Portland woman says homelessness is ‘piece of cake’ thanks to 3 meals, lax drug policies, no cops

Portland woman says homelessness is ‘piece of cake’ thanks to 3 meals, lax drug policies, no cops

Portland’s homeless inhabitants is livin’ on simple avenue.

A homeless girl who recognized herself as Wendy final week advised homeless activist Kevin Dahlgren that dwelling on the streets is a breeze because of Oregon’s lax drug insurance policies and lack of police enforcement.

“It’s a bit of cake, actually. I imply, that’s why you most likely obtained so many out right here as a result of they feed you three meals a day,” Wendy advised Dahlgren in a avenue interview. “They’re loving us to loss of life. You don’t should do shit however keep in your tent or social gathering or should you smoke of plenty of dope you are able to do that.”

Dahlgren, who runs the nonprofit We Coronary heart Seattle, needs to finish homelessness by “empowering not enabling” others.

He thanked Wendy for her honesty earlier than including that Portland’s method doesn’t appear to be “actually serving to anyone.”

“It’s not,” Wendy agreed. “That’s why you see all of the tents.”

In September, the state’s Well being Authority discovered that its new legislation decriminalizing small quantities of all avenue medication had “failed.” Below the Oregon legislation, which went into impact final February, these discovered with personal-use quantities of medicine, corresponding to together with heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, LSD, oxycodone and ecstasy, can be slapped with fines as an alternative of legal prices.

Wendy lives in a Portland homeless encampment.kevinvdahlgren/Twitter

Within the first six months of the legislation, deadly overdoses skyrocketed, with unintentional opioid overdose deaths leaping from 472 to 739 in 2021. Lower than 1% of drug customers who accessed drug therapy providers opted for rehabilitation applications, knowledge exhibits.

As an alternative, homeless drug customers have been left to social gathering all evening and sleep all day, Wendy mentioned.

There are over 6,600 homeless individuals in Portland throughout greater than 700 encampments. Though town’s Mayor Ted Wheeler introduced in October plans to ban the camps, the tent cities have largely remained undisturbed by metropolis officers, together with police.

Wendy’s dentures had been stolen from her tent a number of weeks in the past.

Wendy mentioned being homeless in Portland is a “piece of cake.”


Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler introduced plans to take away town’s homeless encampments.


“Right here you don’t have any police. There’s no police round,” Wendy mentioned. “You get harm, you’re screwed as a result of they’re not serving to anyone. You don’t see them anyplace.”

Wendy claimed that she “was once like everyone else” earlier than falling on exhausting occasions. She used to run her personal hair salon in Washington, owned a home and drove a Lexus, however advised Dahlgren she misplaced every little thing after shedding her husband.

Wendy mentioned she needs to return to slicing hair and get one other job, however can’t till she will get a brand new pair of dentures — her final pair was stolen proper from her personal tent, she mentioned.

“They try this right here,” she mentioned.

Dahlgren revealed Monday that he had arrange a fundraiser for Wendy to get her a brand new pair of dentures and that the video collection had helped Wendy’s brother lastly discover the place his homeless sister had been dwelling.

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