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Homeless advocates protest outside Eugene city manager's home

Stop the Death on the Streets organized Monday night's demonstration.

Posted: Nov 24, 2020 1:34 AM
Updated: Nov 24, 2020 9:39 AM

EUGENE, Ore. -- A protest was held outside of Eugene City Manager Sara Medary's house Monday night, demanding she and the city do more about supporting the homeless population.

About two dozen cars caravanned through South Eugene to Medary's house. Drivers honked their horns and passengers yelled chants along the way.

Stop the Death on the Streets organized Monday night's demonstration. They're an advocacy group that wants local leaders to do more to help the homeless population.

Erin is a member of the group. She said after a year of going to public meetings, writing letters, and other protests, it was time to put more pressure on the city manager.

"We’ve seen small changes," Erin said. "But considering the crisis we are facing in terms of housing the people of the dangerous conditions are living in and with death on the streets, the changes have been minimal."

The protest did get the neighbors' attention. Grace lives near Medary's house and she said she's all for protesting, but coming to a neighborhood late at night is not appropriate.

“I think there is an appropriate time and place for people to protest and that needs to occur outside of the city manager’s office," Grace said. "It's very disruptive and I think that approach undermines the message."

The group left a coffin in front of the city manager's house. On it was a list of six demands:

  1. Decriminalize homelessness and stop the sweeps
  2. Prioritize resources for health and safety
  3. Create emergency shelter options immediately
  4. Sanctioned camping
  5. Eviction moratorium through the duration of the pandemic
  6. Create transitional and permanent housing immediately

According to the group, 26 people in the unhoused community have died in the streets this year. That number was compiled from data collected from multiple social services.

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