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City clears tents and Seattle Central fences-off plaza lawn where post-CHOP camp formed — UPDATE

The south lawn of Seattle Central is fenced off and cleared of tents after the city moved in Tuesday morning to clear the camp that formed in the wake of the July 1st raid and sweep of the CHOP occupied protest.

The college announced the clearance in an email to the campus. “After two weeks of working with homeless support services, speaking with organizers, and hearing from employees and neighbors, the college received assistance from the city of Seattle this morning to clear the illegal encampment at the South Plaza without incident,” SCC president Sheila Edwards Lange writes. The full email is below.

CHS is not aware of any arrests in the clearance.

UPDATE 5:40 PM: A city Human Services Department spokesperson tells CHS that the school was mistaken in reporting that the Navigation Team executed Tuesday morning’s clearance. “The operation today was SPD and not the Navigation Team,” the spokesperson said. “There may be some confusion around Navigation Team SPD officers being involved but they would be operating under their SPD chain of command and not in their roles as members of the Navigation Team.”

We reported last week on the school’s efforts to broker a peaceful end to the encampment that formed with a mix of unsheltered people and protesters gathering on the school plaza lawn. The situation comes nine years after Occupy Seattle tents filled the area for nearly two months before being forced out just before Christmas 2011.

In her latest update, below, Edwards Lange said her school partnered with Low Income Housing Institute to assist 20 campers, “identifying placements and providing transportation to housing.”

“The campers who remained on site after Monday night were offered alternative housing and support services by Navigation Team members,” Edwards Lange writes.

Dear Seattle Central Community,

I am writing to update you on the status of the encampment on the South Plaza lawn.

After two weeks of working with homeless support services, speaking with organizers, and hearing from employees and neighbors, the college received assistance from the city of Seattle this morning to clear the illegal encampment at the South Plaza without incident.

The college asked for the city’s help only after exhausting every other avenue to get the campers to voluntarily leave the site, including assistance with housing placements. We needed to take action because the encampment had become a safety and health hazard.

The college partnered with the Low Income Housing Institute to assist 20 of the people who were camping on the site, identifying placements and providing transportation to housing. The campers who remained on site after Monday night were offered alternative housing and support services by Navigation Team members.

The encampment was set up illegally after the clearing of the Capitol Hill Organized Protest on July 1, when some of the people camping at Cal Anderson Park moved their sites to the lawn at the edge of the campus.

The South Plaza lawn will be temporarily fenced off to the public while it is being cleaned up.

We thank our community, staff, and students for their patience through this difficult situation.

Sincerely,

Sheila Edwards Lange, PhD
President, Seattle Central College


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caphiller
caphiller
4 months ago

Finally! I can’t believe Seattle Central put up with the chaos and filth over there all these past weeks.

CHOP2.0 Neighbor
CHOP2.0 Neighbor
4 months ago

For those that think this was an ongoing protest I can tell you there were 3 people actively protesting. These 3 people constantly harassed people adjacent to them. One left a little over a week ago. The people that were left just were constantly on drugs, drinking, partying and causing a lot of trash piled up against the college. I saw a fire of the garbage on Friday night. This was an encampment or mostly people that refused services by the navigation team. Only Monday some saw it serious enough to take offer of shelter.

How do I know all this? I was harassed everyday while sheltering in place at my apartment. There was little peace with CHOP or CHOP 2.0. Yes, I lived directly across from CHOP and then after the shootings transferred apartments. Just in time to face CHOP 2.0.

A lot of people drove by and honked at the encampment. They were honking at people that were not protesting. Only one person was actively protesting. I call him man with green backpack. He seems the only one I saw as protesting daily. Everyday, as he stated. I hope he is still protesting somewhere. I would of loved to hear his story. I am immune compromised. So that isn’t going to happen. He has been out there everyday living with people that are partying it up during COVID. Only one suggestion: don’t target the people. Target the corporations not the people who may or may not work for them. You just don’t know everyone’s history by where they work or live. For example I have an invisible disability. By looking at me you would never know.

Whichever
Whichever
4 months ago

About time

Bob Knudson
Bob Knudson
4 months ago

We’re turning into a city of fenced-off public areas…..the East Precinct, numerous (formerly) homeless camps (mostly on WSDOT property), and now this.

Dan
Dan
4 months ago
Reply to  Bob Knudson

Good, camping on public land should be illegal and highly enforced. This is land we fund as tax payers. Enabling the sort of addiction, lifestyle, or mental illness that leads to folks living in these areas only seeks to prevent them from getting treated and is not a compassionate response.