"Homeless" Tent Encampment in Olympia Feb 1

“Homeless” Tent Encampment in Olympia Feb 1

http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2007/01/352625.shtml

On February 1, the “Poor” Peoples Union of Olympia, WA will set up a “homeless” tent encampment in response to a new city ordinance which goes into effect on February 1, making it virtually illegal to be on the street (“homeless”) in Olympia. The exact location will not be revealed until the last minute, however it will be a highly visible protest. The eventual goals are to find a permanant location where the people can have a long term, autonomously run encampment and locations where people can be housed in autonomous, democraticly run communities.

The Poor People’s Union, since its inception, has sought to overturn the ordinances targeted at the “homeless”. Our intitial idea was to have a referendum on the ordinance and gather enough signatures for it. Over the past weeks, however, it has become clear that the PPU will not be able to expediently stop the ordinances from going into effect and has decided to put a referendum off for the time being.

Instead, the PPU is channeling all of its energy into setting up a tent
encampment in order to not only show the Olympia community what is going on but to occupy a piece of land in order to satisfy a need that those who passed these laws take for granted: housing. The people who passed and support this ordinance can hear about the “homeless problem” on TV, can complain about the “danger” of Downtown Olympia, and can be so arrogant and disrespectful as to pass laws that will effect other living human beings, but they will not get away with this without it coming back to emberass them.

The encampent will consist of human beings helping other human beings to live more comfortably than they have been. It will be run by those who have set it up. Decisions will be made by those who have a large stake in insuring the continuance of the encampment. Governments and laws try and convince us that we cannot do the simplest things, such as use vacant “city” land to house people with no roof over their heads. The encampment is one of those simple things and we do not require government approval to take matters out of their inept hands and put them into our own. They will probably attempt to crush us with the help of the police but we will not stop what we are doing. If the police do ANYTHING against us (the “homeless”, the poor) it will only inflame the situation and provide more proof that they serve as nothing more than lackeys of those with exceedingly large roofs over their heads. For why would another human being want to deny another a comfortable place to live? Some will say law and some will say order, but no word or words will justify what is being done to the “homeless” in this town.

PPU (Poor Peoples Union) is an organization of Street People (“Homeless”) and their friends. PPU is a autonomous, democratic organization where the unhoused have the final say on matters that effect them directly.

WE NEED:

CAMPING EQUIPMENT.
Tents, Tarps, foldable chairs, Propane stoves, sleeping bags, blankets, warm coats, boots and rain gear, buckets, sawdust. Remember, these are people who have nothing.

LEGAL OBSERVERS
Legal trainings for the people would also be desirable.

MEDICS
Needed for the standard street medic pepper spray, blunt trauma etc, but also for the needs of a varied group with different health problems.

COUNSELORS
People with some ability helping people work through trauma.

PERSONAL FACILITIES
Portable solar showers and portable toilet facilities would be good.

SOLIDARITY
We need this to be a varied group. The presence of supporters from the
activist community being in solidarity with the people will go a long way
toward making this a succesful effort.

Come and support the PPU Downtown on February 1st, the day that both the
encampment and the ordinance begin.

Send Camping and other Stuff to

Poor Peoples Union
C/O Bread and Roses
1009 4th Ave Olympia, WA 98506

Leave message for PPU at Bread and Roses
(360)754-4588

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