The following is an open letter from residents of the Clarendon Encampment, in Woodland Hills, to Mayor Karen Bass, published here as an op-ed. The LA City Council recently approved a resolution, submitted by Councilmember Bob Blumenfield, that designated an area that includes the Clarendon Encampment, an anti-camping zone, under LAMC 41.18.

Dear Hon. Mayor Karen Bass,

We, the residents of the Clarendon encampment, do not agree with the continuous 41.18 zone sweeps or the latest vote for our encampment specifically to be swept.

Many of us have already been swept multiple times, pushed from location to location, and promised that we are on waiting lists and that housing is coming soon. Yet again we are being told we will be arrested or forcibly moved without any plan as to where we can go.

Around 20% to 25% of the people at this encampment are over the age of 50 and/or have serious medical concerns. We also take umbrage with the negative portrayal of this encampment in the media.

In light of the impending sweep, we request that the sweep on Clarendon not take place unless, and until we have been offered the opportunity to participate in the Inside Safe program, including the ability to be connected to resources and services available to people in that program.

In a show of good faith, we are offering to work together to help keep the street clean if the city can provide porta-potties and 100-gallon dumpster, services weekly.

We would also like to work with the city to report illegal dumping by housed neighbors. For example, there currently are items at the encampment that have been dumped by housed people.


The Residents of the Clarendon Encampment