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Housing Not Jails

This petition had 323 supporters

Whoever wins the upcoming New Haven mayoral election must respond publicly to these DEMANDS by December 1st, 2017.

I. Decriminalize homelessness—immediately.

  1. Place a moratorium on the enforcement of all ordinances that criminalize people because of their homeless status, including laws that prohibit loitering, panhandling, sleeping in public spaces, and erecting shelter.
  2. Cancel all court debt, fines, fees, and court-ordered community service labor for every homeless individual living in New Haven.
  3. Institute mandatory training for all NHPD officers on the Homeless Person’s Bill of Rights. Police must respect homeless people’s right to congregate, associate, and travel in public spaces.
  4. Police officers must stop stealing and destroying property belonging to homeless people. 
  5. The city must stop destroying homeless encampment

II.  Provide quality housing and social services for every homeless person living in New Haven by January 1st, 2018.

  1. The city of New Haven must create a council of homeless and formerly homeless people to oversee the implementation of housing and service programs.
  2. The unsanitary, over-crowded Grand Avenue shelter should be destroyed and replaced with humane shelters that safely accommodate couples, families, women, and gender non-conforming and transgender people.
  3. The city must convert enough vacant buildings into livable homes in order to house every chronically homeless individual in the city. This conversion process must be overseen by the aforementioned council.
  4. The city must increase the provision of high-quality harm reduction services including mental health and employment counseling for all homeless people, overseen by the aforementioned council.

III. Yale University, the largest property owner in New Haven with a $25.4 billion endowment, must begin paying taxes.

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