Initiative 300 is a flash point for Denver’s upcoming municipal election

Homeless shot from Westword Screen Shot 2018-11-23 at 10.03.31 AM

“Municipal election” sounds so, well, dry, like a snoozy civics class. But if you live here, casting your vote is when you get to have a voice.

There are so many choices on May 7, when Denver voters can select a new (or not new) mayor, new (or not new) city council persons, other new (or not new) city officials, and the OK to allow the use and possession of psilocybin mushrooms by adults 21 and older. That is Initiative 301.

But then, there is Initiative 300, which would overturn the city’s urban camping ban ordinance that affects homeless individuals. Instead, 300 would allow people to sleep, sit, and eat in public spaces, which is quite condensed.

Tempers can flare over this, which has led to two organizations on different sides of the fence:  supporters of what is termed the Right to Survive, or Denver Together, which does not support a change to the law.

There is more to this, but it’s better to offer context and details via the explanations of reports found at the links below.

The only forum I have seen on Initiative 300 was a debate presented by Denver Decides. This series of forums was organized by the League of Women Voters of Denver; the Inter-Neighborhood Cooperation, which is the umbrella for the city’s registered neighborhood organizations; Historic Denver, and the city of Denver’s Channel 8.   It seems sort of sterile watching that forum online because you’re not there, but the presenters made their cases, and helped explain the details.

I know that in the coming weeks, there will be more stories on this initiative, but recently there have been some really good pieces on this topic. Those are found at the first two links to stories from Westword and Colorado Politics. The rest of the links lead to a Denver Post story related to fundraising, to the websites for Right to Survive and for Together Denver, the forum on Initiative 300 organized by Denver Decides, and then an overall link to all of the Denver Decides forums.

Finally, a story in the San Francisco Chronicle raised tempers on a plan to build a Navigation Center for the homeless on the Embarcadero south of the Bay Bridge. The meeting was held last month, but you can still feel the steam coming out of your computer.

https://www.westword.com/news/denvers-right-to-survive-initiative-raises-questions-not-easily-put-to-rest-11292222

https://www.coloradopolitics.com/news/cover-story-debate-over-denver-s-streets-as-homelessness-grips/article_25857eac-4f1d-11e9-906e-ef2f329a6df2.html?fbclid=IwAR0N9z1VQBVg1wc-fXox_8fxokyswD03SZTIEo_tPDPirnAFjrHbPLFQAiU

https://www.denverpost.com/2019/03/09/homeless-camping-ban-quickly-becoming-one-of-denvers-most-expensive-political-fights/

http://www.denverrighttosurvive.org

https://www.togetherdenver.com

https://www.denvergov.org/content/denvergov/en/denver-decides/ballot-issues/InitiatedOrdinance300.html

https://www.denvergov.org/content/denvergov/en/denver-decides.html

https://www.sfchronicle.com/bayarea/article/Crowded-meetings-on-new-SF-Navigation-Center-13684149.php

 

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