Parents, students walk through former encampment area for national safety awareness event

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The Latest – Wednesday, Oct. 6

In midtown Sacramento Wednesday morning, parents, students and police officers walked in a group for several blocks as they accompanied kids to school. 

The walk took place on National Walk and Bike to School Day to stress the importance of students getting to school safely. The participants addressed pedestrian safety and driver awareness.

“We want kids to be able to walk safely to school,” local organizer Amy Gardner told FOX40. 

The parents and students also walked through the now-former encampment that was removed by Caltrans on Tuesday.

“In the last months, they haven’t been able to use that sidewalk. It was completely covered,” Gardner said. “It is very nice to have these streets how they were 16 to 18 months ago. I mean, this is how we expect our streets to be.”


Original story below

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — Caltrans is scheduled to remove a homeless encampment near Business 80 in midtown Sacramento Tuesday morning.

The encampment stretches a few blocks at the intersection of G and 29th streets just adjacent to Capital City Freeway, and roughly 35 people live in the area.

Caltrans and the California Highway Patrol will begin with plans to clear the encampment entirely starting around 9 a.m.

Representatives with Caltrans told FOX40 they launched the effort after many members of the community expressed concerns about children walking to nearby schools. Neighbors also said some of the people experiencing homelessness have vandalized cars and trespassed onto nearby private properties.

Opponents of the encampment’s removal said the government is forcing those experiencing homelessness to move elsewhere without getting the proper mental and physical health support that they need.

“Waste of money, waste of resources,” said Tim Brown with the Sacramento Services, Not Sweeps Coalition. “Not helping the problem, making it worse. Just cruel.”

One woman, who identified herself only as Nia, said that for her and others who live on the streets, Caltrans’ cleanup does more to hurt than help.

“I never thought I’d be homeless,” Nia explained. “We’re not all crazy or drug-addicted. Some of us are just on bad times.”

She said similar projects have forced her to leave encampments in the past, but all that did was force her to relocate to another encampment.

Brown said stories like Nia’s are why he came by Tuesday to urge Caltrans to stop their work until the people who live in the area receive the services they need.

Caltrans claimed they gave at least 48 hours’ notice to all the people who live in the area.

“We will certainly give the inhabitants time to get their belongings of value,” said Patrick Bishop with Caltrans. “Anything that remains we will then inspect to see if any value remains and store those valuables and then clean up the remainder, and we’ll be done with that today.”

The move comes as Caltrans has already cleaned other areas in the city.

They want to have the whole area cleaned by the end of the day Tuesday.

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