SACRAMENTO – Today, Senate Minority Leader Brian W. Jones (R-San Diego) welcomes Senator Bill Dodd (D-Napa) as a coauthor of his Senate Bill 31 (Jones), a measure that aims to compassionately clear encampments near sensitive areas.
“Kids shouldn’t be exposed to the open drug use and the dangerous situations we are seeing in homeless encampments near schools and parks across the state,” said Leader Jones. “It’s inhumane and unhealthy for our state to continue looking the other way when homeless individuals and families are living and building housing structures on sidewalks and streets. It’s also unfair and often dangerous for the neighbors, families, and children in these sensitive areas. I’ve said from the beginning, this is not a partisan issue. We welcome the bipartisan support on our measure to address this issue compassionately and connect people with the services and shelter they desperately need.
“Californians of all political stripes can agree on one thing — homelessness is a crisis in our state,” said Senator Dodd. “We must work together to move people from encampments into better accommodations where they can have access to services. I appreciate Senator Jones’s efforts to address this issue.”
Over 2,000 Californians have signed a petition in support of SB 31, which will compassionately clear encampments by:
- Prohibiting encampments near the sensitive community areas of schools, parks, libraries, and daycare centers. This will help protect our most vulnerable population: our children;
- Requiring a 72-hour warning before an encampment sweep. This will give homeless individuals a chance to find alternatives and services before their encampment is cleared; and
- Requiring enforcement officers to provide information about sleeping alternatives, homeless and mental health services, and/or homeless shelters in the area. This will help connect homeless individuals to desperately needed services as encampments are compassionately cleared.
In addition to Senator Dodd, SB 31 is principal coauthored by Senator Shannon Grove (R-Bakersfield) and coauthored by Senators Brian Dahle (R-Bieber), Roger Niello (R-Fair Oaks), Janet Nguyen (R-Huntington Beach), Rosilicie Ochoa Bogh (R-Yucaipa), Kelly Seyarto (R-Murrieta), and Scott Wilk (R-Santa Clarita). Click here for the SB 31 fact sheet. SB 31 is currently in the Senate Public Safety Committee and is set for hearing next Tuesday, March 28, 2023.