Communities meet in SE Portland to address homeless concerns, fi - KPTV - FOX 12

Communities meet in SE Portland to address homeless concerns, find possible solutions

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

Two different community meetings were held in southeast Portland to discuss the options that could solve homelessness in the city.

At Savage Memorial Presbyterian Church different agencies came together Tuesday night to talk about long-term solutions.

“We’re spending a lot of money on shelter beds,” Portland City Commissioner Dan Saltzman said. “We’re also spending a lot of money on building permanent affordable housing.”

Saltzman explains affordable means a family or individual is spending about 30 percent of their income on housing. He adds, there is a gap of 24,000 affordable housing in the city.

The people at the meeting had similar concerns to those who met in the Lents Neighborhood Association meeting.

“Are they going to move the people there to our neighborhood?” Neida Gomez said. “And then after that move to someone else’s neighborhood?”

Gomez, 13, helps her mother take care of her younger siblings. She said her toddler brother loves to play outside the house. With the City of Portland planning a sweep of homeless camps on the Springwater Corridor September 1, Gomez and her family are concerned.

“We don’t know who is going to be moving in,” Gomez said.

Tim Scott, who is living on the Springwater Corridor, said not all homeless people cause problems and felt targeted at the meeting.

Scott said he’s concerned, if the issue isn’t addressed immediately the issue will repeat itself.

"We need temporary, authorized places to go. Otherwise, we're going on the bike trail somewhere else, and we're going to do it all over again," said Scott.

Captain Robert King with Portland Police Bureau said as of September 1, people can no longer be on the Springwater Corridor and cannot be on the general vicinity of it.

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