Homeless community protests Berkeley homeless services system

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Emilia Bulfone/Staff

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A tent city sits in the median at the intersection of Adeline and Ward streets in Berkeley, as members of the homeless community continue to protest the Hub — the city’s homeless services system for its alleged inefficiency in providing homeless Berkeley citizens with housing and other services.

The demonstration began last week when protesters set up tents outside the Hub’s office, according to mayoral candidate and protester Guy “Mike” Lee. After police cleared out the encampment last Friday, the protesters moved their tents to the median where they have remained since Monday.

The Hub was established in January of this year to replace the city’s prior system of providing homeless services, which involved funding a variety of different non-profit agencies, according to city spokesperson Matthai Chakko. Chakko stated that the city switched to the new system because the former system had been confusing for some people who needed services and often resulted in people with the most need going without assistance.

The Hub is intended for those members of the homeless community who are most in need of services, such as those who suffer from chronic homelessness, disability or mental illness, according to Chakko.

Mike Zint, founder of First They Came for the Homeless, explained how a disabled homeless woman involved in the protest has not received housing from the Hub, despite her physical disability. Zint said he believes there to be a disconnect between the homeless and the Hub staff regarding their situation and the services they require.

“We’ve been snubbed by the Hub,” Lee said.

Lee alleged that the Hub has not been providing services, including the allocation of housing, to members of the homeless community and that the Hub has not notified them of other options available to them.

According to the Hub’s website, the organization matches homeless individuals with appropriate housing and provides services for navigating the housing process or gives referrals to other services depending on the level of need of the individual.

“Getting services to people who are homeless is not easy work,” Chakko said. “It takes repeated and sustained effort … to get them housing and things they need. The staff at Hub work very hard to deliver services that people need.”

According to Lee, many of the homeless individuals involved in the protest have tried to obtain housing through the Hub’s intake process but have not had their applications or paperwork processed. Chakko said that aspects of the Hub’s intake process, including the completion of paperwork, is required by the federal government in order for the Hub to receive funding.

Lee also complained that the Hub places some of the homeless in housing outside of Berkeley.

Former chair of the Berkeley Homeless Task Force Genevieve Wilson stated that the Hub is unable to provide housing in Berkeley due to the limited number of buildings available for housing in the city.

“The Hub is sort of stuck because they exist to help move people into housing, but they don’t build housing stock themselves,” Wilson said. “They can advocate for more housing stock but ultimately city has to get behind building more affordable housing.”

Zint stated that if the tent city is raided, they intend to continue their protest outside the homes of Mayor Tom Bates and the City Council members.

“Don’t deny us the ability to shelter ourselves,” Zint said.

Contact Sydney Fix at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @sydney_fix.

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  • August

    The homeless disabled woman has to allow herself to be labeled by the homeless Poverty Pimps as absolutely insane, and take handfuls of toxic brain-frying meds to the point of being a zombie; allow herself to be labeled by the homeless Poverty Pimps as a full-blown street-gutter alcoholic/junkie, and go through years & years of “Jesus Saves” and 12-Step religious AA/NA cult treatment programs before ever thinking about being treated with respect and dignity, and provided housing; it doesn’t matter she’s not insane or addicted…that’s the homeless system.

  • Concernedresidentofearth

    If the indigent are annoying to the residents of Berkeley for long enough, the thinking goes, then the city taxpayers will break down and give them free housing or a free place to camp with the gift of a trailer of some sort.

    Never going to happen. The indigent need a Plan B. Or in 10 years we will be having this same discussion. There is no way you are going to get free or nearly free housing or a free place to camp in Berkeley. Just not going to happen. Here’s why:

    1. Cost
    2. Will attract thousands more.
    3. Will draw people out of existing paid rentals from all over the area and city.
    4. Will result in landlords raising rents on elderly and low income tenants to drive them out, since there will be a place for them to land in the city – they won’t feel bad about raising the rent to drive someone out.

    Can you state why you believe the indigent here will get housing or a place to camp? How is this going to happen, and why would the residents agree to it?

    • Sick-Of-Bigots

      Studebaker Hawk is actually Eric Friedman. I would recognize that hatred anywhere.

    • August

      Housing became an absolute right when you made homelessness a crime.

  • James Sweitzer

    Ok, I’ll be the one to address the 800 lb. gorilla in the room – most of these people are junkies, alcoholics, and mentally disturbed.

    No amount of virtue signaling by privileged Berkley kids (white, black, or Asian) is going to change that. Address the root cause of the problem and you’ll make some headway.

    • Sam Spade

      thank you . You have heard me say over and over again there needs to priorities set. I’m not advocating for dope fiends but for those who truly want a hand up and not a hand out

      • lspanker

        You have heard me say over and over again there needs to priorities set.

        the first priority being that transients without any legitimate connection leave town.

        • intec

          the homeless dont need to go anywhere, and you cant force them either.

          • lspanker

            the homeless dont need to go anywhere

            Great, then they don’t need to be fed, clothed, or fawned over either. We can all hope for a cold, wet, windy winter so they can huddle in their canvas and cardboard hovels and pat themselves on the back because they don’t need to “go anywhere”…

          • Studebaker Hawk

            “I don’t want to clean my room! You can’t make me!”

  • intec

    defund the hub. fire everyone. it is clearly not helping, im also involved in this occupation. as a housed person, i have spent a few nights there as well, out of solidarity for those who were not as lucky as i was to get off the street. ive been homeless before. i was working the whole time. it is a miracle that i was able to get off, but i got off and thank god for that. we need at a bare minimum:

    1-managed, drug and alchohaul free tent cities-these will get the homeless off the street immeediatly and very cheaply if we ask the homeless themselves to contribute some labor towards set up and maintenence along with buying there own food. most homeless have some form of income, so it not unreasonable for them to pay for there food/tent-most already do so. and many homeless have jobs in retail, delivery. i know 2 who work for east bay parantransit part time, and one who drives the transbay routes for ac transit. tent cities would help these folk.

    2-managed drug and alchohaul free rv parking. i know plenty of these poeple. 90% dont do substances. simple rules would screen out the 10% that do. these can even cited at the tent cities if the plot is big enough. same (self contribution) applies here to.

    3-shelters are not a home, and are not housing. lets get rid of these immeediatly and replace with something else that can handle everyone at same cost. here is the whole proposal. my proposal is not perfect as it dosent accomidate the most dysfunctional, but it will help the majority.

    HOUSING THE HOMELESS WITH OFF THE SHELF
    TRVEL/CAMPING TRAILERS
    PART 1-PROBLEM/PROPOSAL
    EXISTING PROBLEM
    Despite spending 3+ million per year on homelessness, Berkeley is unable to effectively shelter more than at most 200 people. This is out of an estimated population of 1,000 people. The current policy of using mats on the Flore shelters, transitional housing, etc. is woefully unacceptable in the realms of human health, human dignity, and the more practical aim of encouraging the homeless to use services.
    Many of the homeless cannot/don’t want to use shelters for the following reasons
    ⦁ Excessive amounts of violence
    ⦁ Homo/trans phobia amongst other residence/staff
    ⦁ Excessive amounts of theft
    ⦁ Excessive amounts of lice, bedbugs, fleas, and communicable diseases
    ⦁ Service is not relevant to a demographic: the elderly, the young, lgbtq
    ⦁ Service is not relevant to a subculture for practical/psychological reasons.
    ⦁ Tyrannical rules about amount of possessions (i.e., leave your bike outside/in basement where it will be stolen)
    ⦁ Rules regarding in/out time
    ⦁ Those whose work schedule renders them incompatible with shelter policy’s
    ⦁ Etc.
    THE GOAL
    The goal should be to house the homeless in standard bricks and mortar housing, however that could take up to a decade assuming there is political will to do so. Many of the homeless will be dead by then-especially the elderly. Therefore we must consider alternatives of an intermediate term nature that provide the following benefits not found in shelters:
    ⦁ Privacy
    ⦁ Little to no theft
    ⦁ Single or double occupancy for couples-i.e. no roommates and definitely not 40 people in one room
    ⦁ Ability to come and go at any time
    ⦁ And last but not least, the quietude often found in single family detached homes. This would be beneficial to those with PTSD and anxiety issues-issues only aggravated in conventional shelters.
    THE INTERMEDIATE SOLUTION
    My solution is as follows:
    ⦁ Inventory all city owned parcels that are vacant. This can even include parking garages for more efficient use of space.
    ⦁ Use these spaces to park single occupancy trailers no more than 8 feet apart on the sides and no more than 4 feet apart from front/back end.
    ⦁ Install ramps for all the trailers for those using wheelchairs or mobility devices
    ⦁ Provide sewer/water/electric hookup for all trailers
    The benefits:
    Persons living in such an arrangement would have a very high incentive except such service because it would be their own 4 walls and a door. They would be able to have their pets and possession. Where applicable they could also have their partners/bf-gf/wife-husband with them, something not currently possible in the shelter system. Because these trailers are single/couple occupancy you would eliminate conflicts over: space, noise, theft, etc. and the occupants could cook their own food. This provides a latent effect of allowing greater usage of food stamps and pantries-reducing city expenditure on homeless programs. In short, this would provide most of the benefits of a single family detached home.
    PART 2-ONE TIME CAPITLE COSTS
    The one time capital cost to implement this solution assumes housing 1,000 people in in 1,000 trailers. It doesn’t factor in those living in RV’s who would be providing their own 4 walls and a door, or couples living together-both of which would result in needing to use less than 1,000 trailers.
    PROCUREMENT OF TRAILERS.
    This proposal is based off of the KV RV Sportsmen Show Stopper trailer. It is a 25-30 foot long travel trailer with one slide out and sleeps up to 4 people, though this should not be an excuse to use the roommate model. This trailer retails new for about $25,000 and the cost may be lower if hundreds of units are purchased in bulk. This also assumes that city of Berkeley uses Fairfield RV sales and service as its vendor. It may be possible to purchase direct from manufacturer.
    The cost for the trailers themselves is as follows:
    1,000 trailers X 25,000 each: $25,000,000
    This is not exact number, there are cheaper trailers that do the same things on the market that cost as little as $13,000 new so the cost could be even cheaper if city of Berkeley used an alternative trailer. It should do so if possible.
    Towing the trailers to the sites:
    I do not have exact numbers on how much this could cost. I have worked in public works and know the following:
    ⦁ City of Berkeley owns a fleet of around 7 90s era Navistar medium duty trucks with a straight 6 diesel and dualies. These are short chassis dump trucks, more than adequate to tow a 15,000 pound trailer. Each truck has a suitable hitch and hook/tow ball.
    ⦁ City of Berkeley pw personnel have commercial driver licenses, therefore these personnel could be temporarily reassigned to picking up and transporting the trailers from Fairfield or some other local vendor. I don’t have any information on how much that would cost. Using city pw staff eliminates the possibility of rapacious contracts and there attendant corruption.
    If city of Berkeley went for a trailer model that cost only 13,000 or a total of $13,000,000 then its possible transport and set up costs could be covered under that 25,000,000 figure as well-keeping total cost in line. I am not an expert on costing out transport and set up costs, I leave that to professionals.
    Total one-time cost: 13,000,000 to 25,000,000
    PART 3-OPERATING COSTS ONGOING
    This proposal assumes that city of Berkeley takes the rational and appropriate step of defunding its existing nonprofit providers, which consume the majority of the services budget. This would be a preferred option to keep ongoing costs low. Assuming we are housing 1,000 people we should have a staff to resident ratio of 1 per 40 residence. Assuming that each staff costs $60,000 per year in pay, benefits, and FICA the math looks like this:
    25 staff x 60,000 per year: 1,500,000 per year for staff.
    We should assume 600 per year for utilities per person because it’s a small space
    Total cost per year is computed as follows: 1,000 residence x 600: $600,000
    Including utilities and staff the total cost per year, excluding maintence/vandalism is
    $2,100,000 per year. This works out to $2,100 per homeless person versus 3,000+ while accomplishing much more. This leaves 900,000 left over for contingencies, or other services for the homeless.
    Total estimated operating cost per year: 2,100,000
    PART 4- RESIDENT SAFETY AND MANAGEMENT
    So as to ensure chaos does not occur residents should adhere to the following rules:
    ⦁ No violence
    ⦁ No drugs
    ⦁ No alcohol
    ⦁ No vandalism
    ⦁ No theft
    ⦁ No illegal activities
    Rules should be strictly enforced on a 3 strikes you’re out basis. A 1 strike and you’re out basis should be used for cases involving hard drugs and violence
    PART 5-USING THE INCOME OF THE HOMELESS
    Many homeless have an income and rent could be charged equal to 20% of that to help cover costs. About 1 third of the homeless have an income either from working or ssi/social security. Assuming 333 people have an income of around 600 per month, the revenue is as follows:
    333 people x 120 is 39,960 per month. On a yearly basis that is: $479,520
    When you subtract this number 2,100,000 the cost per year becomes:
    Yearly cost with rent: 1,620,480. Frees up money for additional support services.
    Requiring the occupants to apply for sources of income there eligible for or get a job could drive the cost even lower via increased rent income assuming we charge 20% of their income for rent. This could also free up money to make payments on financing the trailers with a 30 year lone or bond.
    PART 6-CAPITAL ACQUISITION
    It is possible to self-finance, if the politicians were willing to cut excessive salaries, and eliminate unneeded departments. Laymen have estimated that up to 57 million could be saved per year off of this, more than enough to buy the trailers. This is unlikely to happen given the vapid and absurd corruption of city hall, the unions, and special interests. Therefore debt financing will be required.
    Assuming city of Berkeley used a general obligation municipal bond at an average rate of 2.750% interest for California municipal bonds city of Berkeley would incur a monthly payment of: $102,060 the total cost for the lone including principal over 30 years is: $36,741,706. On an annual basis debts service would be the following:
    Annual debts service $1,224,720.
    The cost be lower for the following reasons:
    ⦁ Use of grant funding to cover some or all of the cost
    ⦁ The capital cost is lower than my estimate because city of Berkeley buys a cheaper trailer
    ⦁ Capital cost could be lower because city of Berkeley incurs a significant discount by buying in bulk
    ⦁ All 3 of these occur
    PART 6-GRAND TOTAL
    TOTAL ESTIMATED CAPITAL COST: $25,000,000
    TOTAL ESTIMATED OPERATING COST PER YEAR:
    Debts service: $1,224,720
    Operating staffing/utility’s: $1,620,480
    Other: $154,800
    Grand total per year if debt service is included in the homeless service budget:
    $3,000,000 annually
    $3,000 per person/year
    Economic variables that could result in the city saving money:
    ⦁ No longer paying for expensive ambulance and police services generated by those living outside
    ⦁ City of Berkeley manages to efficiently get most of the residence an income source that can then be charged at 20% for rent. This lowers direct cost making the program cheaper for the tax payers
    ⦁ City of Berkeley finds the political will to cut 1.2 million worth of wasteful spending and add that savings to services, increasing the total to 4.2 million allowing for things like counseling and case management.
    PART 7-WHAT THIS PROPOSAL DOSENT DO
    Approximately 20 percent of the homeless population is so dysfunctional that they cannot live on their own. This plan is therefore solely aimed at servicing those who are only mild to moderately dysfunctional. City of Berkeley will need to find the political will to fund and operate a locked facility for that 20%. I do not have a proposal for that as I do not know how such facility’s work. This plan assumes city of Berkeley does nothing for this subgroup (as is already the case) and we continue to let them rot on the sidewalk.

    • Concernedresidentofearth

      Utility hookups?
      Land acquisition costs?
      Maintenance and repair of trailers that are only designed to be sturdy enough to last for perhaps 100 nights of use?
      Fully loaded employee costs are over 100K.
      Someone making minimum wage at a full time job can afford an existing apartment/house share within a 15 mile radius on a public transit line. Why can’t they just use those on their own dime?
      Someone on SSI can be anywhere in the country – apartments in the midwest can be had for $400 for a two bedroom. Perhaps you would get more traction if you suggested assistance in transporting oneself there.

      • intec

        Then you dont get it. Either be part of the solution here in berkeley or stay out of the issue. Transporting poeple out is not an option.

        • Studebaker Hawk

          Stay out of the issue but continue having our tax dollars wasted on this? No thanks.

          • intec

            you still dont get it. you can either help or choose not to. but you dont get the right to obstruct those who are helping. if you dont want your money spent on the homeless, then you can move to a town that dosent provide homeless services. perhaps you should be lobbying for the closure of the hub, a non functioning program.

          • SouthernGirl

            As a tax paying resident it is hard to have sympathy when I see homeless folks disrespecting the community by blocking sidewalks, smoking, drinking, engaging in loud verbal altercations and leaving garbage around.

          • lspanker

            How about YOU move to a town where you can get a JOB and find housing you can AFFORD? Stop whining like a baby because you can’t force a guilt trip on working taxpayers who are tired of seeing you and your ilk sitting on your butts stirring up s–t instead of going to work every day live everyone else?

          • Gene Nelson

            How stupid are you”? If we don’t want our money spent on drug addicts, we can stop funding programs. We live here, we fund the programs, and we can de-fund the programs.

          • Concernedresidentofearth

            Yes we do get to obstruct. Our rights to the fruits of our labor are going to be impinged, so I damn well will obstruct as much as I feel like it.

            If you suggested “can the mayor get together with other mayors to work at a national level to solve homelessness at that level” I won’t obstruct, I would assist and support such as effort.

            If you suggested “give us public land on which to camp or top up our rent payments so we can live where we prefer in private single occupancy dwellings”, I’ll fight you every step of the way.

        • Concernedresidentofearth

          Are you joking? Housing the indigent in Berkeley will never happen. I’m at least talking about plausible solutions.

        • lspanker

          Transporting poeple out is not an option.

          Why not?

      • intec

        Also house shares dont work for everyone. Poeple need there space.

        • Jeff T

          Also, please don’t forget the whirlpool tubs. Backs get real sore sitting on the sidewalk all day, and people need there hot water jets.

          • lspanker

            And the Posturepedic mattresses. Can’t be cheerful homeless people without a good night’s sleep.

        • Concernedresidentofearth

          You are going to have to earn that privacy, sorry.

        • lspanker

          Funny how the homeless “need their space” but the rest of us don’t. I had housemates for several years after graduating from Cal with an engineering degree so I could start paying down student loans and other bills while working. You’re in effect demanding a luxury for people who for the most part aren’t even inclined to lift a finger to provide for their own necessities…

    • Gene Nelson

      How many homeless did you invite to share your home with?

    • August

      Why can’t the working homeless have a beer after work?

  • Gene Nelson

    Sheltering themselves is not the issue. The bottles of urine, the discarded needles, the feces -=- things that are found in all homeless camps — those are the issue. If you want community help, act like a member of the community and dispose of that stuff properly.

    • Sam Spade

      Come to Adeline and you will see the reality of what we are talking about. None of the problems you holler about exisit in our intentional community

  • Sam Spade

    Here is thestart to solving homelessness

  • Doc

    The ultimate protest of Berkeley’s campers is to take their business elsewhere. Wouldn’t that be nice?

    • Sam Spade

      Give me your address and ill move into your front yard. Either that or calm down and help us solve the problem

      • lspanker

        To paraphrase the black militants of the 1960’s, you’re way too much part of the problem to be part of the solution.

      • Studebaker Hawk

        The problem, if you can call it that, is that there is a group of people that for some reason think they deserve to be completely supported by the taxpayers of Berkeley and have no means or intentions of contributing anything to society. There’s no solution for that other than reality being forced on those people in the same way it was forced on the huge number of grifters that used to plague Santa Monica where I grew up. All of the goodwill and generosity shown by the taxpayers will have been burned up. The free health care, clothes, and three hot meals per day will dry up. Citizens and then cops won’t allow you to just lay around all day getting high and stealing bikes when you need more money for drugs and booze. The smart ones realize that it’s time to stop acting like spoiled children and start living like adults, the not so smart ones realize that there are easier pickings elsewhere and move on, and the dumb ones start ending up in jail for vagrancy and petty theft. This isn’t a new phenomenon.

  • Paul-Kealoha Blake

    The primary individual responsible for the multiple moves and confiscation of property in this physical protesting of HUB services is Jim Hynes… Assistant City Manager of the City of Berkeley. He originally raided them on Fairview St. At the HUB… that contributed to moving them to Downtown Berkeley, and from there to their current site at Adeline and Ward St.

    • Studebaker Hawk

      Well thank you very much then Jim Haynes. The less we make Berkeley a destination for out of town or, in Zint’s case, state vagabonds the better.

      • Paul-Kealoha Blake

        Nice sarcastic response from anonymity. I would like to correct your perspective. The HUB is exactly where they should have been as directed by your Federal government. The HUB is an instrument created by HUD to allow Berkeley to receive federal funds to assist human beings who have no shelter. Your perspective that these humans should somehow be punished for that is absurd. What happens when we are done punishing and attempting to erase a national problem? You find it easy to blame Mike Zint… who unlike yourself does not hide behind a cloak of anonymity. Perhaps more camps Studebaker? Camps devoted to the erasure of human value?

        • Anybody But Jesse

          Mike Zint has family on the east coast who can help him. We do not need to.

          • Paul-Kealoha Blake

            You don’t need to help and you choose not to… that isn’t enough though is it? You need to impose your values on others… and punish them if they don’t adhere to your choices. Don’t help… simply hide in your anonymity telling others that you don’t help. I will make my own choices, with or without your help… and I share my name so you will know who I am, and choose to help… or not.

          • Gene Nelson

            And how tolerant of you of people who don’t agree with you Paul? You make your own choices of what is okay and what should be done, and then you slam others who don’t agree with you. Kettle.

          • Paul-Kealoha Blake

            I can’t recall the last time I slammed anyone for not “agreeing” with me. No one needs to agree with me. As I clearly state I am able to decide for myself who to help, how to help, and why to help. I appreciate you using your name. Regarding Jim Hynes.. the protestors were not blockading or limiting access to or from the HUB. Additionally, they were at the very agency that was created as a single portal to services. They were exactly where they should have been.

          • lspanker

            You don’t need to help and you choose not to… that isn’t enough though
            is it? You need to impose your values on others… and punish them if
            they don’t adhere to your choices.

            And Whisky-Tango-Foxtrot do you think the homeless are doing when they set up their little crack-dealing and bicycle-chop-shop camps; urinate, defecate, and leave trash and needles in the common space, aggressively panhandle and threaten others who don’t give in to their demands? Thanks to the idiotic policies of misguided goo-goo liberals, cities like Berkeley, SF and Santa Cruz have been held hostage way too long by lazy, violent and antisocial gutter trash masquerading as “victims”.

        • Studebaker Hawk

          That’s not sarcasm, I truly mean that. And I’m no more anonymous than you.

        • lspanker

          Nice sarcastic response from anonymity. I would like to correct your perspective.

          His perspective requires no “correcting”. Why should Berkeley be so generous and tolerant of deviant behavior from the homeless to the point it provides an incentive for indigents from other places to come to Berkeley and take up residence on the sidewalks? Most people understand the need and importance of helping LOCAL RESIDENTS down on their luck to get BACK ON THEIR FEET. They do NOT see the need to provide a protected refuge for bums, derelicts, alkies, druggies, gutter punks, and various and sundry lazy malcontents to MIGRATE there to pursue their CHOSEN LIFESTYLE at the expense of working taxpayers.

    • Jeff T

      Excellent work, Jim Hynes! Keep it up, my friend.

      • intec

        jeff t-if you dont like homeless poeple, move to a rural area. we dont need uninformed haters in our community. we need poeple who can propose cost effective solutions that solve the whole problem. cops, courts, and laws are not that, by the way.

        • Studebaker Hawk

          If you moved to Berkeley to live on the streets or in the parks then you are, by definition, not part of our community. Nobody is taking issue with Berkeley residents who, for whatever reason, find themselves without somewhere to live. I’m all for spending tax money to help them out. But we aren’t talking about those people.

          • SouthernGirl

            Agree wholeheartedly with your stance Sir Hawk. *Signed Berkeley native and resident*

      • Sam Spade

        Let me go get you a set of pom pom. clearly you don’t realize the cost involved to chase homeless people. We estimate a minimum of $20,000 to evict us from the front of the hub. Even more significant is the fact you have police officers spending 50% of their time dealing with quality of life issues. Issues which can be resolved not through emotion but practical ideas. Ideas which are continually put in front of people like arreguin.
        But you would rather chase the homeless while gunfire resonates off the walls of south Berkeley in particular and the city in general.
        Yeah buddy you got the solution. Jup up and down hysterically condemning those who are merely complying with city directives and trying to survive

        • lspanker

          Let me go get you a set of pom pom. clearly you don’t realize the cost
          involved to chase homeless people. We estimate a minimum of $20,000 to
          evict us from the front of the hub.

          You’re lucky I don’t run for mayor. If I ran Berkeley, I would give all homeless that could not provide any proof of a legitimate connection to there (prior residence, current employment or college attendance) 48 hours to leave town. For those smart enough to take me up on the offer the first time, I would provide a clean shower, fresh set of new clothes, a backpack with tent and sleeping bag, a flat of bottled water and a case of MREs, a throwaway phone with the first month paid up, a Greyhound/Amtrak ticket to some suitable destination at least 200 miles away, as well as a shuttle ride to the Emeryville transit hub, and wish you luck on your next camping adventure. Choose not to take me up on the offer, and you may find out at 5 in the morning what kind of motivation to move on can be achieved with a BFD pumper truck, a 4″ hose and nozzle, and a couple of thousand gallons of ice-cold 55 molar dihydrogen oxide. My solution to the so-called “homeless” problem in Berkeley is quite simple: a good-sized carrot but an even bigger stick. Think about while you whine and cry and blame others because you can’t get your s–t together in life.

          • intec

            your plan is invalid. here is a copy of the bill of rights, free country, love it or leave it.

            The Preamble to The Bill of Rights
            Congress of the United States
            begun and held at the City of New-York, on
            Wednesday the fourth of March, one thousand seven hundred and eighty nine.

            THE Conventions of a number of the States, having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Government, will best ensure the beneficent ends of its institution.

            RESOLVED by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled, two thirds of both Houses concurring, that the following Articles be proposed to the Legislatures of the several States, as amendments to the Constitution of the United States, all, or any of which Articles, when ratified by three fourths of the said Legislatures, to be valid to all intents and purposes, as part of the said Constitution; viz.

            ARTICLES in addition to, and Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America, proposed by Congress, and ratified by the Legislatures of the several States, pursuant to the fifth Article of the original Constitution.

            Note: The following text is a transcription of the first ten amendments to the Constitution in their original form. These amendments were ratified December 15, 1791, and form what is known as the “Bill of Rights.”

            Amendment I
            Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

            Amendment II
            A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

            Amendment III
            No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

            Amendment IV
            The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

            Amendment V
            No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

            Amendment VI
            In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.

            Amendment VII
            In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

            Amendment VIII
            Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

            Amendment IX
            The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

            Amendment X
            The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

          • lspanker

            There’s no “freedom” to be vagrants or sponge off the efforts of others. Your understanding of the Bill of Rights is about as bad as your spelling and grammar.

          • intec

            then you dont understand the constitution. criminalising the act of sleeping is unconstitutional. the homeless have a right to exist, and a right to rest. if you dont like, go to a country that dosent have a bill of rights.

          • Concernedresidentofearth

            Supreme court agrees. But if the city provides shelter (and the Supreme court is silent on the location) in Ely, Nevada, and the indigent refuse to take it, you can be arrested for street camping.

          • lspanker

            then you dont understand the constitution. criminalising the act of sleeping is unconstitutional.

            Nobody’s criminalizing “sleeping”, you bloviating twit. This is the type of patent flatulence your type emits when you can’t acknowledge that you have no right or moral authority to force others to subsidize your vagrant lifestyle.

          • August

            WRONGO; when you keep people from working you owe them everything!

          • intec

            the homeless are not going to leave, nor should they. you can either help them here, or you can choose not to do so. but you do not get the right to make them leave or obstruct those who are helping. why dont you come down to adeline and talk to some homeless poeple?