Majority of City Hall campers move to property near 2nd and Thor
SPOKANE, Wash. – The majority of people who were camping outside of Spokane City Hall have moved to an area near 2nd and Thor.
The group had been camped out on the sidewalk since Friday as part of a protest supported by Jewel’s Helping Hands.
They were told on Tuesday they must vacate the area by 10:46 a.m. Thursday or have their property removed by the city.
As of Thursday afternoon, all but a handful of people had moved to the property in east Spokane, which is owned by the Washington Department of Transportation.
Jewel’s Helping Hands has been asking the city for land.
“If the city says yes, you could use this parcel of land for four months,” said Julie Garcia, who’s in charge of the organization. “Four months is all that’s needed. And in four months, they could figure somewhere permanent for them to go.”
The group of campers argues that the city does not have enough low-barrier shelter space for the area’s homeless population.
The city, however, said there has been bed space with Spokesman Brian Coddington saying open space has doubled since the protest started.
“It’s disappointing to do all the work to add additional resources to the system and to watch it go unused,” Coddington said.
Bed space is tracked daily by the Community, Housing and Human Services department in this document:
Garcia claims those beds aren’t viable options for those protesting.
“No matter, I don’t care if there’s 106 beds anywhere,” she said. “There’s not people going into those beds for whatever reason, that doesn’t mean you deserve to die on our streets.”
WSDOT said that as of now, they do not have plans to move campers from their property.
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