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Santa Rosa Presses On With Plan To Remove Homeless Encampments

SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX) – Like so many Bay Area cities, Santa Santa Rosa is grappling with more and more people living on the streets.

The city has embarked on a plan to clear out its homeless encampments. Several have already been moved, sparking protests from homeless advocates and a lawsuit over the closure of Camp Michela.

Now, but there two more encampments are slated for closure in July.

On Monday evening, Santa Rosa city officials will host a meeting for the public to learn about plans to deal with homeless encampments at the Highway 101 overpass at 6th Street, and at the Prince Memorial Greenway, at Olive Park.

The event will be held at the Santa Rosa City Council Chambers at 100 Santa Rosa Avenue.

According to a public notice, the city plans to relocate the homeless people to either the Samuel L. Jones Homeless Shelter through the "Coordinated Entry program, to "family and other support networks", or to "permanent or temporary housing."

The effort will include cleanup of the areas and "management of the area following relocation of individuals and resolution of the encampment to discourage reoccupation."

There are about 3000 homeless people in Sonoma County, and about 1800 of them live in Santa Rosa, according to city an county data. Recent numbers released in 2018 show Sonoma County has 2474 beds for homeless people, which includes housing and shelters.

Jimmy, who has been homeless in Santa Rosa for 12 years, was skeptical about the city's ability to provide housing.

"I know what they got," he told KPIX. "They ain't got enough."

And while the city seems committed to breaking up the camps wherever they form, he said homeless people will always find each other and stick together.

"You gotta survive," said Jimmy. "You gotta sleep with 2 or 4 or 6 different people which you can trust, just to make sure that everybody's stuff's gonna be okay in the morning. and it's kinda scary."

KPIX tried to contact Santa Rosa city and county officials for comment on this story, but so far, no one would comment.

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