Union will also respond to Sacramento Bee’s Defamatory Attack on the California Homeless Union
Press Conference, Wednesday, February10, 2021 at 4:00 pm.
(Below is the Union’s Statement previously issued to the Media, including the Sacramento Bee, the day after the protest at Mayor Steinberg’s home.)
Homeless Union Statement on Protest against Darrell Steinberg
February 7, 2021
The California Homeless Union and its affiliated Sacramento Homeless Union did not participate as organizations in the recent protests at Mayor Steinberg’s house. We are in the process of ascertaining what happened. However, while not condoning whatever acts of vandalism may have been perpetrated by persons in the protest, neither will we condemn the protest nor what may have been property damage.
There needs to be some context and proportionality here; we are talking the wholesale destruction of thousands of tents and personal possessions—including food, water and life-saving items that our Union and hundreds of volunteers supplied to the homeless to protect them as best we could from the COVID-19 pandemic. Throughout this time, Sacramento Police continued to disregard CDC guidelines against clearing homeless encampments.
A rock thrown in anger against Mayor Steinberg’s door or trash dumped on his front lawn, if that is what took place, pales by comparison to the indifference of Mr. Steinberg for the unhoused and other marginalized communities. Last year, Steinberg was found by a Superior Court Judge to be in violation of Sacramento County Health Orders on COVID-19 and on June 26, 2021 he failed to open a warming center while hurricane-force winds tore a path of death and destruction through the homeless community costing at least six unhoused persons their lives.
Here in Black History Month, only days after honoring the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., we should remember what he said in 1965 in the aftermath of the urban uprisings in Watts and before that, Harlem which he refused to condemn saying “A riot is the language of the unheard.”
But today, in 2021, in the City of Sacramento, we will be heard. Through the growing support for the Recall of Darrell Steinberg; through all manner of organizing and resistance to the violence of homelessness, the violence of poverty, the violence of systemic racism.
So while we don’t condone acts of “vandalism” by the unheard, neither we will condemn it. Not as long as property rights are protected but human rights are ignored.
Crystal Sanchez, President of the Sacramento Homeless Union
Anthony Prince, Lead Organizer and General Counsel for the California Homeless Union Statewide Organizing Council.
Topic: Sacramento Homeless Union Press Release
Time: Feb 10, 2021 04:00 PM Pacific Time (US and Canada)
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