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Published: Wednesday, December 21, 2011, 2:58 p.m.

Portland homeless can camp in cars in church lots

PORTLAND -- The Portland City Council says religious organizations can allow the homeless to camp in cars in their parking lots.
The council voted Wednesday for a one-year test of the idea, which is much like a car camping program in Eugene.
The Oregonian reports that churches, synagogues, mosques and other nonprofit organizations can begin hosting up to four vehicles in their parking lots immediately.
The organizations must ensure access to bathrooms and minimize disruptions to neighbors, who can complain about nuisances to the city.
Council member Nick Fish said he tried out the idea two years ago and got a cool reception. But this year, he says, circumstances such as the Occupy movement and an uptick in homelessness in Multnomah County has brought a sense of crisis to the issue.
Story tags » Homelessness

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