ACLU of Texas calls on City of Dallas to End Cycle of Homeless Evictions

Affiliate: ACLU of Texas
October 25, 2016 10:00 am

ACLU Affiliate
ACLU of Texas
Media Contact
125 Broad Street
18th Floor
New York, NY 10004
United States

DALLAS – In a letter issued Friday to Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings and Dallas City Council members, the ACLU of Texas warned city officials that they must respect the constitutional rights of the homeless, cease enforcement of the city’s unconstitutional ordinance banning sleeping in public and seek legal, humane and long-term solutions to the city’s homelessness crisis.

On October 25, the City of Dallas will close the Haskell encampment, located at I-30 and Haskell Avenue. This will be Dallas’s third major homeless encampment clearance this year.

The following may be attributed to Kali Cohn, Staff Attorney of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Texas:

“Once they are forced to leave under threat of criminal prosecution, many Haskell residents will have nowhere to go because there are not enough accessible emergency shelter beds. Dallas cannot continue to use its police powers as a stopgap response to homelessness while it waits on the recommendations from its Commission on Homelessness. This is not a problem criminal law can solve. Until the City commits to viable long-term solutions, at a minimum, City officials must stop inhumanely — and in some cases unconstitutionally — criminalizing behavior like sleeping in public to which homeless residents have no alternative.”

Letter dispatched to Mayor Rawlings and Dallas City Council:

Every month, you'll receive regular roundups of the most important civil rights and civil liberties developments. Remember: a well-informed citizenry is the best defense against tyranny.