.

We Want Your Sit-Lie Questions and Concerns

Berkeley Patch will host a live panel discussion on Measure S Monday at 11 a.m. Tune in for our live broadcast streaming from our homepage or check back for a recorded version of the discussion.

Berkeley Patch plans to moderate an online panel discussion on Measure S, a Nov. 6 ballot measure that would ban sitting on sidewalks in Berkeley's commercial districts between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m.

Patch's discussion will be held Monday, Nov. 5 at 11 a.m., and we want to know which questions you want asked during the talk.

*Submit your questions in the comments section below.

Tallie Spiller November 04, 2012 at 04:26 PM
The Yes on S campaign has spent over $100,000 to pass this measure which would criminalize the peaceful use of public space. Due to their misleading literature many Berkeley residents believe this Measure will help homeless youth receive services, when in fact the opposite is true, under the law those unable to pay the fines would be prevented from receiving county services. After the election, how will the city of Berkeley work to expand services and address the problem of homelessness in a meaningful way? Would those funding this measure be willing to help create the services their literature implies we already have?
Mary November 04, 2012 at 09:57 PM
If they are from out of town, they should be returned to where they came from. If they cannot be returned to the parents, for example, if the parents are addicts, then they should be placed in foster homes there, not here.
Mary November 04, 2012 at 10:02 PM
I voted for it. I think our city has gone much too far with this idea of tolerance. It seems like only the street people have rights. Who is more important, these street people, or the long-term residents who work, pay taxes, raise children, run businesses, etc.
nancy johnson November 05, 2012 at 04:15 AM
What services are we pretending to have? Is there a great spot we can provide in one of the empty stores all over town? A warm place with food, and hot chocolate? Maybe a milkshake and a sandwich? What's wrong with us? Send them home to whom? Somebody who cant or wont care for them? Are there people just waiting to offer nurturing care for somebody else's kid? Why not? Could be your kid someday.Not in your religion? Not in your morality? Not in your wallet? OH. thats it.
nancy johnson November 05, 2012 at 04:16 AM
terrible mean talk
nancy johnson November 05, 2012 at 04:17 AM
if they sit down.
Kristin kilian Lobos November 05, 2012 at 07:48 AM
I grew up in Berkeley. The street kids are drug addicted. The recovery community that I know, as well as Options recovery here in town are all for measure S. If you think these are the kids who don't have families than you don't understand addiction or the system. I had to find out ALL about it the hard way. My own beautiful child was out there for a short time. No one seams to notice how many young people have cell phones. Who do you think is paying? These are kids who's families have tried for years to get them into treatment. I hear the stories in my parent support groups. And I talk to the young people. The biggest lie in town is that these are poor kids or that the parents are on drugs. I have seen parents on drugs plenty of them. The kids can stay home and use. Why leave? This town is just enabling and making our town unsafe for all the children. We need treatment and healing. So families can be reunited. Some of the street kids even live in wealthy homes in the Berkeley Hills. Come on Berkeley this is the shadow side! Look at it!
Camille Peterson November 05, 2012 at 07:21 PM
What few have commented on is the number of people who have lost their jobs because of these people who sit on the sidewalks and entertain themselves by harassing passers-by. I know of two businesses-- one on Telegraph and one on Shattuck-- that are now gone because of this lingering problem and everyone who worked there now unemployed. The No on S folks seem to ignore these human tragedies. And why is it apparently OK for these no on S folks for people to die on the sidewalks? I have personally known a couple of these people. And current laws are sufficient? Ask a police officer; you will get a totally different picture. Current laws are insufficient. For the sake of small mom-and-pop businesses, and for those who are dying-- literally!-- vote yes on S!
Bob Offer-Westort November 05, 2012 at 07:27 PM
Are businesses gone because of a few kids on the sidewalks, or are they shutting down because commercial rents are unrealistic, the parking scene is untenable, and Telegraph and Downtown don't have the necessary anchor businesses to draw student customers? Are we really to believe that the numerous social service providers who oppose Measure S don't care about the health of people who live outside? Everyone agrees that people are healthier when they have housing. But jail isn't housing.
Bob Offer-Westort November 05, 2012 at 07:33 PM
And no one's okay with people dying on the sidewalk. I doubt even you and John Caner are comfortable with that. You know perfectly well that opponents of Measure S believe that citations result in barriers to accessing housing and prolong homelessness. You may disagree with them about this, but don't impugn the motives of the ACLU, the 52 faith leaders who have opposed Measure S, and the people who run the shelters and youth programs that we have.
Mary November 05, 2012 at 08:30 PM
This is a reply to Bob Offer-Westort's first comment. There are far more than "a few kids on the sidewalk" - panhandlers, homeless and pseudohomeless, mental cases, drunks, obnoxious teenagers (I don't mean to malign all teenagers, but Berkeley certainly has some of the worst), and on and on and on. Certainly the high rents and the lack of parking are factors that hurt businesses, but many businesses manage to survie and even prosper in other high-rent areas with limited parking. Certainly the amount of problematic street behavior keeps a lot of customers away and is at least part of the reason why there are no anchor department stores, and why many businesses have pulled out.
Chris Cook November 05, 2012 at 11:54 PM
That's a shame--all the evidence has shown that sit-lie doesn't work. It doesn't help merchants, shoppers, public safety or homeless people. That's what the facts show. Also Berkeley city facts show zero connection b/t homeless people and business slow-down. None. Those are the facts. I urge you and others to stop blaming homeless folks for these problems, even if you don't like how they look or smell. They are people, too. You've got this all upside down: homeless people are given no rights or respect--constantly harassed by police and scapegoated in comments like this. They are people too. Vote No on S--not only wrong, but totally ineffective and waste of taxpayer money and police time.
1776peace November 06, 2012 at 06:02 AM
Its police discretion! And you know how that can go. This means you have to look like an elite well dressed individual- be careful not to wear a hood if its cold or not to shave or any form of clothing or dress that may be discerned as an undesireable. Racial profiling ? Hmmn? think about that too.
1776peace November 06, 2012 at 06:12 AM
Why I am not voting for Measure S and boycotting all businesses supporting it. Dear Mayor of Berkeley and City Council It is apparent that The Berkeley Chamber of Commerce and other Private interests have some huge funding to spend on a very costly ballot initiative that will not solve the core problems of: a) Homelessness b) mental health care for individuals on the streets It is well understood and documented --as has been in San Francisco (and other cities around the U.S.) that Sit Not Lie Ordinances costs the cities more in dollars without achieving positive outcomes and the repetitiveness of violations have not stopped. The problem moves on within city boundaries to other areas. I am highly disappointed in my Mayor and City Council for not properly tackling the roots of this issue as described. Leadership calls for engaging the private sector in creating a public-private sector solution that can work in a small city such as ours. see part 2 next post
1776peace November 06, 2012 at 06:13 AM
Part 2 The money spent on this ballot initiative, subsequent enactment, enforcement and other related costs are wasted taxpayer funds that could instead be matched with private grants and corporate sponsorship (i.e., Bayer , or Real Estate associations, Developer & investment LLC's, and community and faith based groups, etc.) to contribute toward a (for example) a re-habbing and opening part of the Andronico's on Telegraph Ave. as a multi-service Homeless Shelter ( for youth?) .This could happen with the exact same effort, $'s and pushing that is being put into an ordinance and all this could instead be channeled into obtaining private grants and utilizing government stimulus funds for a real positive public benefit outcome. see conclusion next post
1776peace November 06, 2012 at 06:14 AM
Conclusion: Note these stimulus funds were available years ago-- and The City of Berkeley could have chosen to turn abandoned buildings into service centers, day shelters and rehabbing existing abandoned homes (Habitat for Humanity, etc.). Instead, we have chosen avenues that divide – such as whether or not the number of City Commissions or Comissioners should be cut back or eliminated and other focus on distracting and polarizing issues that do not take care of problems facing us as a community. If The Berkeley City Council approves this ballot initiative, they are in fact washing their hands of the problem and caving into special well-funded interests that are further criminalizing poverty and the mental health conditions of a few people on the streets.
1776peace November 06, 2012 at 06:15 AM
On Mon, Jun 11, 2012 at 3:09 PM, Mary Rose Kaczorowski <mrkaczorowski@gmail.com> wrote: Turning around lives of the homeless http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-18364972 By Duncan Kennedy BBC News, Sydney June 11, 2012 A project helping homeless in a Sydney suburb is claiming impressive results, by challenging the notion that people living on the streets need to find the help themselves. Beginning in 2007, The Michael Project was a three-year Mission Australia initiative that aimed to help homeless men in Sydney to improve their lives. This integrated model, generously funded by a private donor, linked housing with care and support to help the men work on their overall wellbeing. Putting a roof over someone’s head is not enough to break the cycle of homelessness, so The Michael Project provided intensive “wrap-around” support services tailored to the individual’s needs – be they dental, psychological, medical, social or vocational. Importantly, this support was provided immediately, as and when it was needed.
1776peace November 06, 2012 at 06:20 AM
This city has gone to far in tolerance of non- resident crooked landlords and high rents. Every city now has homelessness.. with sky high rents where are people going to live?
1776peace November 06, 2012 at 06:25 AM
We have failed our youth- where are the jobs for them ? Has anyone tried getting a min. wage job and paying rent on that in Berkeley? Those saying that street people are a problem have no idea what the challenges are for these people on the street. How inhumane - For a so called Christain Country we have become so repugnant of the poor and forlorn? For shame!
1776peace November 06, 2012 at 06:29 AM
I walk everyday around Downtown and around Telegraph Ave. i am never harrassed. I am asked kindly for help with food. Never harrassed. If some one asking for help is considered harrassment for shame on you for by the Grace of the Creator that someday could be you or your realtive who you may not have seen in years or worse yet your child or mother or father. Walk in someone else shoes before you judge someone.
1776peace November 06, 2012 at 06:38 AM
The economic facts are that business sales dropped in all districts in Berkeley due to the economic downturn and not due to street people. Businesses are shuttered because the leases are not renewed,,,it happened to Amandas, Tullys etc. the higher and higher rents demanded by landlords are the problem. Think about it-- if rents were lowered even by 2% and that money be allowed to flow back into the local economy? Stop buying into the rental ponzi schemes..these are not local mom and pop inlaws landlords. these are investment schemes held by inestment groups demanding higher returns. Holding land and letting it appreciate and taking advantage of 'the market" is not service to the community! Its greed! It doesn't take hard labor to accomplaish this. Take a real estate class with developers-- they teach you the loopholes and how to avoid taxes and how to change zoning for properties . I am not making this up. Look what happened with the Tenants in Common debacle a few years ago in Berkeley-- how much rental housing we lost in Berkeley thanks to a certain Miilionaire fellow based in Elmwood! How soon we forget!
1776peace November 06, 2012 at 06:44 AM
Check out local property records to see who now owns Berkeley from Library Gardens-- onward. How muc \h land can one person need? How much exploitation can we morallly tolerate?
1776peace November 06, 2012 at 07:31 AM
and this is what happens when people loose homes en masse- no different when people loose homes and livelihoods one by one! http://news.yahoo.com/where-housing-found-sandys-victims-225644825--finance.html
Mary November 06, 2012 at 10:40 PM
This is a reply to Chris Cook's comments. You mention "evidence" once and "facts" twice. What "evidence" and "facts" are you referring to? What is the source?
Laila Kearney (Editor) November 06, 2012 at 10:42 PM
Here's the latest letter to the editor about Measure S http://patch.com/A-zt5P
Dan November 08, 2012 at 07:01 AM
It's time for new business leadership in Berkeley. Roland Peterson has sopped up a ton of taxpayer and business money and perks running this scam on us all over and over. There are dozens of great ways to work on these problems and great people willing to do it. This lazy scapegoating and diversion is stale, weak and cowardly. I ask that we put this all behind us and work together for the GOOD of our entire community.
Dan November 08, 2012 at 07:09 AM
It's time for new business leadership in Berkeley. Roland Peterson has sopped up a ton of taxpayer and business money and perks running this scam on us all over and over. There are dozens of great ways to work on these problems and great people willing to do it. This lazy scapegoating and diversion is stale, weak and cowardly. I ask that we put this all behind us and work together for the GOOD of our entire community.
Dan November 08, 2012 at 07:10 AM
It's time for new business leadership in Berkeley. Roland Peterson has sopped up a ton of taxpayer and business money and perks running this scam on us all over and over. There are dozens of great ways to work on these problems and great people willing to do it. This lazy scapegoating and diversion is stale, weak and cowardly. I ask that we put this all behind us and work together for the GOOD of our entire community.
Dan November 08, 2012 at 07:19 AM
It's time for new business leadership in Berkeley. Roland Peterson has sopped up a ton of taxpayer and business money and perks running this scam on us all over and over. There are dozens of great ways to work on these problems and great people willing to do it. This lazy scapegoating and diversion is stale, weak and cowardly. I ask that we put this all behind us and work together for the GOOD of our entire community. Berkeley's most sucessful business people have been trying to remove "Roland the one trick pony" for some time now. This time I am not stopping until we get a group together that really understands Telegraph and Shattuck and really put things in motion that offers REAL solutions. Dan McMullan Disabled People Outside Project N on S commitee
Dan November 08, 2012 at 07:28 AM
By quietly sitting in front of the Social Security office and taking numbers through-out the day to ask if anything was happening with my case. I finally got the attention and funds I was entitled to after years of getting nowhere.That's what got me off the streets. Where would I be now if that law was in place then? The S law stated that "permitted" protests would be excepted. Where in the constitution does it say I need a permit to exercise free speech? In the "City of free speech, this is insanity."

Boards

More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »