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Braving the Downpour: Freedom SleepOut #26 Seeks Shelter
Date Tuesday January 05
Time 5:00 PM - 5:00 AM
Location Details
Next to the City Council chambers at 809 Center St. and under the eaves of the nearby offices
Event Type Protest
Organizer/AuthorToby Nixon (posted by Norse)
Emailtobynixon [at]
Homeless Advocacy and Action Coalition activist Toby Nixon will continue the weekly Freedom SleepOut's in front of Santa Cruz City Hall. He has invited Berkeley activists to join the protest this Tuesday.

Berkeley's City Council recently passed anti-homeless laws (see "Letter to Berkeley: You Are Being Scammed by Your City Council." at

In response community supporters of the unhoused (both those living outside and those sleeping indoors) formed Liberty City outside Berkeley's City Hall for two weeks until driven away by armed police. (See Carol Denney's satirical treatment of the fencing off of the area on p. 1 of the January issue of the Pepper Spray Times at ).

Berkeley activists familiar with this controversy have agreed to speak on the issue of Urban Shield--a police-bolstering program that they say is being used to terrorize homeless folks in Berkeley. The event is scheduled for 6 PM in front of the City Hall chambers.

With rains slated throughout the week, Toby has put out a call for tents, tarps, blankets, cups, and bowls as well as other forms of support (food, hot drinks, video/audio,).

Folks will be sheltering themselves under the eaves of the City Hall buildings. At 10 PM, when that activity becomes "illegal", protest participants will decide where to go to stay dry and warm.

Mayor Cynthia Mathews declined to support opening empty public buildings, even simple warming centers staffed by volunteers. Other nearby cities such as San Jose have not only opened warming centers, but are discussing supporting actual encampments in the face of predicted harsh El Nino winter weather.

Mathews earned notoriety in 2009 for her costly attacks on Calvary Episcopal pastor Joel Miller for his once-a-week meal program at the Red Church. The Monday evening meal--which Miller still provides--happens across from property Mathews owns between the Nickelodeon and Jack's Hamburgers on Lincoln St.

Her campaign to defrock Pastor Miller cost him tens of thousands of dollars, but was ultimately turned back. See "Cynthia Mathews--Scrooge for the Season" at

She has been a leading voice in pushing anti-homeless actions ranging from Move-Along laws, Permit-Only parking, support for the anti-homeless Sleeping Ban, police-initiated Stay-Away orders, and the latest "no parking for homeless RV's" law passed this fall.

Councilmember Don Lane's proposed removal of some sections of the Sleeping Ban from the Camping Ordinance are slated to be unveiled Monday January 4th, according to privileged insiders who were graced with an audience last week.

These reportedly include excluding sleeping at night on public property, under a structure, or under a blanket--unless you're in your car when it may remain "illegal".

Lane's initial discussion of this issue began in October at . He has made no further public pronouncements since.

"Homeless Activists Maintain Protests, Continue to Sleep at Santa Cruz City Hall" at
"Cold Sidewalk & Warm Spirits: Freedom SleepOut #25" at
"Driving Out the Mosquitoes: Making Homelessness Illegal" at
"Council Member Cynthia Chase Refuses Dialogue on Homeless Voting Record" at

Toby Nixon's Homeless Advocacy and Action Coalition facebook page is at .
Added to the calendar on Sunday Jan 3rd, 2016 7:55 PM
§Facebook Page
by Robert Norse Monday Jan 4th, 2016 12:42 AM
Steve Pleich has created an event page at .
§Meeting Time for Freedom Sleeper Supporters 5 PM February 5th
by Robert Norse Monday Jan 4th, 2016 12:50 PM
...under the eaves of City Hall near the Council Chambers. Bring your galoshes and umbrellas. Rowboats optional. This was clarified by Toby this morning.

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