Sunday, April 17, 2016

Community Sleepout #40

The 40th community sleepout to protest laws that criminalize homelessness was held at Santa Cruz City Hall on April 12.

Individuals sleep on the sidewalk in front of Santa Cruz City Hall

Santa Cruz City Hall

Nearby at the public library, a person sleeps on the walkway using an "emergency" blanket

Monday, April 11, 2016

Community Sleepout #39

April 5 marked the 39th community sleepout organized at Santa Cruz City Hall to oppose local laws that criminalize homelessness.

Since July 4, individuals have been protesting laws they feel are discriminatory by breaking them. The primary law they oppose is the camping ban, which prohibits sleeping in public between the hours of 11 pm and 8:30 am within the City of Santa Cruz.

As a group, their goal is to stay through the night and sleep at City Hall. Some of the participants have homes of their own and some do not. Many call themselves "Freedom Sleepers."

The Tuesday night sleepouts have become a destination point for many people on the street. Some return each week to sleep with a group. Others pass by quickly to grab a bite to eat. Many hope to find a blanket or some form of bedding. Supplies are often limited, however, and some people wind up sleeping directly on the sidewalk with nothing.

Santa Cruz City Hall

Sleeping on the sidewalk with only one blanket

Two people sleep together on the sidewalk without any bedding

A plate of PBJ sandwiches was left to share, sleepers can be seen in the background