City of Portland received almost 450 homeless complaints in one - KPTV - FOX 12

City of Portland received almost 450 homeless complaints in one week

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

They are somewhat alarming numbers and they illustrate the tensions between the homeless and the neighborhoods they’ve moved into following the sweep of the Springwater Corridor. 

The city of Portland says last week they received roughly 450 complaints regarding homeless camps.

One area where neighbors are upset is along Southeast 97th and Foster where homeless campers have set up tents on a traffic island.

Neighbors say in the last month they have filed nearly 50 complaints with the city.

“I was over here talking to the one woman today and she was apologizing about what happened last night, all the noise and the fighting,” neighbor Thomas Legg said.

Legg has lived in the neighborhood for 19 years and has seen the ups and downs.

“We’ve seen some rough years and we’ve seen it get much much better, and within the last year and a half it has gotten much, much worse,” Legg said.

He says neighbors are frustrated with what they see as an increase in crime in the neighborhood, and attribute it to the camp. He says they constantly see drug use, people defecating, and lurking around homes. 

Legg says this all happens within feet of a very busy school bus stop.

Those who live in this camp say they really have no where else to go. 

Brent Miller stays at the camp occasionally. He says for many homeless people they are finding it harder and harder to find a place to go to get a stable footing that will allow them to get back on their feet. Miller says they are constantly being told to move.

“Their daily lives are totally disrupted constantly, you get a few days of peace and then harassment,” Miller said.

The city of Portland says they want neighbors, like Legg, to continue to report issues surrounding homeless camps that pop up. They use the data to prioritize where crews need to focus their attention to see what help can be used.

City officials say they are working as quickly as possible to open more shelter beds and are working on a long term solution.

They add if the issues are criminal in nature that you report them to police.

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