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Old 07-07-2007, 10:34 AM
1,008 posts, read 3,606,102 times
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Since I'm considering relocating to Portland, I've been doing extensive research in to the culture, economy and political climate associated with this city. So far, Portland appears to be the best city for what I'm looking for in the "U.S." Though it's a far cry from a "socialist" society it's still far better than the majority of U.S. cities, if you're seeking a strong left wing atmosphere, that is. I was reading about "Dignity Village" in Portland and was wondering if any locals can shed some light on this place, the people and the cities reaction to it? Thank you.
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Old 07-09-2007, 04:17 PM
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Dignity Village doesn't get a lot of press these days so most Portlanders are probably in the "outta sight - outta mind" category. Dignity Village started as a group of homeless people who set up make-shift housing (tents) on public property. The property was close to downtown, yet certainly not ideal. It suffered from weather and sanitary issues. The idea was to build a community to help protect each other from......well....each other......and drugs/alcohol issues. From what I know, one was required to affirm they would not use drugs, be violent (no weapons), nor steal or they would be kicked out.

They were living on public property w/o city approval and were eventually relocated to a more suitable (less visible) property. They have since built proper bathroom facilities, common areas (kitchen, etc) and other green types of housing.......all from donated funds. It is still far from ideal but it does provide a good platform for folks to make the transition from the streets to permanent housing.
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Old 11-28-2007, 07:36 PM
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Default A Local's Response


I am a local who knows only limited things about the village, but I know a little more about the responses to the village. Of course there are a lot of people in favor of it - as it is, but they dont know how to expand it for other homeless people. In other words, it has about 60 people living there, and there is an estimated 2000 that sleep outside any given night.
The city government is sort of at a place where they dont know what to expect if they authorize more of these villages. As it is now, because of how much trouble and controversy the village caused for the city back when it was founded, the city basically has decided there wont be any more of them. It goes much deeper than that, but there are so many entanglements about such things as fire code safety, personal liability for risk of injury (on this public property) as well as every other kind of standardized regulations for organized multiresidential establishments.
So, I have been homeless more than one time in Portland, and I have been familiar with homelessness for about five years now in this city. The homeless people I have met, resent the village and everything about it.
Mainly because "everyone" knows that it cannot be duplicated, or made bigger, or anything else, except to be eventually choked out by stiffer regulations from the mayor's office. If it is not for that, it would be from several "sensitive" citizens of the same neighborhoods that simply do NOT want the homeless people nearby. The village cannot assist anyone not affiliated.

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Old 11-29-2007, 04:10 PM
Location: home...finally, home .
8,129 posts, read 17,579,493 times
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Sounds like The Diggers of San Francisco in 1967 . Yes, I am that old.
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