The Bellevue City Council voted unanimously Nov. 20 to approve three new ordinances that will criminalize homeless people attempting to survive outside.
As of Dec. 26, cars parked in public places will have to move to a new block every 24 hours. The improper disposal of wastewater, currently a civil offense, will be upgraded to a criminal offense. Finally, a ban on camping in parks will be extended to cover all city-owned property and public easements.
The stated reason: homelessness.
“The actions come in response to several ongoing concerns voiced by councilmembers and community members related to homelessness,” reads a city post about the new ordinances. “These new tools seek to balance the use of infrastructure and neighborhood quality with the city’s overarching compassionate and regionally coordinated strategy on homelessness.”
Bellevue has also recently prohibited safe-consumption sites, where people can use drugs under medical supervision and be connected to services.
Ashley Archibald is a Staff Reporter covering local government, policy and equity. Have a story idea? She can be can reached at ashleya (at) realchangenews (dot) org. Twitter @AshleyA_RC
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Wait, there's more. Check out the full November 29 issue.