DENVER - Authorities worked to clear more homeless camps in the Ballpark neighborhood Monday morning – the fourth such sweep in recent months.
Denver Police helped Denver Public Works conduct the sweeps, which happened in the area of Park Avenue West and Lawrence Street.
This was near the site of sweeps that happened two weeks ago.
During that sweep, notices were distributed telling people to clear their belongings off the sidewalks. On Monday, Cathy Alderman with the Colorado Coalition of the Homeless says there wasn't a warning about the most recent sweep.
"A lot of people congregate outside the shelter areas," Alderman said. "Now that they are engaging in more enforcement, people around the shelter spaces are being cleared out.
"Some may be waiting to get into the shelters, some just for a space space -- they feel there's no safe space for them, because there aren't any other options."
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The first cleanup of this nature was in March, when Denver Mayor Michael Hancock declared the area too unsanitary and unsafe. There was another sweep in September a little farther north.
The city says it’s trying to connect the homeless with services.
The homeless and their advocates say the sweeps violating their Constitutional rights – a subject that’s become the target of a recent lawsuit against the city.
Alderman says the sweeps aren't going to solve the larger problem.
"Moving people along isn't going to solve the problems of people not having a place to sleep," she said.
Alderman says the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless has had ongoing conversations with the city, but no specific talks about the sweeps themselves.
She calls them "extremely disruptive, and not a solution."
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