MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) – An ordinance is set to be introduced Tuesday to Mobile City Council for camping in publicly owned spaces.
An ordinance encompassing the entire city being introduced on Tuesday. This ordinance tackling campsites on public property, like parks and bridge underpasses.
Mobile District four Councilman Ben Reynolds spoke out yesterday about his plans for a new ordinance to tackle campsites on public property said it’s a public health risk “This is to prevent folks from just deciding they can camp or sleep or store their property in public right of ways and in public parks.”
He said these camps are an improper use of public property and something the citizens in his district have brought to his attention. A homeless assessment of Mobile is happening soon, but Reynolds says this ordinance isn’t targeting those experiencing homelessness. “As this discussion unfolds, youll see this ordinance is not to resolve the homeless issue.” Reynolds said, “This ordinance is to solve a public health issue with regards to camping and public property and I think people would like to have a conversation about the homeless and I would too, but I think its important to keep the two separated with regards to this ordinance because this ordinance does not say anything about the homeless.”
Reynold said some of the areas, particularly in his district see camps on private property, which he says the city itself can’t do much for. “property owners need to hold themselves accountable to getting folks that they don’t want on their property, off their property. If they don’t want people camping on their property then they need to notify the police so that they can be removed and charged with trespassing,” Reynolds said. He went on to say no one will be disciplined right off the bat, but rather warned first and then if they don’t comply then they would be subject to a fine between $100-500 and an arrest.
If you know someone experiencing homelessness below are links to resources: