Most unfortunate. I hope the leaders of this action will continue to be responsible for the safety and survival of the other residents. In my opinion, it would have been much better if those who were unhappy about the leadership at this encampment were to seek an alternative support system to replace the one (LIHI, Church of the Good Shepherd, ABCD Trust) that had been created for them BEFORE cutting loose from that structure. Very risky move.

The thing is, these residents were never given an opportunity to do that by the organizations. The only options they were provided were "continue working with Scott" or "permanent eviction". That is it. Residents and community members are in the process of searching for other groups who may be willing to come aboard as sponsors to keep this encampment going within acceptable parameters for the city.
This coup-followed-by-eviction threat at Nickelsville is part of a pattern whereby the operator simultaneously cements its authority over the camp at its reasserts its influence with the city. Legally, the operator is not allowed to summarily evict residents. Since the operator receives money from the City, the residents are entitled to an independent (!) review of their grievances and a notice of eviction. But since the residents don't have the legal wherewithal to challenge their eviction, and since the operator has friends at City Hall, it is unlikely that anyone will put a stop to this bullying soon. I have written extensively about this situation on The Blog Quixotic. See here, for example . . .…
As I have been trying to tell people, drugs are rampant in these tent cities. It is now so bad that even the residents are willing to face eviction just to get the drugs out. Tent City is no better systemically, either. People like Morrow, at the top of the food chain within the tent city itself, are the ones supporting the drug trade, as they are making a profit from it.

Until we come to accept that drugs are this bad in these encampments, we're going to make no progress in getting people or drugs out of them.
An "enforcer" is really not okay past a short-term emergency. If that's your best answer, you've got to be getting past that.

Lee and Morrow sound like a nasty cabal.
Encampments are inhabited by human beings. Human beings all have personalities, and those personalities don't always mesh well, especially when living very closely together. They are essentially families. It's apparent that several commenters above live in families whose members have always been supportive of each other, cooperated with each other, and demonstrated admirable maturity in their dealings with other family members. Being perfect human beings, they don't need anything approaching rules, or anyone to enforce those rules.

Which is just sheer nonsense, because those families don't exist, in homes or in tent encampments.

So glad we aren't reliant on government housing projects so we can have petty fash like Sharon Lee and her bullies running privatize public housing. Thankfully she's willing to do this for a mere $178,000 a year. If only more people were willing to buy up buildings with tax dollars and administer them for such a humble fee.
Good. One less homeless city is a great thing. Perhaps if people don't have a camp to go to they will have the incentive to find a job and get an apartment.
Good. One less homeless city is a great thing. Perhaps if homeless didn't have a nice camp to go to they would have an incentive to get a job and rent an apartment.
@6: And therefore, all the crime and abusive behavior by those living in a tent city is given a pass because their personalities don't mesh well.
Raindrop, your claims don't at all follow what I said, which was that humans don't always get along with each other. But if you have intimate knowledge of "all the crime and abusive behavior" going on in encampments -- i.e., you have seen it and have reported it to the police -- please share that with us,
@12: Are tent encampments not without controversy? Should any public land be illegally lived in by those who choose not to contributing members of society - even if some of them are mentally ill, drug dependent, poor, or down on their luck?

Should citizens who spend their money and hard work to create jobs and improve society be subject to the blight of unacceptable trash, hypodermic needles, human waste, public intoxication, and the result of loss of business in those neighborhoods?

Sarah, it's very easy, as I'm sure you have found, to hang your hat the unlimited compassion for the downtrodden whom sadden us all, and whom we acknowledge that were "one paycheck away from them" -- nevertheless - it doesn't do anyone any good to advocate the that we must help everyone else before we help ourselves; when the exact opposite is true and is better for those whom we are trying to help.
"...Since the operator receives money from the City..."
Does the City provide funding for the Nickelsville Dearborn encampment? I wasn't aware that it did.

I thought it was funded by private donations and hosted by a religious congregation. That's the way other tent encampments have survived all these years without City funding.
@9 You fail to recognize that in order to get a job you need to have a place where your basic needs are being met, otherwise you spend every waking moment trying to meet basic needs, something you and I take for granted each and every day. It's common sense. If you can't shower, if you don't have a place for your belongings, if you don't have an address, it's nearly impossible to get and maintain a job. It makes so much rational sense I'm surprised more people don't get that.

I helped rescue a homeless family last year and now that they have housing, they do have jobs. Shocker.

@4: you're accusing Morrow of profiting from the drug trade in this camp? one would think if you had that information that was the case, you'd pursue it with the police.

or are you just throwing out a baseless accusation?
We live in the time of homelessness. And in a time where people will make homeless even more homeless for spectacle. I challenge someone to put a team of cameras on Scott Morrow and follow his story. He is the biggest and most newsworthy man in all of Seattle. He has had several non-profits from which he profited from before getting into the homeless business. Now as SHARE and Nickelsville organizer he pockets donation monies left and right without little oversight because no one wants to do his job, running Seattle's downtown ragtag inside shelter network. His mom is a legitimate charity superstar and has sway over Seattle city politics and his brother is a lawyer who works for Community Transit. He has never been homeless.

He cares nothing for the people who call his shelters home. What transpired to make this Nickelsville encampment to breakaway from his control is his lack of empathy for an attempted suicide that happened there. They don't understand him or his policies, and he doesn't try to include them in his decisions. There is no set grievance procedure to address campers issues. He acts as if his will is God. No other homeless organizer I've ever dealt with threatens to take away the basic amenities of dignified living (Portapotties, trash service) and expulsion from camp with no regard for their safety.

His policies make for a lot of uncertainty. No feeling of stability for those who want to stand up for their own welfare. Yes, there are drugs in camp. Yes, there is mental illness in camp. And yes, there are problems that no one person can deal with on there own. But that is the same situation many are facing inside homes. Having no walls makes or address makes people a target for derision and exploitation. These people don't need nasty uninformed judgements from folks or Scott Morrow's unevenly applied and punitive enforcement of a set of rules that only he knows.
#16 Yes, yes, yes and yes. I especially like the WPA-like concept whereby folks are channeled into work, even if it's just paid work helping maintain their own community. Yes, provide land and services, preferably in centralized locations (not freaking Ballard) where services can be provided to them. Yes, consequences for not following the laws, and for drumming themselves out of provided services by acting out.

I also believe in forced services where appropriate - get the mentally ill and chronically addicted into services, involuntarily if necessary. The current standard for commitment is "dangerous to self or others" (DTSO), and many of these folks unquestionably meet those criteria.
Morrow and Sharon Lee et al prefer that people remain homeless because it is lucrative for them to remain so. That is their business. You that slander the homeless from the comfort of your cushy homes should be ashamed. The very wealthy with their banks and wall street practices have created homelessness which was very rare before 1980. Its profitable to have people homeless in more ways than one. This is a terrible scandal which must be revealed. “Forced services?” You mean no human rights. How about jailing the banksters that stole trillions of dollars from the common people/ taxpayers? And did so much to push more people into poverty. Stop criminalizing the poor who have been imprisoned, degraded for cheap labor, taxed heavily and fined with the little they have for the purpose of profit. Housing is a human right not a privilege for the rich.
What kind of people would cut off water, garbage service, porta potties from very poor people? Who does that? The encampment people are told to give up their dignity for a strip of dirt, a tent, or a shack and told if they don’t they are thrown out. They have no rights its whatever their overseers want. This city should be ashamed to be any part of this and further ashamed to allow this to go on. Go to the Dearborne encampment and meet these people. They are articulate, decent working class people and I have met them. But if you go to threaten, degrade or think you are better than poor people (classism) don’t bother.
Camp Dearborn versus the Scott Morrow machine

With other activists I have visited the Dearborn encampment and it is being run in a competent, safe, (and as much as possible with the conditions they have inherited from Scott Morrow’s watch) in a healthy and self governed manner. People bring their families with children to visit the camp.

We have heard Sharon Lee’s statements to the media that the campers are drug dealers, criminals, etc. These are absolutely blatant lies and we are disgusted that anyone would betray the public with such statements especially anyone in that position.

All three of the Nickelsville tent cities voted to oust Scott Morrow as their manager/boss but the only encampment that has not collapsed under the threats and lies perpetrated against them by the Morrow/Lee machine is the Dearborn camp.

They have been subjected to abuse such as screaming by Morrow insulting them and threats to kick them out by banning them from the camp, their only shelter, if they break any of the hundreds of arbitrary rules such as not being able to attend a meeting because they have to work. Any displeasure from Morrow means not having any shelter and having to deal with the streets or the jungle and risking their lives.

They are articulate, decent, working class people who could self govern without Morrow and company. Camp Dearborn needs real compassionate assistance from other competent providers.
I have been at nickelsville before, and scott marrow does bully, threaten and intimidate the campers. He yells at them as if they were children. It seems the mayors office would see a pattern here with this morrow and lee group. But instead the mayor just keeps handing them more encampments. If scott don't like a person are a person don't agree with him(marrow) then that person or person's are gone. He profits big time from this camp that he runs down into the ground. This is a self managed camp which means the camp runs itself, they don't have to have scott as an overseer of the camp! Anyone could over see it and probably do a great job but lee, marrow and pastor of the church are all real good friends and are scared that if scott don't run the camp the cant benefit from it! What a shame this is to put more homeless people oit in the streets. Mayor murrey what are you doing about this whole situation! Give the homeless encampments to someone other than marrow or lee.

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