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KOIN NEWS 6 - Neighbors in Lents protested an alternative homeless camp planned by the city on Saturday.Tensions are rising in East Portland ahead of the Sept. 1 deadline for homeless campers to leave the Springwater Corridor that connects downtown to Gresham.


Some of the hundreds of people believed to be camping along the corridor say they have nowhere to go and a number of activists are encouraging civil disobedience.

“All we’re asking for is a place to live to call our own,” camper Tim Scott said at an Aug. 23 community meeting in Lents. It was called to discuss the sweep ordered by Mayor Charlie Hales in response to increasing public health and safety problems caused by some of the homeless.

At the same time, some residents in Lents, near where many of the homeless are camping, are worried they will only move into the surrounding business and residential areas.

“I think they’re going to move the troubles of the [Springwater Corridor] right into the heart of my neighborhood,” says Lents resident Maximilian Hollie.

And on Saturday, dozens of restaurants protested neat a vacant city-owned property at Southeast Reedway and 104th Avenue that the city is preparing for between 50 and 100 of the displaced campers.

Some protesters say what bothers them at much as the plans for the outdoor shelter, is that the city never involved them in the conversation about it.

“We’ve shouldered the burden of the city’s homeless problem for so long that we’re feeling broken at this point,” resident Nicolas Manusos said at the Aug. 27 protest. “And for this to happen without any public involvement, without any neighborhood involvement is awful.”

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