Denver's federal money for the homeless has dried up, as has grant money. In 2005, then Mayor John Hickenlooper introduced Denver's Road Home project, to help the homeless find shelter and programs addressing drug addiction, alcoholism and mental illness, believed to contribute to homelessness.
But we have more homeless than ever -- more than 11,000 in downtown Denver. Many like to sleep on the 16th st Mall where it's well-lit and police are usually nearby. There's no law preventing sleeping on the street.
Now, with the increased numbers of homeless persons. the shelters are full, the temporary house is full, and the social programs have waiting lists.
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First the cheers. San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom has declared the war on drugs a failure.
"If you want to get serious, if you want to reduce crime by 70% in this country overnight, end this war on drugs," he told reporters at City Hall on Thursday. "You want to get serious, seriously serious about crime and violence end this war on drugs."
The mayor maintained local jails are overcrowded with people incarcerated for drug offenses, taking up room that could be used to hold more violent criminal offenders. He said violent criminals with lengthy felony records are being turned loose, too often.
San Francisco Sheriff San Francisco Sheriff Mike Hennessey agrees with him.
Now the jeers. San Francisco is initiating a program of busting the homeless on "quality of life" crimes.
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A federal judge in Los Angeles has ruled police skid row searches unconstitutional:
U.S. District Judge Dean D. Pregerson found that officers question — and at times search — parolees and probationers without evidence that they might have committed a crime, which the judge said was unconstitutional. He ordered the LAPD to change its practices.
This is the second victory for those on skid row:
A federal appeals court last year found the city's anti-camping ordinance to be unconstitutional, scuttling LAPD efforts to prevent the homeless from sleeping on downtown sidewalks at night.
TChris reported on that here.
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