My Turn: What law are we breaking?
I am homeless and quite unemployable due to my age and my health. I am awaiting a disability appeals hearing in July, as I was initially turned down, and the state stopped my APTD (Aid to People with Disabilities) payments, so when I went to get my rent money last Jul,y there was no money on my card.
Without any money or work, I had no place to live and had to stay in the emergency shelter this past winter, for which I am very grateful. When the shelter closed in March, I went to set up camp down by the tracks. This let me and other homeless friends be near the Friendly Kitchen, Open Hands for clothing and the Concord Homeless Resource Center to connect with housing and other agencies, to have access to a shower as well as laundry vouchers.
When the Concord police came through the camps saying we had to move from that area by the tracks, other homeless friends and I moved to a quiet, unused, non-posted wooded area. Recently we were told that the area we live in is now being declared a no-camping area. If we are still there on Wednesday, our possessions will be taken and disposed of.
My friends and I have called to ask what law we are breaking by using the public land. What authority does the agency posting the notice have to declare a section of public property unavailable to the public? We, of course, still do not have an answer.
(Frank Sobol lives in Concord.)