City Tells Homeless Move, Man Takes Stand
All the homeless have been told to leave Portland City Hall. The sidewalks will be pressure washed, and they will not be allowed to return because the sidewalk is being re-zoned. It will happen sometime this week, as early as Monday morning.
But one man is taking a stand.
"If I'm protesting, I really don't think I should have to move. It's a violation of my first amendment rights," Trevor Matney told KXL.
He's easy to find. You can see him right across the street from City Hall, and you'll know it's Trevor Matney because he's handcuffed to a tree. And he doesn't intend on moving.
He says considering how a big a problem the city claims they are, no one has even come to talk to them. "There's not enough people that are actually coming out and talking to anybody and asking...you know hey, what could we simply compromise on? What's gonna help? The only thing we've gotten is, well we haven't really anything...So, all we've gotten is a whole lot of notices on the windows and that's about it," Matney told KXL.
Matney is not sure what the answer is to the current situation on Southwest 4th AVE near City Hall, but he knows the solution is not being moved from one place to the next.
Matney told KXL "My wish would be that people that have never been homeless before have some compassion and some understanding for the people that are. And maybe get to know some of the people down here. And maybe their stories and maybe their minds will be open to the fact of change and maybe something a lot better will come of that, versus just taking and getting rid of everybody. Cause it's really not getting rid of anything, all it's doing is moving, we're just going elsewhere."
He says it's no coincidence this is happening after the attack on the man in front of the Portland Outdoor Store. But he pleads, that the violent street kids are far different then the homeless like himself. A year and a half ago he himself had a family and multiple jobs. "A lot of this could've been avoided. A lot of the things that are going on are because people that don't talk with each other. And they just have one stereo-type, and they think that homeless people are just one way...and you know we're all people, doesn't matter what race, what ethnicity whatever, we're all people.
He also says he has a lot to lose by defending his first amendment right and protesting the mayors decision. Matney's last occupation was as an armed security guard, and depending on what he's arrested with, he could lose his concealed carry licence.