Monday, December 7, 2009

40 Homeless Juveniles In Eureka Need Help

Capdiamont's web blog had this story on Saturday. 
Local homeless advocate Betty Chin located the kids and is asking for help.  Items needed are phone cards, blankets, cots, sleeping bags, dark colored tarps, tents, foam pads, canned food, camping stoves, personal hygiene items etc.
I checked out the drop off location this morning and left some supplies.   The location to drop off donations is North Coast Surgical Specialists, 2321 Harrison Avenue, near St. Johseph hospital.  Their hours are 8 am to 5 pm week days.
I hope to get Betty Chin on the air to talk more about this.  Capdiamont says some of the kids are wards of the County.

Also here is an up date to the closing by EPD of the Tarp Shelter Homeless Camp at Eureka City Hall.
Jack Nounnan sent me this.
Eureka police crackdown and close self managing shelter providing food and safe sleeping for those without homes

Police last night surrounded, made arrests then tore down the month old tent shelter complex set up at the Eureka City Hall, Humboldt Co., Calif., under siege by the Eureka Council, warning this weekend they would not tolerate this safe haven much longer.This encampment has fulfilled the immediate needs of people without homes, who daily face harsher weather conditions of night cold and/or rains. They're a people neither permitted on private or public lands. Where are they to go?

Among us are older folks, including numbers of vets, some handicapped with broken bodies, folks terribly stressed by their lives, those who've lost jobs, mothers and fathers, and many young, with all kinds of professional, academic and hard working backgrounds, all appreciative of a safe haven and still intent upon not just survival, but making a life.

We ask everyone who hears this message to help by reaching the Eureka City Council and other City officials in demanding real answers be offered to meet these immediate needs.
Eureka City Council members: One message for all 707- 441-4172

In talking with one city official Sunday, it was made clear we would be raided soon, and they 'asked our cooperation' in finding another place. We know of none, as surely as they do... precisely why we have been there. The threat of arrest and worse already drove most back to the streets for the night.

Warning signs of arrest and barricades were posted Friday around the City Hall parking lots where the encampment has set up each evening, providing home cooked food, and fresh bedding..and in the morning dismantled and gone before business begins. Police have been more obvious, cruising by often, one stopping to ticket or arrest some of the homeless on the sidewalk adjacent to the camping site for J walking or miscellaneous charges.

Police had originally and publicly stated if the encampment did not interfere with business, it was not their problem. The encampment has been open to all, turning no one away who needed a meal, but making clear to all that to stay and use the shelter, meant no drinking or drugs while there and monitored throughout the night.
City officials have asked what we want and been told:

1) People without homes need to have a safe space to sleep and cover themselves against

the weather, called "camping" by the city and criminalized.

2) People be given the right to manage such a space, without city oversight or police


3) City ordinances, which criminalize rest or sleep be eliminated, which are in direct

violation of the 8th Amendment to our Constitution... and thus resolving police enforcement.

of harassing, ticketing, confiscation of personal property and worse.

4) Lastly that it be recognized that the cities present position of planning and developing procedures for the future will obviously meet only a mere fraction of the critical need, regardless of when they finally take effect, while none of such city planning meets the immediate needs of the great many people without homes.

These same officials asked if we were prepared to manage a space provided for those without homes and were told; "Of course", just as we've done for the past month at the doors of City Hall.

The ambivalence of city authorities and the community is an ongoing dilemma. On one hand great enthusiasm and benevolence by certain people, churches, the city and even official police endorsement for providing food and clothing during the day, but with nightfall, the city and police turning against their presence, sending the wrong message to the community at large, of city sponsored prejudice through enforcement of their illegal ordinances.

This direct action confronts a massive crisis situation faced by numerous cities, towns and counties throughout the U.S., being added to daily by economics and lost jobs.The times are so similar to what people faced in the Great Depression, the Hooverville's and Grapes of Wrath, our own folk lore, our history as a people for everyone's acknowledgement and understanding, but not if being ignored. Your neighbors and /or someone's neighbors are losing their home every day...some having to find their way in the streets. Why this departure from our common sense and good will toward anyone's financial crisis leading to even greater deprivations and mental stress? 

Update: Local activist, Kimberly (Verbena) Starr was arrested last night at the encampment and as of 2:30 this afternoon was still in jail.


  1. Thanks for helping to get the word out. Hopefully we can get these people some help.

  2. It is 26 degrees out side my mobile home tonight. That speaks for itself.
    Capdiamount, thanks for posting this at your word blog and letting me link to it.
    People could die of exposure out there right now.I am only made more aware of their plight because my furnace died and I have aluminum wiring, so currently I am heating with my catalytic camp heater and a one burner propane camp stove. Got it up to a nice 42 degrees but it just dropped to 41.
    It is 26 degrees out side, they don't have enough tarps and sleeping bags and I'm complaining?
    I hope to pick up a wood stove for my mobile tomorrow. I'll be warm soon. What will become of these kids?

  3. Thing is people can die from 60 degree weather, as well as 26.

    Be glad you live up here. On wed, it was a no burn day in the Bay Area. Meaning no wood burning, unless it was your sole source of heat.

  4. Did the campers know the Rescue Mission has open beds so they can stay out of the cold?


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