Rantz: 18 shocking photos as Seattle’s homeless residents take Ballard
The Seattle City Council will debate legislation this week that would outlaw most sweeps of homeless encampments. But for Ballard, it’s too little, too late. It’s as if the dangerous legislation already exists.
The legislation — proposed by Socialist councilmembers Tammy Morales and Kshama Sawant and far left progressive Teresa Mosqueda — has been aggressively panned by the Mayor’s office. It’s so poorly written it would even stop private property owners from having encampments swept.
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“This bill is as poorly drafted and analyzed as I’ve ever seen and fails to recognize basic and legitimate operational, legal, and policy considerations, without any consultation with the impacted city departments,” Deputy Mayor Mike Fong said in a letter addressed to City Council.
But that’s not stopping the trio of extremist councilmembers.
Seattle homeless camps have engulfed Ballard
These councilmembers are on a mission to stop all sweeps.
After a recent sweep of a 45-plus tent encampment in the International District — the site of a rape, murder, shots fired, and dozens of fires — activists on and off the council were outraged. They’d prefer the encampment be untouched, leaving people to barely survive in dangerous conditions.
It’s a bit unfair to attack these three councilmembers alone. It’s true that the legislation would make the homeless situation much worse — it’s designed to do just that. But, to be clear, we’re close to a worst-case scenario already.
In Ballard, the homeless have absolutely taken over parts of the neighborhood. Trash, needles, and human waste are everywhere. Near-entire portions of blocks have been taken over, and this is after a recent sweep. The city has no plan, the district’s councilmember Dan Strauss has no vision, and the residents of the neighborhood no longer have a clean and safe community.
Need proof? See the above photos by resident (and KTTH employee) Rob Harwood on the morning of May 21, 2020.
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