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Sun Feb 23, 2014, 05:34 PM

 

A Florida City Made It Illegal for Homeless People to Cover Themselves With Blankets

Pensacola has gone all-in in the run for Most Horrible City on the Planet with its "camping ordinance."

What is that, you ask?

Why, it's a law that prevents homeless people from covering themselves up with a blanket, and yes, this is a real thing, and yes, OF COURSE this is happening in Florida.

So far, attempts to have the city repeal the ordinance have fallen on deaf ears.

Maybe they think if enough homeless people die from exposure, the homelessness problem in Pensacola will vanish? BRILLIANT!

However, a Change.org petition to have the ordinance repealed has been on the internet for a few weeks now and has already hit more than 10,000 signatures.

http://blogs.browardpalmbeach.com/pulp/2014/02/a_florida_city_made_it_illegal.php

6 replies, 2186 views

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Reply A Florida City Made It Illegal for Homeless People to Cover Themselves With Blankets (Original post)
El_Johns Feb 2014 OP
democratisphere Feb 2014 #1
Liberal Veteran Feb 2014 #2
pinboy3niner Feb 2014 #3
In_The_Wind Feb 2014 #4
El_Johns Feb 2014 #6
Shrike47 Feb 2014 #5

Response to El_Johns (Original post)

Sun Feb 23, 2014, 05:46 PM

1. This is a perfect example of legislators that are out of touch with reality.

Let's make sure homeless people can't cover themselves so they become sick to make their horrible situation even worse. I wish we had sane, unselfish, reasonable humanistic people governing at every level of government; the country would run much better.

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Response to El_Johns (Original post)

Sun Feb 23, 2014, 05:46 PM

2. Homed people should just randomly start covering themselves in a blanket.

At every opportunity to protest this law.

The judges will get tired of the case log piling up really fast.

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Response to El_Johns (Original post)

Sun Feb 23, 2014, 05:53 PM

3. Florida Town That Banned Blankets For The Homeless Reverses Course

By Alex Leichenger on February 14, 2014 at 2:02 pm

...

The Pensacola City Council voted unanimously on Thursday to upend what became known as the “blanket ban,” and pending a second vote later this month the ban will be repealed, the Pensacola News-Journal reports. The 2013 law made it illegal to sleep “out-of-doors…adjacent to or inside a tent or sleeping bag, or atop and/or covered by materials such as a bedroll, cardboard, newspapers, or inside some form of temporary shelter.” The initiative referred to homelessness as “camping,” a benign term that minimizes the plight of people lacking reliable access to food and shelter.

Yet after a torrent of critical press coverage and a Change.org petition, Pensacola Mayor Ashton Hayward reversed his previous support for the ordinance and urged the council to amend it “after reflecting and praying on this issue.” Hayward tweeted a picture of himself and his wife supporting a blanket drive for the homeless earlier in the day and posted a photo to Facebook announcing the Council’s vote. Pensacola City Councilwoman Sherri Myers, an original opponent of the ordinance, brought forward the proposal to amend it.

The Council did not overturn other restrictions on the homeless in Pensacola. Homeless people are still forbidden from washing or shaving in public restrooms and relieving themselves or requesting money in public, according to the News-Journal. While it left those restrictions in place, the Council voted to establish a task force to identify and address issues of homelessness in Pensacola. The city is the largest in Escambia County, where the Florida Council on Homelessness’ 2013 report found that 830 people are homeless, a jump of nearly 300 from 2012. Many of those people are chronically homeless, veterans, suffering from mental illness, or victims of domestic violence, according to a report by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The “blanket ban” is just one example of how cities nationwide are choosing to criminalize homelessness rather than grapple with the systemic issues abetting it. Another county in Florida spent over five million dollars to jail homeless people. Osceola County, which is near Orlando, devoted more economic resources to arrests for “quality-of-life-offenses” than it would have required to provide housing. Columbia, South Carolina has threatened to arrest homeless people for congregating in public and wants to charge high fees to charities that feed the homeless. St. Louis, Los Angeles, Raleigh, and Harrisburg have all considered or passed measures that make it harder to help the homeless. Pensacola Councilman Charles Bare assessed the nature of such initiatives by lambasting his own city’s criminalization of homelessness.

...


http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2014/02/14/3279841/pensacola-reverse-blanket-ban-homeless/#

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Response to pinboy3niner (Reply #3)

Sun Feb 23, 2014, 05:57 PM

4. Totally cold hearted! Sheesh! As a child I loved going to Pensacola.

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Response to pinboy3niner (Reply #3)

Sun Feb 23, 2014, 06:09 PM

6. thanks for the update.

 

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Response to El_Johns (Original post)

Sun Feb 23, 2014, 06:05 PM

5. After all, homelessness is a lifestyle choice and should be discouraged.

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