11/10: Post “Urban Camping” Ban Homeless Surveyor Training

When: Saturday, November 10, 1-3pm
Deer Pile (13th and Sherman – above City O City)

Denver Homeless Out Loud, a coalition of Denver residents and organizations working hand-in-hand with and for the homeless to challenge their criminalization in our city, is preparing to conduct a survey. The “Urban Camping” Ban Survey will gather field data on how Denver’s recent “Urban Camping” Ban is affecting the lives of homeless individuals in Denver.

The surveying will be kicking off soon and we are looking for people interested and willing to be surveyors! Surveyors need to be willing to dedicate volunteer time to surveying homeless individuals at least in November and potentially into December. Surveyors need to be able to set aside bias concerning personal opinions about the “Urban Camping” Ban in order to conduct objective surveys on the effects of this ban on homeless.

We will be holding a Surveyor Training on Saturday November 10th, 1-3pm, at the Deer Pile (13th and Sherman – above City O City). All persons interested in being a surveyor are welcome!

Below is the statement of intent for this ‘Urban Camping” Ban homeless survey.

Denver Homeless Out Loud team

Over 158 street checks for unauthorized camping impacting 386 members of the homeless community occurred in the first four months since the “Urban Camping” Ban went into effect on May 28, 2012. The Denver Police Department provided these statistics in an update to the Denver City Council on October 9. Though we know the official data regarding numbers of contacts between policy and homeless individuals, Denver stakeholders do not have data from members of the homeless community regarding how the ban is affecting their lives This survey project will allow members of the homeless community to share the impact of the ordinance on their lives.

The survey will be drafted and conducted by a coalition of homeless individuals and experienced researchers and will be conducted by trained volunteers among people on the streets who identify as homeless or houseless.

Trained interviewers will survey Members of Denver’s homeless community regarding such things as:

  • Frequency and nature of police contacts with homeless individuals
  • Result of those police contacts
  • Patterns of shelter use or non-use
  • Nature of services being offered to homeless individual
  • Whether homeless survey respondents have changed their behavior following the ban, such as by changing sleeping arrangements, daily routines, service-access, or areas of town frequented
  • Whether homeless people feel more or less safe since the ban, and why
  • Personal stories regarding experiences on the street that might shed light on the implementation of this new law.

The completed surveys will be analyzed in a report produced by University of Colorado Denver professors. This report will provide field-level data regarding how the urban camping ban is being implemented, how it is being experienced in the homeless community, how well the ban is achieving its aims, and possible problems or challenges associated with the implementation of the law. The results of this survey will provide valuable information as all parties go forward in understanding the effects of the law, and in informing future service-delivery plans or even possible legislative changes.


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