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Debate over Denver's streets: As homelessness grips the city, voters ponder scrapping camping ban

If enacted, Denver authorities could not "enforce any ordinance... that limits, prohibits or penalizes the rights secured by this ordinance," including the city's camping ban on public property.

DENVER — Take a walk along any street in downtown Denver, and chances are good that on any given day you’ll come face to face in vivid and sometimes tragic detail with the extent of the city’s grinding and intractable homelessness problem.

A man sprawls unconscious on a sidewalk outside the Denver Performing Arts Complex.

Another man reaches into a trash bin on 17th Street, pulls out a container and begins eating the leftover sandwich.

A woman sleeps beneath a teal-colored blanket on a cold spring day in Civic Center Park. Later she rises and heads over to the bus station, her blanket trailing behind her like a tattered robe. On the 16th Street shuttle bus, she coughs a hacking cough.

This is the reality of homelessness in Denver in 2019.

Against this sad urban backdrop, Denver voters are set to decide a groundbreaking referendum that would repeal the city’s ban on homeless camping and allow people to live on the street.

It's called Initiated Ordinance 300, one of several measures on the city's May 7 ballot. Backers refer to it as the "right to survive initiative."

Read more at Colorado Politics: https://on9news.tv/2GbFIQj.

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