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View other events for the week of 7/25/2009
Merchants Use Cops to Suppress Tablers: Join the Protest Against Bunny's Shoes!
Date Saturday July 25
Time 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Location Details
On the sidewalk in front of Bunny's two stores on Pacific Ave. at 1349 and 1350 Pacific Ave. in downtown Santa Cruz.
Event Type Protest
Organizer/AuthorRobert Norse
Emailrnorse3@hotmail. com
Address309 Cedar PMB #14B Santa Cruz 95060
Last week Bunny's Management tried to end our tabling in front of their store by calling the police (see video at

We expect more of the same this week at 2 PM (note the new time--moved forward from 1 PM). So bring your cameras, recorders, and friends to observe police acting as agents of the merchants.

We're back offering the public the chance to support shops that support the right of homeless people to sleep--not anywhere and everywhere--but somewhere.


The pledge reads: "This business does not discriminate. We support Human Rights for the homeless community. In particular, the right to sleep at night--not anywhere and everywhere--but somewhere." [See ]


Some of the stores that have posted the Pledge, which we urge the community to spend at:

Santa Cruz City Soccer 717 Pacific
Starbucks 1335 Pacific
The Perfumer's Apprentice 1319A-B Pacific
Pollo Loco 712 Front St.
More Music 512 Front St.
Vasili's 435 Front St.
Bad Ass Coffee 1207 Pacific
Khyber Pass 810 Pacific
Firefly Cafe 131 Front St.
Godmoma's Forge, LLC 916B Soquel Ave.
Felix Kulpa Gallery 107 Elm
Cafe Bene 1101 Cedar St.
Sub Rosa Cafe 703 Pacific

Some photos of the posted pledge can be found agt

We understand the 8 week long boycott and protest has had significant impact on some downtown stores. We encourage locals to get copies of the pledge and encourage their favorite businesses to post them.


There has been no movement by the City Attorney or the Downtown Association to rescind the one-act-of-sleeping-downtown-and-you-go-to-jail Injunction secured in May against homeless musicians Anna Richardson and Miguel de Leon.

Santa Cruz has zero emergency walk-in shelter for any of its homeless population. This according to the authoritative head of the Homeless Services Center, Doug Loisel (radio

Instead the City Police and Rangers enforce the medieval MC 6.36.010a--a homeless Sleeping Ban. State Rangers enforce similar laws on the beaches and in the Lighthouse Field area.

As social services are slashed, the situation becomes more dire. A 65-year old woman contacted both Loisel and HUFF regarding safe sleeping spots where she could go in her vehicle. There are no such legal places available on public property.

This Sleeping Ban (which affects both those in vehicles and those without) will now result in jailing penalties thanks to the February ordinance changes pushed by the Downtown Association and businesses on Pacific Avenue. This new law
makes three unattended infractions is an automatic misdemeanor for which you can be jailed.


Los Angeles, San Diego, Fresno, Richmond, & Laguna Beach have overturned their homeless Sleeping Bans.

Palo Alto allows homeless people to sleep in their vehicles.

Santa Monica, Santa Barbara, and Sacramento currently face legal challenges against their Sleeping bans.

Santa Cruz is surrounded by greenbelt area, has a huge Pogonip area, and numerous parking lots and garages that could easily be used for overnight sleeping purposes. NIMBY bigotry and political cowardice are the primary obstacles.


Please report such incidents you observe or experience to HUFF at 423-4833. We are also interested in any video or audio of abusive police contacts.

New cops and "Hosts" are sharpening their claws on poor people downtown who are engaging in innocent behavior in public places (sitting, sleeping, performing, political tabling)

If you are homeless and hassled, ask the officer who demands you move if he has a legal place for you to go specifically then and there. There are attorneys who are considering taking cases to challenge the ordinance once the financial backing is available

Attorney Ed Frey is defending homeless van-dweller Sharon Paight in a case that goes to court in mid-August in Dept. 1.


Michelle Chase, the manager of Bunny's Shoes, as well as the property managers at Borders and the Palomar, and Manthri Srinath, owner of Lulu Carpenters) all contributed to a discriminatory court Injunction, granted last month by Judge Paul Burdick against Richardson and deLeon.

We respect the right of Bunny's to manage their own properties. However, the Bunnys Declaration has been used to back up police action on public property against those that have no choice.

We would prefer to place our petitioning table directly in front of Bunny's Shoes, but the new Downtown Ordinances, passed by the City Council at the urging of the Downtown Association has made that illegal (no tables within 10' of public benches).


This injunction bans Richardson and deLeon from sleeping anywhere in a park or on the sidewalk in the downtown area on pain of jail. City law additionally bans them from sleeping anywhere on public property in Santa Cruz after 11 PM throughout the night.

It has nothing to do with any kind of real criminal conduct or nuisance behavior like littering, trespassing, disturbing the peace, urinating, defecating, etc. Simply sleeping outside downtown has become an immediate jailing offense for these two. So far police have not arrested them.

The impact of the decision expands far beyond these two performers, since there are 1500-2000 homeless in Santa Cruz--the overwhelming majority of which have no legal place to sleep at night.

Homeless people still face $97 citations, police harassment, destruction of their property, and discrimination.

It is piling absurdity upon cruelty to ban sleeping downtown on pain of jail, yet allow no legal place for homeless people to sleep. MC 6.36.010 makes all nighttime sleeping illegal outside on public property already; the Injunction adds a jail penalty to the downtown area for this homeless couple.


Activists will continue presenting their Pledge on Human Rights and Harmony for merchants to display in their windows or in their stores in soldarity if they choose. So far about about 3/4 of the businesses downtown have been approached.

Businesses downtown need to hear from the community on this issue.

More discussion of this issue at


In essence we ask downtown businesses to advise the community and their customers that they no longer favor--whatever position they may have taken in the past--turning homeless people into criminals for sleeping--something over which they have no control.

Businesses that have the clarity and courage to do this should be rewarded and those that don't should be questioned.


Manthri Srinath, Lulu Carpenter's owner, has reportedly been advising his staff to turn away those who "look homeless".

Srinath was one of four downtown businessettes who made declarations, used by the city attorney, to make Sleeping a jailing offense downtown for DeLeon and Richardson. Srinath's concerned the alleged theft of five paper napkins.

More about Srinath's past discriminatory behavior at (at start) (towards end) (at start)


More flyers should shortly be available. We encourage folks to download them and distribute them widely as well as posting them on other websites.

Past flyers:

More info on this situation at

Added to the calendar on Friday Jul 10th, 2009 9:04 AM
Added to the calendar on Friday Jul 24th, 2009 7:17 PM
Listed below are the latest comments about this post.
These comments are submitted anonymously by website visitors.
CorrectionRobert NorseTuesday Jan 19th, 2010 8:21 AM
What a waste of my timeSum DimSaturday Aug 22nd, 2009 3:16 PM
LOL!!!Sum DimFriday Aug 21st, 2009 3:04 PM
Back to Lulu'sRobert NorseFriday Aug 21st, 2009 11:24 AM
I dunno...Sum DimMonday Aug 17th, 2009 2:58 AM
Not potential, and not nimbyNo "where"Wednesday Aug 5th, 2009 11:58 AM
Campgrounds have problems; bigotry creates moreRobert NorseWednesday Aug 5th, 2009 6:09 AM
Chicken and the eggNo "where"Saturday Aug 1st, 2009 4:11 PM
Distinguish the right to sleep from unseemly public drug abuse.Robert NorseMonday Jul 27th, 2009 7:11 PM
No wayNo "where"Monday Jul 27th, 2009 5:29 PM
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