DENVER (CBS4)– Crews with the City of Denver escorted the homeless campers off the streets in the Capitol Hill neighborhood on Tuesday. The large encampment was located near 13th and 14th along Logan Street.
After such sites outside the state Capitol and Morey Middle School have been dismantled over the past few months, a large unauthorized campsite emerged in Capitol Hill a few blocks away.
A fleet of garbage trucks, loaders, and other vehicles moved in to create what the city says was a dangerous and unsanitary situation. The residents call it a sweep while the city calls it a cleanup. Neighbors say the sidewalks and open spaces have been taken over by the homeless.
“Messing with the homeless is like backing us into a corner and saying, like, what do we do?” asked Sephronia Elias who is experiencing homelessness.
Until Tuesday, Logan Street between 13th and 14th was wall-to-wall tents. Neighbors complained to CBS4, some not wanting to show their faces.
“I can’t walk my dogs, my girlfriend can’t go to her car, she doesn’t feel safe. They go through our trash,” said one resident.
Another neighbor said, “Overall it’s sticky situation. I wish it could be handled some other way instead of shuffling them around and all about.”
Over the weekend a possible solution was put on display. A model camp for the unhoused, complete with shower facilities, restrooms and trash pickup showed off by the Colorado Village Collaborative. Now the question is where to put it.
After being given advance notice, the city cleared out the remaining tents while some complained their personal items were swept away. Now, part one has been completed as those who lived here look for a new place to go.
Therese Howard of Homeless Outloud has seen this unfold many times, “A block over here a block right down there. A lot of people moved to the next block which will be swept tomorrow.”
For Sephronia and her dog Mutton share this is all getting old. She says people in cars passing by often yell insults.
“I’m a person too, I have feelings too, they get hurt all the time,” said Sephronia.