Homeless, Advocates Seek Replacement Location for Recently Closed Stockton Boulevard Encampment

SOUTH SACRAMENTO -- Homeless residents of the recently closed encampment on Stockton Boulevard joined community supporters to protest the closing of the camp two weeks ago.

They didn't leave quietly when Sacramento County Sheriff's deputies cleared 150 homeless people from the site.

Officers said it was unsanitary and dangerous for inhabitants who were victims of violent crimes.

Some of those who lived there disagreed.

"It was safe. We could pitch a tent, not be cold, get out of the weather and go to sleep," Billy Marshal Murphy said.

They said volunteers filled dumpsters with trash, but they were provided late as an afterthought.

While the homeless encampment on Stockton Boulevard is gone, the people who lived there are not.

They can be seen tucked against properties and empty lots that line Little Saigon, one of the city's busiest commercial corridors.

That has led to complaints, including from families who visit grave sites at the Sacramento Memorial Lawn a few blocks away.

The homeless have used it as a shortcut to get to new campsites.

"Resources are taken away when we're constantly calling police and law enforcement, so that's why we want to get permanent housing and shelter," Faye Wilson Kennedy, Poor People's Campaign, said.

That's what the city is trying to do with a homeless transition program that has yet to be fully implemented but many are looking for a simpler solution.

"We want a new place where we can go. Where we can lay our heads down where we're not bugged. We need a permanent place without being harassed, a camping ground for the homeless," Dante Williams said.

 

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