Phoenix (3TV/CBS 5) — The City of Phoenix faces major lawsuits for failing to address the homeless population in camps known as “The Zone” between 7th and 15th Avenues and between Van Buren and Grant Streets. increase. “Our problem isn’t the homelessness problem, it’s the city of Phoenix not recognizing this as a crisis,” said Debbie, who owns her shop at Old Station with her husband Joe. Failrace said.
A long-established sandwich shop, Old Station Sub Shop, is in “The Zone”. “The homelessness crisis is out of control. Death, violence, prostitution and drugs are rampant,” Debbie said.
The lawsuit shows pictures of drug use, crime, trash and even human excrement. As a result, residents and business owners say they have created a dangerous environment that leads to a decline in property values. Faillace said he lost business. “Some women say they don’t feel safe walking in this area, and some men say they don’t feel safe in this area,” Joe said.
The lawsuit alleges that “The Zone” is a public nuisance and would force the city to take action, including moving camps, if a judge agrees. Lawyers want to be clear that they don’t want to criminalize homeless people, but they do want the area to be safe and clean. “There is no single solution,” Circle the City spokesperson Marty Haymes said. “We need more affordable housing, not just the city of Phoenix. We need shelter.”
We reached out to city officials who said they weren’t considering a lawsuit yet, but they pointed to the city council’s approval of $50 million last fiscal year to fight homelessness and another $70 million for social programs. But Failrace said the city is running out dramatically. They hope the lawsuit will change the situation. “It’s been two years and I haven’t done anything,” Joe said. “We need help.”
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