Council Committee Backs Current Homeless Camp Cleanup Process

Jul 10, 2019

Catholic Action Center Residents Gathered Outside City Hall Following Council Committee Discussion on Camp Cleanup Process
Credit Stu Johnson

A Lexington council committee is endorsing existing standard operating procedures for the cleaning up of homeless camps on public property.  A representative from Louisville appeared before the General Government and Social Services Committee Tuesday to explain that city’s 21-day notice policy. 

Lexington Homelessness Prevention and Intervention Office Director Polly Ruddick said the current process in Fayette County doesn’t specify a certain number of days. “So, when you talk about seven days, 14 days, 21 days.  To me and this is just me personally, all I hear is you’re going to be penalized in seven, 14, 21 days for being homeless,” said Ruddick

Ruddick said street outreach workers make sure everyone in a homeless camp is notified about clean up schedules.  Ginny Ramsey with the Catholic Action Center requested the council adopt an ordinance establishing at least a five day notice.  Ramsey said setting a specific date ensures homeless know how much time they have to gather up personal belongings.  “A set time so these folks will know their camp will not be destroyed during that time period that they either may be in shelter, in a hospital, or in jail,” noted Ramsey.

A resolution supporting the current practice passed out of committee. 

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