By Danielle Anthony-Goodwin
The Safe Parking Community Network (SPCN) are holding forums this weekend to inform the community about the stages of homelessness. The first forum will be held tonight at 6.pm at St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church (3050 California Ave SW) and the second will be held tomorrow, Sat. 2nd February, at 6 p.m. at Ballard Odd Fellows Lodge (1706 NW Market St).
SPCN is a vehicle resident outreach organization that are hosting the forums to educate the community and to find better solutions. This forum comes at a pertinent time for locals to learn and take action to help prevent events like those we reported on January 30th, The unfortunate passing of two homeless in Ballard.
“People do not suddenly become chronically homeless. Often circumstances beyond their control cause a downward spiral in which the barriers to re-housing grow at every turn” says organizer Elizabeth Maupin. Tonight’s forums will include guest speaker Alison Eisinger, from Seattle King County Coalition on Homelessness (SKCCH), who will focus on what the 2013 numbers from One Night Count say about homelessness locally. Saturday’s forum will host speaker James Bible, from Seattle King County National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), who will focus on poverty and the law. Both forums will include a panel discussion to explore the stages of homelessness and how we can ensure access to affordable housing for all.
The forum will also provide updates on the progress of the safe parking program which was pioneered by Council member Mike O’Brien and Our Redeemer’s Lutheran Church in March 2012. This program aims to provide overnight parking in faith community parking lots where residents who live in their vehicles can escape ticketing and towing.
All are welcome to attend the forums. A meal will be provided and donations of non-perishables for local food banks are welcome.
Contact Elizabeth Maupin at firstname.lastname@example.org or 206-453-3903 for more information.