Copwatch - a project of Peace and Justice Works


Site Navigation

About us
People's Police Report
Shootings & deaths
Cool links
Other Information
Contact info


City of Portland Destroys Village of Hope

While there are claims that Portland is a progressive and compassionate city, the ongoing mistreatment of those without homes exposes the dark truth. In early 2018, some houseless people found an area near the airport they believed would make an acceptable camp for them. In late January, they cleaned up the area and worked on making the foot paths more usable. They brought in cement blocks and wooden planks, placing tents on top of them. They added compost toilets and larger tents for kitchen and storage areas. When it was completed in late January it was appropriately named the Village of Hope. Within days, Park Rangers tramped into the area and began giving out warning notices and exclusion orders. On February 2, Portland Police stormed into the area and began tearing down the camp and arranging the exodus of those who had been living there. Observers from the National Lawyers Guild were also there, but the police prevented them from going into the camp. A March 21 segment on KOIN TV revealed the Portland Police now have ATVs which enable them to swoop into camps in a faster and more efficient way so they can sweep human beings, tear down what has been erected and confiscate personal belongings.

In the last edition of the People's Police Report (#73), we wrote about Mayor Ted Wheeler caving in to the forces of the Portland Business Alliance and Tim Boyle, CEO of Columbia Sportswear, who was threatening to leave downtown Portland due to the presence of those who are houseless. This prompted a sit-in in front of Boyle's store. Despite his threats, the store in question remains in downtown Portland partly because Wheeler stepped up enforcement. The Portland Mercury revealed that the Portland Business Alliance was in direct contact with the Mayor's staff via text message to expand the number of downtown blocks made off limits to houseless folks under the Sit/Lie ordinance (February 21).

Then there are the City's increasing legal efforts. In August, with little or no publicity, the City established an ordinance defining Pedestrian Plazas around downtown Portland, which contain all of the onerous prohibitions of Sit/Lie but go beyond sidewalks into areas such as Ankeny Alley (near Voodoo Donuts). The City also lobbied hard and won unanimous votes in the State Legislature for HB 4054, which (a) allowed local police to sweep houseless people off state owned land, and (b) reduced state enforcement of cleanup warnings from 10 days to two days. City Council's letter to the Legislature stated the bill will address "the causes and symptoms of homelessness with compassion." Perhaps it is time to get the City a new dictionary.

  People's Police Report

May, 2018
Also in PPR #74

PPB Kills Man in Homeless Center
  State Board Rarely Strips Certifications
  PCW: 59 OR Shootings 2016-Apr 2018
PPB Keeps Secret "Gang List"
Protestors Sue City Through ACLU
Review Committee Hears 2 Cases
Chief Outlaw Makes the Rounds
Chief, New Weapon at Training Council
Hearing Held on DOJ Agreement
Don't Arm School Police/Teachers
City of Portland Destroys Village of Hope
Terror Task Force Not in Sanctuary Plan
New Timeline on PPB Policy Reviews
Rapping Back #74

Portland Copwatch
PO Box 42456
Portland, OR 97242
(503) 236-3065/ Incident Report Line (503) 321-5120
e-mail: copwatch@portlandcopwatch.org

Portland Copwatch is a grassroots, volunteer organization promoting police accountability through citizen action.

People's Police Report #74 Table of Contents
Back to Portland Copwatch home page
Peace and Justice Works home page
Back to top