Park .
Nice way to make the parks “homeless free” if you start giving longer Stay-Away orders (as has been regularly done for the last three years) to folks who sleep there at night.   And, of course, we know how massive a school children presence there is at night when homeless people are sleeping—particularly far away in the deep Pogonip, or down in the San Lorenzo benchlands.  It’s certainly a necessary precaution to sanitize the area by banning folks found sleeping there or just being there “after hours”.   We must have certain Rules of Conduct after all!

If you’re given a citation — even it’s unjustified, and dropped short of court — you are banned from the area (and other prior areas if you’ve received citations) for 72 hours.   If you return you face up to a year in jail and $1000 fine.

Since 2013, the use of “we don’t need to charge you in court” Stay-Away orders, have systematically and specifically impacted, if not targeted, homeless folks.

FEW CRIMINAL CRIMES BUT LOTS OF CRIMINAL POWERS GIVEN TO COPS & RANGERS
The “crime wave” being addressed is the usual: sleeping, being in a park after dark, smoking. Hundreds of citations and stay away orders were issued to folks.

No actual specifics regarding these “crimes” are provided in the staff report. Nor are there any particulars of the great threat to the schools that is used to label this grotesque expansion of police power.

It also provides massive police powers to criminalize protesters and outspoken Council critics, particularly homeless ones. The earlier 24-hour/1week Stay Away order was one device used to drive away Freedom Sleepers and the Survival Sleepers from City Hall.

Second reading will be required  at the next Council meeting which may give folks a little organizing time to speak against it in two weeks when it reappears for a rubberstamping.

SEE IT LIVE IN COLOR; READ ABOUT IT AND WEEP

 

EXTENSIVE EXCLUSION POWERS WITH NO COURT “PROTECTION”
This wording is horrendous in and of itself. It means if you are, say, given three infraction citations in three different places over the course of three days (or even three weeks, if the second ticket happens within a week of the first), the Stay-Away law empowers police to ban you for three months from all three areas.

All before you’ve gone to court to get a “fair trial”. And if you get a 4th ticket anytime within the next 18 months in any park or other area covered by MC 13.08.100, you can be banned for 1 1/2 years from all 4 areas. If at any time, you violate this police-imposed ban any time during these periods, you face a possible year in jail or $1000 fine. The standard fines are $200-400 for the original infraction crime.

RUBBERSTAMP “APPEAL” PROCESS COVERS CITY MANAGER’S ASS
The phony process for “appealing” a Stay-Away order involves going before an appointee of City Manager Martin Bernal, whose employees are the cops and rangers testifying against you if you file an “appeal” within 1 day. There are no “rules of evidence”, no official record of the proceeding, no provision permitting an audio recording, no right for the public or media to be present–in other words, no due process. Doo-doo process indeed.

The standard of proof is different before the City Manager’s kangaroo court–it’s “preponderance of the evidence” (51%) unlike the “beyond a reasonable doubt” standard of the courts. Hence you can be improperly banned for weeks from public property (particularly important for homeless people trying to survive by hiding out) before you get your court trial. And then even if found innocent, there’s no provision for reversing the Stay-Away.

To read the specifics of the “in-house” appeal of Stay-Away orders process, go to MC 13.08.100(b) at http://www.codepublishing.com/CA/SantaCruz/ .

We’ve heard a token squeak or two from our timid local ACLU– whose regional and national affiliates have quadrupled their cash reserves since the Trump victory protest. As for actually sending volunteers to help folks expose this travesty? We’re still waiting.

GOING TO COURT
Courts, of course, provide little real protection from infractions, even if you trek to and from the courthouse waiting for the citation to appear, getting to the arraignment, going to the trial. The overwhelming majority of unhoused folks getting the infraction citations that accompany the Stay-Away orders have neither time, energy, nor resources to do this.

In an infraction case, you get a “judge” rather than a jury trial. You face toxically police-partial judges–even if you disqualify the Dept. 10 Commissioner and send the case to a “real” judge. And even with video documentation of false claims, selective enforcement, and/or harassment by police or rangers, the “real” judges convicted activists Abbi Samuels and Keith McHenry in two separate trials recently. This had the appearance of being part of the City Manager/SCPD campaign to drive away peaceful Freedom Sleeper protesters and Survival Sleeper homeless from City Hall. Even from the half of the sidewalks adjacent where they slept every Tuesday night in protest.

Infraction cases normally go to the Commissioner in Dept. 10, previously the notorious Brimstone Baskett who went to great lengths to provide the semblance of fairness and then finds you guilty. Baskett has now been dumped on us as a “real” judge in Dept. 4. I have no new info on the new Commissioner in Dept. 10 who hears cases.

PUBLIC HYSTERIA POSTURER DAVID TERRAZAS’S MENDACIOUS MAP
This latest giveaway to the “homeless get out” crowd at Take Back Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz Neighbors, the SCPD, and conservative staffers comes out of the bowels of Vice-Mayor Terrazas’s “Public Safety” Committee. As far as I know, it’s done zero outreach among folks outside to determine the impact of the current Stay-Away law–which has harassed and excluded hundreds of poor people without shelter.

The map showing the dramatically expanded “Stay Away Even Before You Get Charged in Court” zones is at http://scsire.cityofsantacruz.com/sirepub/cache/2/d5tnqexznorzejga3wurjtew/463211108232017052436570.PDF.

Terrazas’s sedulous scare narrative whitewashes the actual bigotry agenda of this law. The protective clothing for this bigoted expansion of police power and invitation to vigilante action is “child welfare”–all without any statistical evidence. The boogyman label is “school safety enhancement” . If you examine the map, though, it’s mostly areas beyond the 300′ “safety zone” that suddenly kicks in triple stay-away times. (Again without a court appearance or finding of guilty).

SCARE STORIES AND REAL STATS
The “evidence” used to back this police power expansion were anecdotal stories from two Take Back Santa Cruz activists who regularly sit in the City Council who’d heard a story about a child being threatened in a park and another eye-witness account of a fight in a park. The only police stats presented in the agenda packet were the “alarming” but actually quite predictable significant percentage of police “calls for service” and “citations” in the parks.

There was no breakdown, of course, as to what those citations were for, whether there were convictions, nor how many were accompanied with stay away orders. The police statistics actually presented were used to dramatize a misleading narrative of “bad behavior”, “failure to maintain behavior standards”, “environmental degradation” and, of course, “public safety for our children” in the park areas.

However HUFF’s detailed study of Parks and Recreation citations for 2013 documents these were status crimes involving non-aggressive survival behavior by homeless people like smoking, sleeping, and being in a park after dark (See “Stay-Away From Human Rights ! An Activist Examines the Escalating Stay-Away Orders Law” at https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2014/10/25/18763326.php).

More stats on an earlier version of this law are at https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2014/10/12/18762778.php (“Nasty Anti-Homeless Stay-Away Laws to Get Exponentially Worse”).

To read some of the bigoted babble that goes on around this issue plus Sentinel coverage, go to http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/government-and-politics/20170822/santa-cruz-eyes-new-school-safety-zone-park-law .

MORE NEXT TIME
Why bother with real evidence and argument when you have a locked-in 5-2 majority on the City Council (it actually passed 4-1 with Brown and Chase absent). It’s hard to believe that rational, reasonable, mellow-sounding people like Vice-Mayor Terrazas seems to be…that they can pass this kind of straightforward repression. Terrazas has been rubberstamping like measure for years, though, through his Public Safety Committee.

Perhaps it’s raw meat thrown to the right-wing constituency, angered at the appearance of increasing numbers of visible homeless people (ironically becoming visible through being driven out of the parks and downtown). The appearance of action without the substance. More laws for useless and unconstitutional police actions.

More on the City Council capers last Tuesday when I muster up the energy. Free Radio Santa Cruz is currently off the air due to equipment problems, but I hope to go into the broader Council meeting in more detail next Sunday.

Another Week of HUFF Hiatus -NO 11 AM Meeting Today: But Stuff You Can Do to Fight City Council’s New Expanded Anti-Homeless Stay-Away Law and Other Nasty Attacks on the Poor

Though not meeting today, HUFF members and sympathizers are still focused on a resisting the War Against the Poor here.

The new 72-hour police power that allows cops to issue Stay-Away orders if they give out any infractions from all City parks, passed City Council 4-1 yesterday.  This is a direct attack on poor people who try to sleep in the Pogonip or San Lorenzo Park at night–since there is no alternate shelter (and when it available to a few was often regarded as wretched, bug-ridden, unsafe, and dehumanizing).  Assistant City Manager Scott Collins deceptively evaded when asked whether there were any shelter spaces to send those driven from the parks citing future collaboration with the Count

The law was dressed up in “protect the children” clothing as a “School Safety” measure.  No statistics citing specific problems with children were even attached to the staff report.

It will receive a final vote in two weeks to become law (which is fairly certain), but e-mail to the City Council can still be sent to them putting opposition on record at citycouncil@cityofsantacruz.com . If passed again in two weeks, he current 24-hour Stay-Away period will triple.


+++ write a letter to the Sentinel, Good Times, facebook friends, or other on-line media denouncing the ordinance.  See my story at https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2017/08/22/18802084.php (“Toxic Expansion of Stay-Away Ordinance Hits Council Agenda Today”) for a brief description.   Note: the law triples the length of cop-created Stay-Away time, but not the actual fine as misstated in my article.


+++ Sign up to support homeless resistance by using the “appeal process” hastily added on to the Stay-Away law which requires the City Manager’s office to hear an appeal before the Stay-Away is implemented.  Contact Food Not Bombs at its Saturday, Sunday, and Tuesday meals.  Or go to their facebook page at Santa Cruz Food Not Bombs.  Leave a message there for HUFF or contact HUFF by phone at 831-423-4833.


HELP FIGHT DISCRIMINATION AGAINST THOSE OUTSIDE IN OTHER ARENAS

+++ Restrictive library regulations (check out that fine print as you enter the downtown branch),  Let us know how library staff and “Security Thugs” are treating you.


+++  Ongoing crackdown on MHCAN at a Public Hearing to “revoke and replace” their special unit permit according to Board of Director mouthpiece Steve Pleich.  He and his Board, after many months of hush-hush secrecy and “don’t rock the boat” tactics are calling for public letters and calls to the Planning Department in advance of their September 7th hearing.  Attention: Mike Ferry, City of Santa Cruz, Dept. of Planning and Community Development, 809 Center St., Room 206, S.C. 95060  or e-mail at mferry@cityofsantacruz.com Let us know of any new police or vigilante actions against MHCAN or their clients, as well as any internal “crackdown” regs within MHCAN itself.

+++ Support Food Not Bombs and others who continue to support the Freedom Sleeper Tuesday Night protest at City Hall (there again for the 110th time, with food and frolic, though not necessarily any overnight sleepers).  Contact them if you wish to support their lawsuit against Santa Cruz’s anti-homeless laws (575-770-3377), to volunteer for FNB meal prep or protest support, or to provide information about ongoing harassment at San Lorenzo Park and elsewhere.  


+++ Keep informed on the struggles in other cities.  In Marina, RV dwellers are organizing with support from Monterey County Homeless Union activists Becky Johnson and Wes Modes.  See story at http://www.montereyherald.com/article/NF/20170814/NEWS/170819925  For updated accounts from real people impacted  by the crackdown, check out https://www.facebook.com/search/top/?q=monterey%20county%20homeless%20advocates

+++ If you wish to work on Public Records, or learn about other HUFF projects, contact Bathrobespierre Robert of HUFF at 831-423-4833.  


Toxic Expansion of Stay-Away Ordinance Hits Council Agenda Today

Tuesday Aug 22nd, 2017 8:41 AM
City Council will vote on the First Reading of a harsh law expanding Councilmember Terrazas’ 4-Year old Anti-Homeless law today at its 2:30 PM Session. The law targets homeless community members, triples the current $200 fines for sleeping, being in a “park” after dark, obstructing the sidewalk, etc. It vastly expands the unconstitutional sweep of the current 13.08.100.
Agenda item #20 carries the deceptive ““Schools Safety Enhancement Zones” label to describe the vast expansion of police power

Familiar anti-homeless language like “nuisance crime” and illegal behavior” are the usual code words for harassing and expelling homeless people from public spaces in a city with no available shelter for hundreds.

The proposed law will include not just anyone within 300′ of a school, but anyone in any of the following parks as well as any adjacent sidewalks and public spaces: Arana Gulch Neary Lagoon Depot Park Poets Beach Flats Park Harvey West Park Pogonip (Open Space) Louden Nelson Park Sergeant Derby Park Mission Plaza Park Star of the Sea Park Moore Creek (Open Space) University Terrace Park .

If you’re given a citation–even it’s unjustified, and dropped short of court–you are banned from the area (and other prior areas if you’ve received citations there) for 72 hours.

Since 2013, the use of “we don’t need to charge you in court” Stay-Away orders, have systematically and specifically impacted if not targeted homeless folks.

The “crime wave” being addressed is the usual: sleeping, being in a park after dark, smoking. Hundreds of citations and stay away orders were issued to folks

No actual specifics regarding these “crimes” are provided in the staff report. Nor are there any particulars of the great threat to the schools that is used to label this grotesque expansion of police power.

It also provides massive police powers too criminalize protesters, particularly homeless ones.

Second reading will be required which may give folks a little organizing time to speak against it in two weeks when it reappears for a rubberstamping.

There are many more details which I’m hoping to expand on in a future story.

Agenda report: http://scsire.cityofsantacruz.com/sirepub/cache/2/d5tnqexznorzejga3wurjtew/463088208222017083904996.PDF

Ordinance: http://scsire.cityofsantacruz.com/sirepub/cache/2/d5tnqexznorzejga3wurjtew/463088308222017083954745.PDF

 

TO COMMENT GO TO: https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2017/08/22/18802084.php

Morsels from Yesterday’s FNB Meal then a full FLASHBACK TO March 31, 2002; Show Airs 101.3 FM & freakradio.org Sunday morning 9:30 AM 8-20-17

The Introduction features Food Not Bombs interviews, an update on the Lapis Road Monterey County RV resistance, the Keith McHenry Guilty Verdict and Sentencing, and more.

This Sunday’s show March 31, 2002 Flashback reviews
         +++ City Council aftermath of its arrest of Bathrobespierre Robert for making a silent mock Nazi salute protesting the shutdown of Oral Communications by then-Mayor Christopher Krohn.
         +++ Hot words and extensive discussion of the protest at “Yuppie Planter”, the public area in front of New Leaf Market stolen by the City to drive away youth and hippie gatherings

Another historic flashback features the audio of Club Cruz #1 in 1996 discussing the “moderate” response to the Kennedy-Rotkin shutdown of the Coral St. Open Air Shelter–a program by Sherry Conable and Barbara Riverwomon to fund emergency shelter through the state parks as well as writer Celine-Marie Pasquale’s thoughts on the early anti-homeless laws.


Contact 575-770-3377 to volunteer different kinds of support for the Survival Sleepers now dispersed to the Post Office and points along Pacific Avenue  and support Food Not Bombs locally and those whose only resting place is an illegal piece of sidewalk.
 

Leave your comments and questions at the same number.   $500 reward for any info leading to Free Radio’s finding a 10′ X 10′  studio space for Free Radio Santa Cruz to rent in Santa Cruz.


The complete original version of the March 31, 2002 flashback can be found at http://huffsantacruz.org/archive02

by scrolling down to the March 31, 2002 links.

 

Later in the day after the show has aired, the Sunday 8-20 show also streams at http://radiolibre.org/brb/brb170820.mp3.  

Interviews with Community Activists Scott Graham, Linda Lemaster, Laura Tucker, Cherie Sheree, Becky Johnson, and Wes White on Emergency RV Resistance Down South 6 PM tonight 8-17-17 on 101.3 FM

Emergency call to support RV dwellers in north Monterey County whose vehicles are being towed awake two weeks before the supposed deadline; “Scope It Out” Scott Graham on the real history of the Cafe Pergolesi and why it’s being forced to close.

Current street reports and messages can be left at 831-423-4833.

The show streams on freakradio.org and archives at http://radiolibre.org/brb/brb170817.mp3

For info on how to act and not just listen while gentrification galooses take over the City and drive out the poor, go to the Food Not Bombs and  Freedom Sleeper facebook pages.  Or directly to the Main Post Office, or where ever the struggle is raging.

Freedom SleepOut #110 reportedly received soup and coffee–but no report on sleepers

Volunteer to support the Homeless struggling against Dehumanization at 575-330-3377 or by meeting with folks on the street.