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TO: — SALEM CITY COUNCIL AND MAYOR RE: HOMELESS PROBLEMS ON CHURCH STREET NE CONNECTED TO HOAP- PROGRAM DATE: JUNE 2017 We are property owners, residents, and staff of businesses on Church Street NE between Union and D Street. This is a mixed residential and business neighborhood with attorneys, psychological counseling offices, a medical sleep center, single family and multi-family residences. This neighborhood has been a desirable location with many well-maintained businesses and vintage houses on the north edge of downtown Salem. Since the HOAP program (Homeless Advocacy Program) managed by NW Human Services located on our block several years ago, we have had ongoing problems with clients of HOAP services. Problems have significantly worsened in the past several months as homeless people and their belongings have been continually lingering or sleeping around the HOAP building at all hours. In talking with a HOAP staff member, services are currently available to ‘anyone who shows up’. Many, if not most, of HOAP clients have mental illness or substance abuse problems. After contacting Paul Logan, Director of NW Human Services, the loitering and sleeping around the building and adjacent buildings has significantly improved during business hours. However, on weekends when the office is closed and the police downtown enforcement team is off duty, there are often 6-10 shopping carts filled with household belongings parked in front of the HOAP building, with homeless citizens coming and going. According to an officer of the Salem police department which has been called many times in recent months, this increased loitering and sleeping in public and private properties by HOAP clients corresponds to a 50% reduction of services by the downtown Union Gospel Mission due to fire safety issues. As a result, many of Salem's homeless population are now receiving meals, showers, laundry services, coffee, and socializing in our neighborhood, bringing with them all of their household belongings which can no longer be stored at the mission. Problems we have experienced in our neighborhood with HOAP clients include: 1. People sleeping and intoxicated in fenced backyards, under bushes or on porches of homes and businesses, leaving blankets, empty bottles and trash 2. Hypodermic needles left in bushes of residences with young children 3. Loud arguing and fighting among recipients in front of HOAP and in the alley west of Church Street, frightening residents and children . HOAP clients urinating and defecating at the entrance of a business and threatening staff A resident approached by a mentally ill patient with a knife A resident's tires slashed Items stolen from residential porches . Up to 20 people at once with shopping carts of belongings loitering, and sleeping in front of the HOAP offices 9. Significant increase in trash along the street 10.Residents being hassled, and panhandled by HOAP clients 11,Women residents being heckled and approached by mentally ill HOAP recipients. 12.Several people camping along the HOAP building evenings and weekends in violation of ordinances. This has occurred frequently during daytime and weekday hours as well. 13.According to residents, on a recent morning, there were approximately 30 people and shopping carts loitering in front of the HOAP building at 7:30 am. 14, Recently a resident describing the following situation as “creepy”, asked two sleeping men to leave her fenced private backyard, but they did not respond. She had to call a handiman to come to wake them and make them leave. Empty bottles, clothes, cans were left had to be disposed of by the handiman. Our businesses and residents have been negatively affected by these problems. Prospective renters have chosen not to rent apartments because of the visible nuisance factor along the street. Business clients likewise are uncomfortable parking and entering businesses. ONO Prior to the arrival of the HOAP program, this was a desirable neighborhood of classic, vintage, well-maintained homes and businesses. Before the recent homeless crisis, HOAP provided mainly medication management and counseling services to identified clients, and following neighbor complaints, had ceased to provide coffee to anyone who showed up regardless of whether they received services. This had reduced loitering, loud arguing, confrontations with residents and trash. Recent. expansion of services to include meals, showers, laundry and peer support to all comers has reversed this situation and significantly exacerbated the problem. According to the Salem Compliance Department they no longer work with homeless persons because they are unarmed and it is considered too dangerous. While we support the mission of providing needed services to Salem's homeless population, it is our belief that it is inappropriate for these services to be rendered in this neighborhood due to its negative impact on residents, apartment owners and businesses. While we appreciate the recent efforts of HOAP staff to reduce loitering, we urgently request help from the city in alleviating this problem. Sincerely, Church Street Neighborhood (see signature page)