Fight for Those Who Cannot Fight for Themselves
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As a San Diego institution for 47 years and the single biggest Convention and economic "happening" each year here, Comic-Con International has the power to make a common sense HUMANITARIAN EMERGENCY RESPONSE to San Diego's Homelessness Disaster happen, until permanent housing is found and developed.
A common thread in the immense popularity of comics, science fiction, and fantasy in all its glorious forms, as celebrated by Comic-Con is defending the defenseless, as so aptly expressed by Wonder Woman in the new Wonder Woman movie opening on June 2nd:
"I will fight for those who cannot fight for themselves".
Comic-Con International: San Diego, please embody the spirit you have celebrated here in San Diego every year since 1970 and call upon San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer and the San Diego City Council, led by President Myrtle Cole, to immediately Implement the City's Qualcomm Stadium Emergency Shelter Plan for the thousands of people made homeless by the loss of 10k units of low-income housing and 68% increase in median rent since 2010.
Thousands of lives depend on you so doing. Please see more information following.
San Diego County's Regional Task Force on Homelessness just reported that the number of tents on the streets in the City of San Diego DOUBLED from 2016 to 2017, and the number of homeless people in downtown San Diego increased 27%.
In other words, San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer's campaign to cleanse homeless people from the streets of San Diego has only driven people further into poverty. And his continued failure to respond to our Housing Disaster (10k units of affordable housing eliminated since 2010) has made it twice as bad.
With such unquestionable proof that weekly sweeps, removing trash receptacles and portable toilets and installing human-deterrent landscaping, such as beds of sharp rocks and prickly plants, is counter-productive, it is long past time for our Mayor and City Council to turn to PRODUCTIVE use of taxpayer funds to respond to this Humanitarian Disaster.
NEXT UP: Give people made homeless by the past 7 years' replacement of 10,000 units of low-income housing by market-rate housing, vacation rentals, hotels, offices and retail, Safe Spaces with sanitation facilities and access to services.
Now that the Chargers have moved to L.A. -- make the GARGANTUAN parking lot at City-owned Qualcomm Football Stadium into a network of SafePark (people sleeping in their vehicles), Tiny Shelter/SafeCamp Villages with porta-potties, mobile showers, camp kitchens. as well as caseworkers to support people getting the services and help they need. The adjacent Qualcomm Trolley Station makes using public transit easy, so give SafePark-Camp residents free Trolley/Bus passes to help them get to job interviews/jobs, medical appointments, and other places they need to visit in order to make progress out of homelessness.
We have a blueprint from Seattle, where they have been doing this since 2015: http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/39037-tiny-houses-are-a-big-help-for-homeless-people-in-seattle
Qualcomm Stadium is the City's designated Emergency Shelter for mass disasters, and it was used to shelter over 10,000 homeless victims of the 2007 wildfires ... very relevant to those made homeless by the destruction of 10,000 units of affordable housing in the past 6 years:
"The Wildfires of 2007 affected nearly everyone in San Diego County in some way. Qualcomm stadium was opened by the City of San Diego and took in thousands of people affected by the firestorm, either directly or indirectly. No person was denied access or services and few questions were asked of the people coming to seek shelter.
"The safety and security of the people who seek the City’s protection is our Number One priority. This is for all people seeking protection from the firestorm, irrespective of unknown or questionable residential, immigration or other status. Everyone had the opportunity to be safe." (https://www.sandiego.gov/sites/default/files/legacy/fire/pdf/witch_aar.pdf -- p.27)
We have a huge military presence here, which can help to mobilize this, as they do in responding to other disasters leaving 1000s of people homeless. We have the Red Cross and International Relief Team among others here, experienced in the same. SDSU is just down the Trolley line, with USD not far in the other direction. There are lots of students there who could be provided with great learning opportunities relative to majors like Social Work, Nursing, Public Health, Psychology...
Mayor Faulconer can do this more quickly, cost-effectively and SAFELY than large, institutional Shelters by leveraging programs already tried and proven to work:
Work with nonprofits like Dreams for Change to sanction and support SafePark lots for people to sleep in their vehicles, use portable hygiene facilities and a camp kitchen, and work with case managers to get the help they need to get into safe, permanent housing. http://www.dreamsforchange.org/the-safe-parking-program/
Work with nonprofits like Amikas to sanction and support Tiny Shelter Villages in vacant lots and vacant parking areas (next to empty buildings) for people to sleep and store their belongings safely behind a locked door. And use portable hygiene facilities and a camp kitchen, and work with case managers to get the help they need to get into safe, permanent housing. http://www.amikas.org/tiny-shelters
The Tiny Village concept could work for SafeCamps with tents in fenced areas, too. Both are being done successfully in Seattle -- with 3 more camps to be added this year.
Today: Women Occupy San Diego is counting on you
Women Occupy San Diego needs your help with “Comic-Con International: San Diego -- As a San Diego institution for 47 years and the single biggest Convention and economic "happening" each year here, Comic-Con International has the power to make this comFight for Those Who Cannot Fight for Themselves”. Join Women Occupy San Diego and 70 supporters today.