ASHLAND, Ore. -- Protestors in Ashland gathered Tuesday night to fight against the criminalization of homelessness.
Police Chief in Ashland Tighe O'Meara said people do not get arrested for their living situation but can receive a citation that may be turned over to collections if ignored.
The OHRA warming shelter is currently at capacity with 40 people in its low-barrier housing facility. Protestors demand that emergency shelters be arranged for when temperatures drop below freezing.
The demands of protestors are as follows:
- Opens a site for Transitional Housing Accommodations as allowed under ORS 446.265.
- Invests in 60 yurts/cabins/tiny homes to address the immediate crisis of housing.
- Repeals the unjust “Expulsion Zone”, AMC 10.120.
- Follows Portland's lead by passing an income tax on income earners greater than $110,000 to fund homeless services.
- Enacts a luxury tax on homes over 2,500 square feet to fund homeless services.
- Provides emergency shelter accommodations when the temperature drops below 40 degrees, raising the threshold from the current inhuman 20 degrees.
- Funds homeless services through cutting two law enforcement officers.
O'Meara said he has no problem in using community resources to help those who are homeless but said the Ashland Police Department is already understaffed.