Fences to go up around Camp Hope this week

SPOKANE, Wash. — Changes are on the horizon for people living in and near Camp Hope.

The Department of Transportation-owned land has become a source of frustration and disagreement among the city, state and county. On Monday, we’re told that fencing will soon go up around the perimeter, and along with that, enforcements on when those campers can come and go.

The perimeter of the camp has been moved by about 3 feet in preparation for that fence. While we were out there on Monday, campers were cleaning up their belongings and clearing the area.

Julie Garcia, Executive Director & Founder of Jewels Helping Hands, said that the fence will go up this week, and they’re hoping it happens on Wednesday.

The fence will have one secured point of entry, and a curfew from 8 p.m. to 8 a.m. unless a camper has a work release. If they leave the camp between those hours, they won’t be allowed back in. Garcia believes this could make a big difference for the neighbors in surrounding areas.

“It also helps with the optic of the neighborhood. If this camp is what they say is the crime in the neighborhood, this should mitigate most of that,” Garcia said.

She expects to lose about 10 percent of the campers when those enforcements go into place.

Meanwhile, they’re also working with the campers to get them “housing-ready.” They’ve set up a process to streamline getting them ID’s/social security cards/birth certificates.

“The Quality Inn will be brought online by Catholic charities and obviously we’ll need additional resources. Part of Commerce’s funding says that 50% of that has to be permanent housing,”” Garcia explained.

They’ll also be offering classes on responsible renting, employment, money management, and more.

READ: ‘We Aren’t Moving’: Jewels Helping Hands responds to plans to clear Camp Hope

READ: Spokane Homeless Coalition Chair invites sheriff, other City members to Camp Hope