Non-residential residents facing an uncertain future after voting for Proposal B


Austin, Texas — Many voters in the Capitol have heard about the heated topic of the city’s homelessness.

During the May elections, residents voted in favor of Proposal B — 57% to 43% to revive the ban on public camps lifted in July 2019.

The “Non-Sit or Lie Ordinance” makes camping in public places illegal and limits bread handling in certain areas. The camp ban is expected to come into effect on May 11, and some non-residents are confused by strict deadlines.

54-year-old Dawn Howell has been homeless for over seven years. She lives in an under-elevated homeless camp near downtown Austin.

“It’s really terrible because they came out and brought us a temporary toilet. They set us up and then they cut us off. They made us comfortable here. After that, we’re throwing us away, “says Howell.

She heard the news that Prop B would pass early Sunday morning. As the news spread throughout her community, many became desperate and they didn’t know where to go.

Howell tells Spectrum News 1 about homeless camps. (Spectrum News 1 / Lakisha Lemons)

“Even those in the apartment take 30 days. They give us 10. We have to go somewhere and get everything in 10 days,” Howell explains. I will. “They made the homeless … homeless. If you think about it, that’s what they did. They made the homeless, the homeless.”

Howell feels that when she leaves a camp that has long been called home, caseworkers and volunteers who usually help her with services and resources may not be able to find her. Howell says he was talking to a caseworker about housing assistance. She fears that her chances at the shelter will be lost if she cannot be contacted by the shelter by May 11.

Howell hugs volunteers. (Spectrum News 1 / Lakisha Lemons)

“They know where to find me here, but I’m not going here right now and I don’t know where to go every day. I don’t know where to sleep,” says Howell.

The city of Austin recently purchased two hotels that provide housing for people who are experiencing homelessness. Earlier this week, the city council also resolved to proceed with plans to accommodate 3,000 homeless people over the next three years.

Non-residential residents facing an uncertain future after voting for Proposal B

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