Press release from BeLoved Asheville:
The Homeless Voice project of BeLoved Asheville will gather at Pritchard Park at 2:00 p.m. Tuesday to make public data concerning the arrests and citations of potential homeless people.
This data was obtained through public records requests in partnership with Code for Asheville. The data reveals an unsettling pattern of criminalizing the homeless that is a national trend in how to handle the problem of homelessness.
BeLoved is sharing this data in conjunction with the launch Tuesday of a national campaign entitled “Houses Not Handcuffs” run by the National Coalition of the Homeless. It is our hope that by making this data public we can further the good work already being done in Asheville to end homelessness. We know that a criminal record only makes it more difficult for people to obtain jobs and the housing that they so desperately need. It is our hope that we can better utilize taxpayer money by diverting those funds to support people moving from the streets and shelters into housing.
We call on our city leaders and residents to work with us knowing that homelessness is a public health emergency and not a public safety issue.
This press conference is one of many events that BeLoved Asheville is holding for National Hunger and Homeless Awareness Week.
BeLoved Asheville is an intentional community of people on the streets and margins of our city working to end homelessness, poverty, and prejudice. BeLoved’s Homeless Voice Project is about amplifying the voice of people who are living on the streets and in shelters in issues concerning homelessness and the housing crisis in Asheville.