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Homeless Village Advocates Hold Workshop

EUGENE, Ore. — Building support for a new permanent home for the homeless was the focus of a workshop Tuesday night.

Opportunity Village recruited an architect to help further their vision of a new home. Mark Lakeman was pivotal in establishing Dignity Village in Portland.

It’s similar to what those connected with Opportunity Village have proposed.

People trying to make this a reality say it would provide a safe area for the homeless with zero tolerance for drugs, alcohol or violence. They say it would be a perfect home for a new breed of homeless called economic refugees.

“Economic refugees have been working all their life, the last 20 years, and through no wrongdoing, they’ve lost their job, and that’s why they don’t have a home,” said Jean Stacey of Opportunity Village.

There are no confirmed locations for Opportunity Village. However, Eugene City Council has already discussed opportunities and will revisit the village when it returns from summer break.

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  1. john thompson says:

    Its amazing the glacial speed the council is moving on this issue. maybe if they were homeless they might step it up a bit.

  2. Not on 13th Ave... says:

    I attended Lakeman’s presentation. Basically, he advocated a socialist culture similar to the way the American Indians and the Pilgrim explorers lived. Its great, if you’re in survival mode and don’t have an income. However, the Opportunity Village Eugene group seems to demand that the “village” or camp be located in a West Eugene residential neighborhood, on West 13th.

    The OVE seems to arrogantly know whats best for the community, and insists that an imposed “interaction with the homeless people will provide direct opportunities to spiritual growth.” The group seems to ignore any negative impacts to nearby property owners; so much for initiating interaction.

    I support their need for this survival village, but I oppose locating such a camp in a residential neighborhood, who’s residents would rather be free from the OVE influence. Why should a property owners be forced to risk their property investment by the proximity of a homeless camp, at their expense. Basically, any devaluation in their property value is an indirect subsidy. The camp should NOT be located in a residential neighborhood, plain and simple.

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