portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article reporting portland metro

actions & protests | homelessness

Why Are We Protesting At City Hall?

We want everyone in Portland, the West Coast, and the greater regions of the U.S. to know why we're here, so that as communities we can affect change when it comes to issues of poverty and homelessness. Many have expressed the impossibility of our fight, however our collective creativity is only strengthened by the notion of such closed thinking. We also want to invite and challenge others who see the sickness of economic injustice in their own cities to get involved by marching, camping, and standing in solidarity with our houseless brothers and sisters by participating in similar actions that will force our country to acknowledge the state of emergency that we are in. We will succeed when we work together; we cannot do it any other way! The following is a leaflet we have created and distributed far and wide in the streets and squares of Portland, and now through the interweb. PASS IT ON!
Why Are We Protesting At City Hall?

Our civil rights are being violated in that we are asked to be on the move continuously, never able to stop and rest. This is cruel and unusual punishment for a crime not committed. Being houseless is not a crime, and Portland is our home. We are human and we are your neighbors. We are trying to live our diverse lives with dignity and respect. We have nowhere to go; some of us have been living under bridges and have been swept out, and that is why you see us here in front of City Hall; it is the only safe place to sleep in Portland. We are not allowed to camp within city limits and shelters are not an answer to our houselessness, only a band-aid. We are tired and weary; we are not looking for a handout; we are looking for creative solutions that involve our entire community, and we must challenge our leaders to consider outside-of-the-box-perspectives. This is not a homeless issue; this is a community issue.


What Do We Want?

Short-termó-the immediate repeal of the sit/lie & camping ordinances and the decriminalization of homelessness

REAL dialogue where we can share and listen to each others' creative ideas and solutions

Long-termó-affordable and safe housing in Downtown Portland.


Want To Support Us?

1. Housed and houseless UNITE! Many have already come to sleep with us on the sidewalks; but we need more allies to spend a few hours, a day, or a night or three in our shoes, hear our stories, and then spread the word far and wide.

2. Tell the Mayor's office, 503-823-3597 as well as your neighbors, co-workers, and friends that you want JUSTICE FOR ALL, and open participatory communication and action, not just forums for talking at one another!

3. Make Wednesday morning's city council meeting standing room only. On 14 May 2008 at 9:15 am fill the council chambers and STAND IN SOLIDARITY, as we collectively demand that OUR representatives uphold our rights of life, justice, and liberty.

4. Many have already contributed food, sleeping bags, tarps, blankets, and time. For such kindness and generosity we are thankful, although our needs continue to grow. If you are able to share any of these items with us, we would be very appreciative!

I made the call at 3:20 on Friday 09.May.2008 15:32

Ben Waiting

I just called this line
I got voice-mail
I left a "positive statement" hoping for a progressive humane resolution

I mentioned that I have a house to live in and I have a job ...but that I was very concerned and am in Solidarity with those that are homeless and those at the protest vigil

It was easy to do ...no stress..... I had plenty of time to speak my message..... I feel like I am trying to make change for the betterment

I left my name and phone number
I offered to help how ever I could
I offered My services and My opinion
I am glad I did
Thanks for posting the phone number !!

Get Active
Call Your Mayor
Solidarity
Respect & Solidarity
Respect & Solidarity

In the local news - Cops abuse homeless lady in Gresham - she wins $80,000.oo 09.May.2008 18:40

reposting

Today 5/9/08, at the end of a two-day trial in U.S. District Court, jurors sided with MacQuire and awarded her $80,000 in damages

That is -- $10,000 more than she sought.

MacQuire said she hoped to inspire others who think they've been wronged but are scared to come forward.

"I am one girl. I'm homeless. I don't have a job," said MacQuire, 24, represented by the Oregon Law Center. "And these are police officers."

One can search Oregon Live or goggle for the full report

~!~