11-20-2017  3:19 am      •     
MLK Breakfast
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NEWS BRIEFS

SEI, Sunshine Division Offer Thanksgiving Meals to Families in Need

Turkeys are being provided to fill 200 Thanksgiving food boxes for SEI families ...

NAACP Portland Monthly Meeting Nov. 18

Monthly general membership meeting takes place on Saturday, 12 - 2 p.m. ...

Multnomah County Animal Services Waives Adoption Fees Nov. 17

Special runs from 12 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday ...

Fitzpatrick Presents 'Pathway 1000' Plan Before City Council

Plan would restore involuntary displacement by building 80 homes per year ...

Sisters Network to Hold Monthly Meeting Nov. 11

Meeting to take place Saturday morning at June Key Delta Center ...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

OPINION

Local Author Visits North Portland Library

Renee Watson teaches students and educators about the power of writing ...

Is the FBI’s New Focus on “Black Identity Extremists” the New COINTELPRO?

Rep. Cedric L. Richmond (D-La.) talks about the FBI’s misguided report on “Black Identity Extremism” and negative Facebook ads. ...

ACA Enrollment Surging, Even Though It Ends Dec. 15

NNPA contributing writer Cash Michaels writes about enrollment efforts ...

Blacks Often Pay Higher Fees for Car Purchases than Whites

Charlene Crowell explains why Black consumers often pay higher fees than White consumers, because of “add-on” products. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

ENTERTAINMENT

By The Skanner News

Tuesday afternoon Mayor Charlie Hales’ office announced an update to the Homelessness State of Emergency it declared six months ago – which will roll back some aspects of the city’s response to homelessness and continue others.

“The State of Emergency means three things: first, rapid action; second, deliberate experimentation; and third, real money,” Hales’ statement said. “We quickly launched several pilot programs in response to livability issues associated with the homeless crisis. They were deliberate experiments to determine how we should allocate resources.”

Notably, the city will discontinue its practice of allowing overnight houseless people to sleep outside without interference from law enforcement.

The statement from the mayor’s office said the camping guidelines released six months ago created confusion for residents and left nobody – including law enforcement, homeless people and housed residents of neighborhoods near camps – satisfied. Some residents, the statement argued, believed the guidelines made unpermitted camping (which is a violation of a city ordinance) legal. Homeless camps will be swept and campers will be given 72-hour notice to leave – but will still be able to store their belongings in locking storage container provided by the city.

“The City will continue to work with social service providers and Police Bureau to communicate to homeless people the situations that will be prioritized for enforcement. Police will continue to use compassion in enforcement, recognizing that the city doesn’t have enough shelter beds for everyone, and that some people have to sleep outside.

The city also announced it would attempt to create nonprofit-managed outdoor shelters – with basic services provided by the city, and social services provided by nonprofit partners – similar to self-governed communities like Hazelnut Grove, Dignity Village and Right 2 Dream 2.

The following aspects of the city’s homeless response remain unchanged:

  • Sanitation: The city will continue to provide and service dumpsters and portable toilets at several locations in the city, including areas with large concentrations of homeless campers.
  • Storage: Six months ago the city provided day storage lockers at two locations for unhoused people to have a place to safely store their belongings. The city will expand the number of locked storage containers it offers to people who otherwise do not have a place to store their things.
  • The city will increase funding for “high-intensity street engagement” – programs to help people living on the street transition to permanent homes.
  • The city attempted six months ago to streamline points of contact for homeless people seeking services, or for people reporting livability issues, and will continue that project. Those reporting livability issues can use an online form (https://www.portlandoregon.gov/index.cfm?login=1&show_message=1&c=69333&CFID=67942208&CFTOKEN=9fd27dba3043a1f9-356C2C9C-E223-4DDC-2062C7DD7E14601B), a cell phone application or send an email (reportpdx@portlandoregon.gov) or via phone call (503-823-4000).

The city’s most recent homeless count, conducted in 2015, estimated there are about 3,800 people on the streets, in shelter and in temporary housing and about 12,000 people “doubled up” (for example, sleeping in common areas of friends’ or relatives’ homes) or living in hotels. The 2015 count found that while the overall number of homeless people had not changed much from the year before, the number of African Americans living on the streets in the Portland are

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