Letters, March 30
How can you accelerate something that is way behind already?? People over 65 were approved over a month ago at which time I tried for an appointment after the announcement of 1000 vaccinations a day. Got an appointment over a month out in April. That is over 30,000 vaccinations before I could even get an appointment. So all they are accelerating is the eligibility, which does nothing if they can’t speed up the vaccination process by providing more vaccine and more sites to get vaccinated. All handled very poorly particularly in Oregon and specifically Jackson County. No wonder we were in the extreme risk group for so long.
The recent federal court rulings around homelessness have been very clear in their intent to protect this vulnerable population from the threats of criminal charges or citations for basic life-sustaining activities.
The proposed Medford city ordinance exploits minor exceptions allowed in these rulings to push forward an aggressive policy to restrict the use of tents and allow broader tools for citing and arresting these economic refugees. This ordinance ultimately inverts the intent of these court rulings.
The Medford City Council should take the time to read these rulings and consider their actual intent. They were meant to protect our fellow citizens and encourage cities to find authentic solutions to the crisis of homelessness, not allow cities to expand their ability to further criminalize poverty.
As stated by Magistrate Clarke in a recent ruling against the city of Grants Pass, “The Court reminds governing bodies of the importance of empathy and thinking outside the box. We must try harder to protect our most vulnerable citizens. Let us not forget that homeless individuals are citizens just as much as those fortunate enough to have a secure living space.”