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Tent City residents being evicted Tomorrow, March 24, ACLU to try to intervene

by Lady Madonna Monday, Mar. 24, 2008 at 7:29 PM

The majority of Tent City or "Bushville" residents are being evicted tomorrow based on ties to Ontario. Please come out and make sure no police brutality ensues.

Tent City residents ...
tentcitysign2.jpg, image/jpeg, 1367x774

03-23-08 Tent City, CA It was Easter Sunday, a holy day. I was with two activists and we were driving to what the newspapers call "Tent City" but local activists have dubbed "Bushville,” a community where homeless camped out in a dusty lot in Ontario, CA right before the railroad tracks on Jefferson St. and Cucamonga Ave. There were no other volunteers there, many of them wary of the new regulations that would begin to be enforced on Monday, March 24. Among these new rules were that any persons doing "drop offs" must have a permit. The three of us talked to a resident and he helped us set up a table to place the provisions we brought on.

Among them were socks, water, clothing, maxi pads, shampoo, body wash, macaroni and cheese and canned goods. People started gathering around the table, taking what they wanted from it. Everyone seemed to know each other by name. The man who helped us was not wearing a shirt on this hot day and suggested that one of the women who were looking through the clothing wear some shorts and show off her nice legs. She didn't take them. She was wearing jeans and a t-shirt and chose a couple shirts, placed them in a bag with a bottle of water, thanked us and walked away.

He said that in the morning there was an Easter Sunday service and there were tamales, adding that we should come back next week for Cesar Chavez Day. A lady drove by and asked us if we had transmission fluid. I told her we didn't and she drove away.

There was a line of six port-a-potties, three of which were marked in permanent marker, “Women Only”. On the back of these was a paper saying that Bikers for Christ would be holding a lunch the 22nd.

The encampment was fraught with tension; some of the people we spoke to wore white wristbands, some wore none. The wristbands were a new development of Tent City; people were being forced to provide proof that they had "ties to Ontario". Those that could prove it wore blue wristbands, those that were in the process of getting proof wore orange, and those that had to leave wore white. We left the table and took a walk around the small community. The one activist, Rockero, who had previously been there, said that there were a lot more people the last time, a lot more tents. There were new rules that starting Monday would evict most of the people. There would be no children under 18, no pets, parolees, or people not from Ontario. As we walked, a couple of women asked us if we were looking for somebody.

"No" said Rockero. "We are worried about what's going to happen tomorrow." "So are we" said one of the women as she pushed a stroller of personal items. "We got kicked out." "Where are you going to go?" Rockero asked. "I don't know. The streets. We might park nearby until we get kicked out again because there is nowhere to go. Where do you go when you get kicked out of a homeless camp?" I asked the two women if it was scary at night for them. “For some people, yeah, it’s really scary. It was fine, but now it’s vicious. There were a lot of fights last night.” The other woman added, “you know, just because we’re not from here doesn’t mean we’re not homeless.”

We continued walking, heading toward our car. There were two men standing in front of a large truck near the car, one wearing a hat bearing an emblem that read “Vietnam Veteran.” Rockero asked them if they have been part of the relief effort and the man without the hat who referred to himself as “Turtle” replied that they had been assisting Tent City since the beginning and were told that their ides would become laws.

“Then the cops came and (he gestured as if tearing up a piece of paper). They are running things now. They police them.” “And police look at them like they are all criminals.” Rockero added. Turtle replied, “All they do is recycle and come back with the money. But if we can’t drop off, or if the churches stop bringing them food, that’s when they’ll start thieving and breaking the law. But they need to survive. We’re all human. They shouldn’t be treated this way. And you know, I've been interviewed by journalists from all different countries, they’re trying to figure out how a world superpower who aids other countries has this (he points at Tent City) in our backyard.” I thanked him for talking to us. He told us to come back on Monday when the people start getting evicted and the ACLU comes to try to extend the eviction. He said that when the ACLU is here that the police will be nice, but once they leave, they will start treating them like garbage again.

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Many people do not want to give up their pets.

by Lady Madonna Monday, Mar. 24, 2008 at 7:29 PM

Many people do not w...
dog_park_signs.jpg, image/jpeg, 2592x1728

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Notice the White Wristband.

by Lady Madonna Monday, Mar. 24, 2008 at 7:29 PM

Notice the White Wri...
man.jpg, image/jpeg, 1728x2592

This man was very nice and agreed to let me take a photo of him in the new jacket we gave him. He will no longer be allowed at Tent City after the 24th due to the new regulations.

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Not all homeless are from Ontario or Los Angeles.

by Lady Madonna Monday, Mar. 24, 2008 at 7:29 PM

Not all homeless are...
pleaserethink.jpg, image/jpeg, 2592x1728

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The restrooms

by Lady Madonna Monday, Mar. 24, 2008 at 7:29 PM

The restrooms...
tentcityrestroom.jpg, image/jpeg, 2592x1728

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The only shower.

by Lady Madonna Monday, Mar. 24, 2008 at 7:29 PM

The only shower....
shower.jpg, image/jpeg, 400x566

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Tent City

by Lady Madonna Monday, Mar. 24, 2008 at 7:29 PM

Tent City...
tentcity.jpg, image/jpeg, 2592x1728

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Tent City 2

by Lady Madonna Monday, Mar. 24, 2008 at 7:29 PM

Tent City 2...
tentcity2.jpg, image/jpeg, 2592x1728

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Tent City 3

by Lady Madonna Monday, Mar. 24, 2008 at 7:29 PM

Tent City 3...
tentcity3.jpg, image/jpeg, 2592x1728

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The notice of eviction

by Lady Madonna Monday, Mar. 24, 2008 at 7:29 PM

The notice of evicti...
tentcitynotice.jpg, image/jpeg, 2592x1728

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Women Only restrooms

by Lady Madonna Monday, Mar. 24, 2008 at 7:29 PM

Women Only restrooms...
womenonly.jpg, image/jpeg, 2592x1728

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