Publicola: Seattle City Council rejects Nickelsville legislation

In a blow to efforts to better provide resources for the city’s homeless population, the City Council Monday rejected its committee’s legislation to expand areas of the city where homeless encampments are allowed. Here’s an update on the vote from Publicola:

By a narrow vote, the city council rejected legislation today that would have expanded the parts of the city in which homeless encampments like Tent City and Nickelsville (currently permitted only on land owned by religious institutions or the city) are allowed.

The city has told Nickelsville residents that they have to leave their current encampment, which has been located illegally on city-owned land for the past two years, in September.

Council members who supported the legislation, including its sponsors Nick Licata and Mike O’Brien, said that although tent encampments aren’t a perfect solution, they’re better than leaving people to simply sleep on the street.

While the issue goes well beyond crime and safety, in a CHS survey, readers said increased patrols and better homeless programs were the most important solutions to making Cal Anderson safer.

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6 thoughts on “Publicola: Seattle City Council rejects Nickelsville legislation

  1. This repeated idea that the homeless are coming from out of town because we are generous with shelters and services is the same kind of idiotic mentality that blamed the anarchists for coming up from Eugene and ruining what would have been an otherwise peaceful WTO protest back in 1999. It says the people of Seattle would be living in utopia if it wasn’t for those damned outsiders coming in and ruining it for everybody else. In other words, this city still has not learned to take responsibility for it’s problems.

    I’ve lived in this city for twenty years and I’ve watched many of Seattle’s homeless grow old alongside myself, though the wear of a life lived on the streets has taken a much greater toll on them. Yes, there are new (many younger) folks coming in every year, especially when the weather grows warmer, but a good deal of them will be gone when the weather turns again. But those same faces I see year after year are still here, living on the street and struggling with disability, dependency, mental illness, etc.

    Those city council members who failed to support this new legislation are pathetic. Why don’t you have the courage to say that you are afraid of the homeless, afraid of the support you’ll lose from the businesses that want the homeless banned from the streets, afraid of what will happen if you challenge the status quo and seek real solutions (even if only temporary — even if only a tent for now) instead of acting like it’s not even our problem.

    Cowards. How do you sleep?

    • Of course the homeless are our problem, whether they come from elsewhere or not. I think the City Council is simply asserting that it’s better to get them into long-term, stable housing than to enable them to live in substandard tent encampments. Regarding Nickelsville, the Council has appropriated a lot of money (I believe the figure is $500,000) to facilitate the residents’ move to better housing arrangements.

      • Nickelsville has about a hundred people. There are thousands of people living on the streets. And the problem isn’t just a roof over someone’s head, it’s the deep-rooted problems in our society that lead to homelessness in the first place.

        The money provided to house the folks in Nickelsville will be money well-spent by the city to appease the neighbors who wanted the homeless out of there and also to give the city something to pat itself on the back for in the press for the next five or ten years.

        The problem of homelessness in this city is not even being nicked. In fact, we’re talking steps backward.

  2. Ill sleep just fine when I can walk into QFC without hearing, smelling, and listening to some prick call me an asshole for not handing him money so he can go get high. Ill sleep a very soundly.

    • As always, like most people, you are ignoring a crisis-level situation by associating all homeless people with a bad experience you have had. It’s the same when you blame all people of one race for the act of one person of that race. It’s a small mind that thinks this way. And if you think that the people who smell bad and call you names are going to go away, you are dead wrong. It’s only going to get worse because of this decision.

  3. Pingback: Association Against Homelessness in America | Seattle City Council rejects Nickelsville legislation