Last week after reading the Atlanta Progressive News articleon the bulldozing of a homeless tent city on the south underpass of I-20 and I-85, the Atlanta Economic Justice of the American Friends Service Committee had to respond.
Many in the city have seen the tent city, which has steadily grown over the last year. After spending the day with the community last Sunday I learned that they have been bulldozed several times in the last year and police have arrested folks.
Many of the folks that live down there have lost jobs in the last 12 months and ran out of money, without a safety net they lost their housing. I’ve been down there several times since and it’s clear that they have a real community. People in the tent city seem to get along very well, describing the their community as a family.
The city and the GDOT continue to clear out the tent city, and the community members continue to set their camp back up. When I asked why folks keep setting up the camp they all gave the same answer, they have nowhere else to go. With a riding homeless population the city’s shelters are busting at the seams, and many shelters are extremely temporary.
AFSC plans to continue to engage with the community and pull in key partners to help address the needs of folks in the tent city.
Right now we are asking that folks in the community donate the following:
*Flashlights and batteries
*Heat packs (the king you put in shoes of gloves)
If you can make a donation please bring it to 60 walton, Atlanta 30303 between 10am-4pm or email firstname.lastname@example.org.