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Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Church Punts on Tent City 3

posted by on November 6 at 15:28 PM

posted by news intern Brian Slodysko

Seattle School Board candidate Steve Sundquist is drawing negative attention, from his opponent Maria Ramirez anyway, for his role in his West Seattle church’s decision to deny Tent City 3’s request to set up in their parking lot. Tent City 3 is the roving homeless shelter that houses up to 100 people for three month stints in parking lots around the Seattle metro area.

Ramirez, a community-oriented education activist, says Sundquist—who had a role in the decision as the moderator of the Fauntleroy United Church of Christ’s council—is being uncharitable as we head into the holiday season.

“It does seem a bit elitist—and I hate to use that word,” Ramirez said.

While Sundquist says he stands behind the church’s decision, he thinks part of what is going on is an attempt at politicking by his opponent. He said the church is in the middle of a capital campaign and doesn’t have the time to take on a project like Tent City 3. He then counted off a number of homeless outreach programs the church supports.

After preliminary discussion, the council decided in mid-October to deal with the issue at a later date. According to Sundquist, this means the Church will have another discussion amongst its members before deciding if they will engage the surrounding community in discussions. I guess they made a decision to not make a decision. The church’s letter to the community can be found here.

West Seattle Blog reports the church was flatly asked by neighbors to not host Tent City 3.

Sundquist admitted some church neighbors are opposed to Tent City setting up, but insisted their opposition was not a factor in the council’s decision.

“This particular thing was a discussion within the church—not with the neighbors.”

RSS icon Comments

1

people who hate tent city are douchebags. period.

Posted by adrian | November 6, 2007 4:08 PM
2

Lame. Tent City's few visits to St. Joe's up here Capitol Hill-way have been uneventful. The only impact to the neighborhood was more people riding the #12 bus which is a positive impact, no?

Posted by jseattle | November 6, 2007 4:18 PM
3

I don't think they hate tent city.

I just think that if I lived in the suburbs I wouldn't want hundreds of homeless people wandering around my neighborhood all of a sudden. What's wrong with that?

Posted by Tom | November 6, 2007 4:21 PM
4

The real problem here is not where to put a tent city, but that there is a tent city at all. What the fuck!?! Wasn't the city committed to "ending homelessness" and all that, with a plan and everything? Is a tent city the best we can do as a community?

Posted by Westside forever | November 6, 2007 4:27 PM
5

when tent city was in Kirkland they broke into a lot of peoples cars ripping off CD's and stereo's.

Posted by irl500girl | November 6, 2007 4:32 PM
6

Sundquist stands by his church's decision, but does that mean that he helped reach that decision? What precisely was his stance when the church council was mulling the decision?

Posted by keshmeshi | November 6, 2007 4:47 PM
7

Just want to point out that Tent City 4 has been staying in Issaquah (about a mile from my house) for four months now without incident.

Not to confuse the anti-homeless, anti-suburb and anti-eastside arguments with facts.

Posted by Big Sven | November 6, 2007 5:12 PM
8

I agree with everything jseattle said.

Tent City's two (more?) visits to St. Joseph's Church parking lot at 19th & Aloha hve been totally uneventful. The parish had outreach meetings the first time (2004?) and an ice-cream social for the neighbors at Tent City when they first arrived.

Never heard of a SINGLE problem arising from their two visits.

"One man gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want. [Proverbs 11-24]"

Posted by Andrew Taylor | November 6, 2007 5:31 PM
9

I agree with everything jseattle said.

Tent City's two (more?) visits to St. Joseph's Church parking lot at 19th & Aloha hve been totally uneventful. The parish had outreach meetings the first time (2004?) and an ice-cream social for the neighbors at Tent City when they first arrived.

Never heard of a SINGLE problem arising from their two visits.

"One man gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want. [Proverbs 11-24]"

Posted by Andrew Taylor | November 6, 2007 5:31 PM
10

I call bullshit on irl500girl @ 5...cite some actual reports on this if ya got 'em because this contradicts virtually every story that I've ever seen on how tent city enforces their "good neighbor" policies.

Also, any regrets SECB on your endorsement of this "straightlaced" businessman over MR?

Posted by gnossos | November 6, 2007 7:33 PM

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