Tag Archives: Bureau of Housing and Community Development

Sending out an S.O.S.

Police, shelter workers and advocates work to piece together a month long pattern of violence

three-womenBy Rebecca Robinson
Contributing Writer
On a recent Friday afternoon at Sisters of the Road Café on Northwest Davis Street, women shared their stories of sexual assault and domestic violence. One woman, who asked not to be identified by name, said that her 14-year-old daughter was recently gang-raped at a party by three teenage boys who attend her school.

“No one is immune,” the woman said, her forceful voice a stark contrast to the tears flowing down her cheeks. “It’s not a prostitute problem; it’s not a homeless problem; it’s not even just a woman problem.”

In downtown Portland, a recent set of incidents has brought the problem into stark relief for women on the streets.
Portland police, homeless shelter workers, and women’s crisis advocates are working to piece together a month-long pattern of violent sexual assaults by multiple male attackers on young homeless women. But the police are struggling to conduct an investigation because the victims, many of them sex workers, fear that going to the police may lead to their arrest for other unlawful activities.

A former sex worker known as Jasmine contacted Street Roots last month, saying, “I have a story that needs to be told.” It was a story that, for some on the streets, was all too familiar.
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Full story: Making a pitch for tents

(Story from June 27 issue) By Amanda Waldroupe

One of the reverberating aftershocks of the three-week-long homeless protest outside City Hall is the question of whether Portland needs another “tent city” to solve the problem of homelessness.

“It’s necessary because of the amount of poor people who need a place to be other than outside,” says Larry Reynolds, one of the protest’s leaders.

The resolve and desire may exist at the street level, but another question begs raising: is there the support among the people who can actually make another tent city happen?

“There’s a million other questions I would ask,” says Mark Lakeman, the founder of the City Repair Project and the architect and designer of Dignity Village.

“Shall people be engaged in converting their own problems into their own solutions? Shall a group of people living in streets see themselves as having value? Can they contribute to the world? Of course,” he says.

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Housing puzzle: New Street Roots on the streets tomorrow

(July 10) With a new housing commissioner, mayor and City Council on the horizon, Portland’s affordable housing developers decided in January that it was time to start looking at their operations in a new light. Six months later, five major housing development entities within the Portland area are undergoing a collaborative evaluation: the Housing Authority of Portland, the Bureau of Housing and Community Development, the Portland Development Commission, Gresham city government and Multnomah County.

The evaluation is being overseen by the Seattle firm Clegg and Associates and is being called the Clegg Report. The report may radically change the way business is done on the front lines of homelessness and affordable housing and is do out in August. Contributing reporter Anthony Schick has the scoop.

Two area attorneys gear up to challenge Portland’s controversial Sidewalk Obstruction Ordinance (sit-lie), Randy Leonard and the Bureau of Housing and Community Development butt heads over shelter beds, and Sally Erickson is named the new head of the Portland’s 10-year plan to end homelessness.

All of this and much more in the new edition of Street Roots hitting the streets tomorrow.

Posted by Israel Bayer