Latest Updates: Below are the latest updates to our web site and about
Monday, September 26, 2005
The Katrina evacuees seem more deserving of relief than Portland's poor as
the unused Washington Monroe High School building is quickly transformed
into a shelter for hurricane victims and just as quickly returned to its
former vacant condition when the Red Cross is ordered to stand down. Here's
from this week's Willamette.
Dignity's begun hosting weekly craft classes in collaboration with
one of the local high schools.
At Dignity Village with the approach of cold weather we continue to
build housing as per our mission and our
Dignity Village Proposal, 2004-.
Monday, August 8, 2005
As images are popular on this site, we post a vintage
photo of pipe-smoking
Villagers and delegate Comrade K of the
Association of Poor People in Nagai Park.
Comrade K, incidentally, is digitally masked in this photo for his own
safety as his organization frequently comes up against unscrupulous labor
contractors and the Yakuza as well as Osaka's bureaucracy.
We also post
an image and a few words
from the benefit book Criminal
Reality. Net proceeds from the sale of the book go into the community
treasury and help fund Dignity's operational costs. So if you like
Dignity's self-housing effort and support our cause, be sure to
BUY OUR BOOK!
And be sure to tell your friends to buy it, too.
At Dignity, as two new houses near completion, we find that building
together increases the peace while the work we do reduces poverty.
Monday, July 11, 2005
The Oregon Department of Transportation
off areas under
some of its bridges to discourage homeless encampments but permits an
under one bridge in the toney Pearl District not far from an earlier Dignity
site. Meanwhile at Dignity Village we house ourselves, one house at a
Visionary Mark Lakeman talks about the ongoing struggle for social change,
guerrilla building projects,
the permitting process, the
Village Building Convergence and the building projects he undersees that
others may overstand in this informative article from The Portland
The Hanford to Bangor Interfaith Peace Walk stops by the Village on July
20th at noon where the participants will briefly rest before continuing
on. For more information about the walk and how to join, check the
Currently the Village has more plant starts than soil to plant them in. If
you'd like starts for your summer garden, particularly tomato starts,
contact us at (503) 281/1604.
Monday, June 27, 2005
In Nishinari Park in Osaka, tent city dwellers struggle against eviction
by park officials. To see how you may help out, simply click on the
King County's Tent City 4, which operates under the Federal "Church Land
Use and Institutionalized Persons" ruling, comes under threat with the
Meanwhile Tent City Solutions, an organization opposed to temporary
solutions to the disastrous shortfall in affordable housing, lobbies for an
audit to end
SHARE/WHEEL's federal money stream. Apparently Steve Pyeatt fails to see
any correlation between natural disasters like earthquakes that make
people homeless and policy decisions and economic factors that accomplish
the same end.
campaign sees ink in the Portland Trib.
The Village is looking for a licensed plumber as we near completion of our
new solar-powered, gas-fired showers. All interested applicants for the
job may contact us at (503) 281/1604 or through this website.
Finally, Dignity thanks the InterVarsity Christian Fellowship students for
their great company and good works on their recent service project at the
Village. Big thanks to Steve, Lindsey, Rebecca, Brian, Craig and the
entire Intervarsity crew!
Monday, June 13, 2005
Ah, the sweet smell of industry! First a
composter hungry for a home
sets its sites on a twenty-acre parcel of land on Marine Drive oblivious to the
presence of NIMBY neighbor George Donnerberg of the McQuire Point Marina
just across the highway, then all hell breaks loose as Donnerberg
raises a big stink
about the company's proposed location. "We went into this with
eyes wide open," he says, presumably referring to the purchase of his
houseboat in 1997. "We didn't anticipate a Dignity Village or a refuse
It all kind of makes you wonder what smells better, at least to
Donnerberg's nostrils -- a green, sustainable industry like Cedar Grove
Composting or a green, sustainable village like Dignity?
In other news, some of Tent City 4's neighbors buy into the fear for
security concerns of the "criminal, disease-ridden homeless" and support
greater tent city regulation which in turn generates spirited
Monday, June 6, 2005
Photog Mathew Graybeal not only took great pics during Dignity's
participation in the first International Tent Cities and Housing
Alternatives Day celebration, but even posted the National Coalition for
of support on indymedia.
Big thanks, Mathew!
To view John Bonnar's photos of Toronto's picnic on that day, simply click
"Dignity Village: Some bad days but more good ones"
is from the June issue
of The Portland Alliance. And look here -- Villagers Alan and Laura were
honored at the
Photovoice Look Here! Premiere
on May 22.
Dignity Village of course IS the solution to homelessness in this country
and neither requests nor accepts government funding. One way you may help
fund Dignity and end homelessness is to
BUY OUR BOOK.
Monday, May 30, 2005
Friday, June 3rd is a benefit concert for
Dignity Village, with the
Monday, May 23, 2005
Dignity gives thanks to all that made the first International Tent Cities and Housing Alternatives Day a big success. Participating, supporting and related organizations included the National Coalition of the Homeless in Washington, DC; SHARE/WHEEL's Tent Cities 3 and 4 in Seattle/King County, WA; Pierce County Coalition of the Homeless, Guadalupe House, Catholic Workers House in Tacoma/Pierce County, WA; Village of Serene Freedom, Spokane, WA; Crossroads Community, Sisters of the Road, Street Roots, Try/on Life Community Farm, and Dignity Village, Portland, OR; Sanctuary City/ARISE for Social Justice, Springfield, MA; Denver Tent City Initiative, Denver, CO; Camp River Haven, Ventura, CA; Anti-Poverty Committee, Vancouver, BC; Ontario Coalition Against Poverty, Toronto Disaster Relief Committee, Edmund Yu Safe House, and the Self-Housing Association of Toronto, Ontario; Tokusyu Rouso Junbai Kai, Nishinari Kouen Yorozu Soudansyo, Association of Poor People in Nagai Park, and the Kamagasaki Patrol (KAMAPAT) in Osaka, Japan; Shibuya Nojiren in Tokyo, Japan; and all the intentional communities of
ecovillages, cohousing, residential land trusts, urban housing cooperatives and other related projects and dreams.
Dignity also thanks the Out Loud Poets, Agent Contajus, Orphan Child, DJ Short Change and all the players of instruments and singers of songs who took to Dignity's stage last Sunday; Helen Hill for her help locating a PA system and equipment; Ras Danny for solid technical advice; and all Villagers who worked so hard to make the day a success.
Dignity also thanks
for our new computers, Log House Plants for the many
flats of flowers and vegetable starts, and WW Press for the incredible
production of the first Village
at PSU sharpens up the focus on Portland's
Monday, May 16, 2005
The first annual ITCHAD was marked yesterday at the Village with music,
poetry, plenty of food and good company -- even the weather held for us
with only a few intermittent sprinkles. We're pleased to post a speech
read in Toronto's Nathan Phillip's Square yesterday at a picnic marking
the day, a
of solidarity from our comrades in Osaka, and a
by the Acting Executive Director of the National Coalition of
the Homeless in support of the setting up and operating of tent cities.
We hope to see many readers of this site at tonight's
"Community with Dignity"
presentation at the Hollywood Theatre.
Monday, May 9, 2005
THE FIRST ANNUAL INTERNATIONAL TENT CITIES AND HOUSING ALERNATIVES DAY
PICNIC AND CELEBRATION
kicks off in this town at Portland's own Dignity
Village this Sunday at noon and continues until the sun goes down.
we post for easy downloadability. And here's Denver's
In other news, the City set up its wind turbine across the fence in the
Bureau of Maintenance' leaf composting facility today, a considerably
larger affair than the turbine at Dignity Village. We're wondering at the
Village if the City will be inviting any local dignitaries to the
turbine's grand opening and if so, if any Villagers will be invited.
Monday, May 2, 2005
scoops the rest with this
news item about International Tent
City and Alternative Housing Day on Sunday, May 15. Plans are still underway at
Dignity, but the party promises to be LARGE. Denver is marking ITCAHD
with a rally
at the City and County Building on Monday, May 16.
On Monday, May 16, our partners at
present "Community with Dignity"
at the Hollywood Theatre. Panelists include Village Vice
Chair Chrysler Chelle, Washington State Professor Susan Finley,
The City Repair Project's
Co-Director Mark Lakeman, Village Treasurer and Outreach
Coordinator Tim McCarthy, and Professor Tracy Prince of PSU's Department
of Urban Planning.
Monday, April 18, 2005
The Housin' Prablem seems to be
including in the latest
A number of projects are in the works, including a couple of literary
collaborations between Village writers
and Jack Tafari
and the artist
These books will soon be available through this site
and in a number of local outlets to help raise the funding we need.
Work on our
Kwamba Media Productions
also proceeds apace.
Work on relocating our showers was a bit of a wash this weekend due to
And as visitors to this site seem to like pics, here's a
of Villagers with Jamaica's mighty revolutionary poet Mutabaruka that we are
pleased to add to our
Dignity in the Wider Community page.
Monday, April 11, 2005
Our friends at Tent City 4 are in the news a lot lately. Lately Kirkland, WA,
changed the rules
a little allowing more than one church to host a tent city
and Tent City 4 was promptly invited to
a new church site.
Dignity Village voted unanimously last Thursday to be part of an
International Tent City and Alternative Housing Day set for May 15th and
two new committees begin organizing for the day. If you'd like to be part
of this event and celebrate with us, contact the Village through this site.
We're building new showers at the Village on Saturday and Sunday, April 16
and 17, our builders are shining up their hammers, we have the supplies
and building materials required, and frame up starts Saturday morning at
10 AM. Building coordinator Chrysler Chelle invites you to join us this
weekend for some practical experience where we may all teach and learn.
Saturday evening, of course, Jamaica's mighty
Mutabaruka performs at the
Blue Monk. Be aware that tickets for Muta's performance are available at
the door ONLY, go on sale at about 5 PM, and those wishing to hear the
POWER of the spoken WORD are advised to "BE DEH EARLY!"
On Sunday Dignity's partner organization Street Roots is having a
at the Ash Street Saloon.
We add more pics to our
newer construction page.
Monday, March 28, 2005
Internationally, tent city initiatives and tent cities across the
continent and beyond are mobilizing and organizing an International Tent
City and Alternative Housing Day of solidarity tentatively set for May
15th. Watch this space for more information as events unfold.
In Victoria, British Columbia, David Arthur Johnston's occupation of St
Ann's Academy in his fight for the right to sleep continues. To learn more
about this heroic struggle, click on this link to a brand new
The renowned revolutionary poet
Mutabaruka who passed through this town at
the start of the Out of the Doorways campaign in 2000 is coming again to
Portland. The poet's spoken word performance on April 16th at the Blue
Monk should be well attended.
Mutabaruka will also be signing copies of
his new collection of poems
"Mutabaruka: The Next Poems / the First Poems"
at Laughing Horse Books.
At Dignity, the building continues as you may see in these pics of the
Currently we're relocating our showers and add a
of building materials to our construction page.
And last but certainly not least, we're pleased to announce the birth to
former Villager Kat Spry of a beautiful new daughter.
Nevaeh Angelique Spry
was born on March 5th and weighed in at a healthy 7 lbs 8 oz at birth.
Mother and baby are both well and currently stabily housed.
Monday, March 21, 2005
The March 18th issue of Street Roots is full up with news of
poetry, art, a solid, signed editorial
"Open your minds to housing alternatives"
which we take the liberty of posting and well worth the
dollar suggested donation it costs on the street.
Featured in this issue of Environmental Building News is "Greening
Affordable Housing" and a tip of the tam to editor Jessica Boehland for
Dignity's inclusion and for sending along the
Finally, here's a
of students helping reduce construction scraps to
usable firewood for the common area's wood stove. Some of the students
came from as far away as Lubbock, Texas.
Monday March 14 2005
The big news this week is that the Dignity Village album sees its first
pressing. The album was composed as a soundtrack for "from Doorways to
Dignity" and contains many standout tracks, including "Dignity Freestyle"
by Bigg Funny, and "Freedom Rider" by Big Al, "When I Am Old" by Gaye
Reyes, and a special version of Sam Cook's "Chain Gang" that will probably
have Sam rolling in his grave!
You won't be able to hear the album that is the talk of Dignity Village
we're making with Kwamba Media Productions is
released, but you may hear a couple of tracks previewed on an upcoming
special edition of the Higher Reasoning Reggae Time show hosted by the one
Ras Danny on KBOO RADIO 90.7 FM.
The formation of Dignity got a
in this week's Thirty Year
Anniversary issue of Willamette Week and a whole
page in the Bay Area's
And as visitors to this site seem to like pics, here's
one of Dignity
officers meeting Commissioner Sam Adams at the "new" City Hall, and
of the builders of Dignity siting a newly constructed deck for a
Monday, March 7, 2005
The good news this week that you won't read in The Oregonian is
This news you will
read in Street Roots and
Props and big respect to all GNB activists!
Also in the current issue of Street Roots are these
words from Whitaker
Middle School, including
by Jessica Jerkins,
by Trisha N and another piece similarly titled by
Monday, February 28, 2005
THE TRANSFORMATION OF SUNDERLAND YARD CONTINUES
The transformation of Dignity Village from the shanty town that it became after its fifth sweep to the Village's present Sunderland Yard location begun during the Village Building Convergence (VBC) in the spring of 2003 continues unto this day.
Dignity Village was swept to its present piece of uneven asphalt on what was then part of Portland's leaf composting facility with the fall leaves in September, 2001, and what's most obviously apparent in this transformation is the houses that are being built everywhere in accordance with our proposal to the City. At this writing the sounds of power tools and hammers fill the afternoon air and compete with the occasional screams of the jet engines of war planes taking off from the nearby airport runway and the whirr and clank of industrial machinery across the chain link fence. Living in Dignity Village can be described as like living on a construction site as Villagers and volunteers deconstruct the "train wrecks" as the old structures are sometimes affectionately called and reconstruct the new, code compliant yet portable housing.
There are houses of many kinds in the Village now from Portland's first straw bale house built during VBC 2003 to the five light straw/clay infill (cob) houses begun and mostly completed during and after VBC 2004. Dignity probably has the largest collection of environmentally-friendly cob housing in the Pacific Northwest.
There is a charming house that Gaye Reyes now occupies built with a little help from Portland State's Community Development Club and modeled on a design taken directly from Samuel Mockby's Rural Studio. The interior of the house is nearly complete and finely detailed a credit to the skill and work of Village woodcrafter Big Al." Woodworking is really not a job for me," Al says. "It brings pleasure in so many ways." Gaye plans to send a photo of herself in her house when it's finished to Portland's former Mayor Katz, thanking her for helping locate this piece of God's earth and allowing her to have a home.
Treasurer Tim's house is built using standard stick framing on a ten by fifteen foot deck the requisite eighteen inches above the ground that the Bureau of Development Services recommends for all new structures, the height allowing Village cats' access underneath the decks to do their work of hunting rats and mice.
Tim points out that his house is reclaimed, having been formerly used and then moved by other Villagers to its new deck. The cedar shingles that adorn its front entrance and the siding on its front wall were also reclaimed from an old garage at Wendy Kohn's farm. The effect is a rugged exterior. "It's kinda like me," Tim says, "rugged looking on the outside, kinda like an old mountain man." The dwelling's exterior contrasts sharply with its interior of a blue-painted ceiling with clouds and stars, lavender walls and a bright purple carpet. "Once again," Tim points out, "it suits me."
The houses do not really belong to any individual Village member but are instead the property of Dignity Village, Inc, a membership-based non-profit incorporation registered with the state and federal governments. What was birthed by an act of civil disobedience and protest by homeless people who began a campaign has changed into what we are today. And the zoning of the land on which Dignity stands has changed in its designation from industrial to campground. Dignity Village is now Oregon's first transitional homeless campground.
What guides the transformation of this piece of ground is a vision picked up along the way along with many good supporters. It is the vision of a green, sustainable urban village where we may live simply and in harmony with our mother Earth and where we may do for and help ourselves and others. As our proposal so eloquently states," Dignity Village is the only place-based community in this town that practices grass roots democracy with an ecological vision. It is the only walkable community not invaded by cars, and it is the most cost efficient self-help model for transcending homelessness in the nation." At Dignity we not only build the housing so readily apparent at Sunderland Yard but community as well as a model while helping develop the tools with which to build the model and others like it.
To lend a hand building Dignity or to donate building materials, contact construction coordinator Ross at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For other material donations, contact Village donation coordinator Paul at email@example.com.
To donate cash to help our effort, click on the credit card icon on our website http://dignity.scribble.com or send checks payable to "Dignity Village, Inc" to 9325 NE Sunderland Road, Portland, OR 97211. Dignity Village does not solicit donations door-to-door or on the streets.
To visit the Village or to schedule visits by schools and other organizations, contact outreach coordinator Tim McCarthy at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our number at the Village is (503) 281/1604 and our outreach number is (503) 249/6927.
If you're homeless and interested in joining our company to transition up and out of homelessness while building community, housing and a useful model for other homeless people, contact Villager Kay at email@example.com of Dignity's tents and population committee.
Dignity Village has no paid staff and our membership and residents constantly seek paying jobs and work. If you know of any work or seek employees, call the Village JOB LINE (503) 493/0740.
We truly appreciate your support!
Monday, February 21, 2005
Internationally last week there was a VIOLENT EVICTION IN GOIANIA, BRAZIL.
On February 16, a large military police operation with 2,500 men began
evicting the 3000 families of the Sonho Real (Real Dream) land occupation.
Two people got killed, over 800 got arrested and several people were
wounded, some seriously.
The occupation started in May 2004 in an area which has been abandoned for
years and quickly gathered 3,000 families. In January, Justice ordered the
eviction of the families and since then police have been terrifying the
families with death threats and sudden attacks. In February 11, police
showed up suddenly and shot gas and concussion bombs and fired rubber
bullets against the people. One child got hit by a concussion bomb. On
February 15, in another attack, police shot bombs and fired with guns. Two
people got hurt. After pressure from
social movements and human rights groups, state of Goiania's Governor
Marconi Perillo committed himself not to send police to evict people in a
violent way (you can hear his commitment in this recorded
Today's attack and the so far confirmed death of two people showed he did
not stick to his words.
You can pressure authorities for the release of the arrested and for the
investigation of the murders:
Marconi Ferreira Perillo, Goias State Governor Phone # 55 - 62 - 2131456
r.231 Fax # 55 - 62 - 2131479 or 2131481 E-mail:
Jonathas Silva Public Security Secretary Phone # 55 - 62 -
2651000 or 2651050 Fax # 55 - 62 - 2651001 or 2651002
* * *
Regionally Seattle/King County's Tent Cities 3 and 4 have been put on a
diet and ordered to slim down by next year. In
"A neighborly plan"
one option considered is giving King County's tent city residents bus rides to
Portland. On the plus side, there were no protesters at Tent City 4's
* * *
From Portland's excellent
Street Roots current
issue we post
"The Power of Who You Know (Open letter to the World Bank)"
and as a preview from the latest edition currently in layout,
"The fight to save the Farm."
For background information about the Farm and
directions to tomorrow's
demo, simply follow the links.
* * *
At Dignity Village the building continues and soon we'll be producing
greeting cards like
these to help fund our project building housing,
community and a model for other poor people.
¡Hasta La Victoria Siempre!
Monday, February 7, 2005
Winterfolk XVII, the annual
Sisters of the Road
benefit concert, filled
the Aladdin Theater on Saturday night. Playing to a packed house were
Misty River, David Rea, the Tom May Trio, Dan Crary and Beppe Gambetta,
Kate Power and Steve Einhorn. The inimitable Utah Phillips, a man who
admits he lacks "rant control," headlined and thoroughly engaged the
We're pleased to add this
pic of folksinger
founder Genny Nelson standing on the porch of Portland's first straw bale
house to the visitor's page of this site.
Many people have helped Dignity in its effort to build what some have
called "the New Jerusalem, a new Mt Zion right here on Mother Earth," and
we update our
to honor those members of our community
both housed and unhoused who have helped along the way. All organizations
and individuals interested in helping with our project are invited to
contact us through this web site.
Monday, January 31, 2005
Poverty's large and in charge in Portland with so many people living on
the streets, and the management and regulation of the poor sometimes seems
to be the only growing sector of the local economy. Although the
numbers aren't all in yet on how many sleep out, the homeless count will
give those who blind their eyes a
wake up call
to its dimensions.
Getting people into
housing won't be easy either as
section 8 housing takes a hit.
We post not
fliers for Washington State's "Globalization of
Homelessness and Poverty" series. The lecture series is free and
everyone's welcome to attend.
were recently exhibited and may have a
monetary value to their subjects. If you recognize yourself in any one
of these exquisite drawings, kindly contact this web site.
Monday, January 24, 2005
Washington State University Vancouver's spring 2005 Honors Lecture Series
begins Thursday with Jim Craven of Clark College discussing the economics
of globalization during the opening session.
The Thursday program is free and open to the public. It starts at 7 p.m.
in Room 6 of the Multimedia Building on campus, 14204 NE Salmon Creek Ave.
The series, "Globalization of Homelessness and Poverty," runs through
April 28th and will cover global and local perspectives. The series
includes a March 31st session on documentary film making with Wendy Kohn of
Kwamba Media Productions,
the demonstration of a CD ROM tool from
Kwamba's new media toolkit, a brief history of the formation of
Dignity Village, and an April 14th panel discussion with representatives
from social service agencies in Clark County.
For further details call (360) 546/9649 or check the University's
* * *
Just in is this
report of the sweeping and cleansing of Nagoya
Park of the homeless people living there in anticipation of the 2005 World
Exposition which begins March 25th. City official Nobuo Yamanaka denies
that people are being removed because of the exposition and claims
necessary maintenance work like the trimming of trees for the park's
beautification. For the full AP story click
and the urgent appeal for letters of support and solidarity from
our comrades of the Nagai Association of Poor People click
* * *
Locally, the Village Council supports the efforts of and endorses
Try/on Life Community Farm
and their struggle to
establish an urban ecological agriculture education community on the
opposite side of town in Southwest Portland. We may be on opposite sides
of town and contain different subsets of Portland's citizenry but we like
and fully approve what The Farm's doing!
Monday, January 17, 2005
The new promotional trailer for Dignity's feature-length documentary has
just been released and provides a glimpse into the style and story of the
completed film, due out within a year. The film will hopefully be aired on
cable or public television and will also be available on DVD. Contact our
community partners at
Kwamba Media Productions
for a copy
of the trailer or Media Toolkit prototype. Here's a
synopsis of the film,
a promo poster,
and a synopsis of the accompanying
In other media this update is
"The Village That Shopping Carts Built"
"On false promises and free breakfasts"
from the latest
And we're pleased to post pics from December's Winter Solstice
at Dignity Village.
Monday, January 10, 2005
Dignity recently sent a
to the Japanese Embassy in Washington, DC,
and the Human Rights Committee of the United Nations High Commission on
Human Rights condemning the kicking and beating of two day laborers at the
Nishinari Police Station and the subsequent framing of Amalgamated Workers
Union President Hoshiri Inagaki and another worker for the assault. We
were made aware of this outrage by our comrades of the
Association of Poor People in Nagai Park,
an affiliated tent city in Osaka, Japan, and all
letters condemning the brutality of the Nishinari police and expressions
of solidarity will be greatly appreciated.
Saturday's Oregonian editorial
The cure for homelessness
Home Again - The 10-Year Plan to End Homelessness
and bemoans the high cost to the taxpayer of shelter and housing for the
homeless, both of which cost the Village about $3 per person per night.
"Homelessness is an old problem," it says, "but the old, grizzled ways of
approaching it aren't working very well."
You gotta love Portland! When a half-dozen Aryan Nation
threatened to leaflet Gabriel Park with their hate literature, the
response of protesters was rapid and massive.
Our community partners at
are sponsoring another
Free Medical Clinic at Dignity Village and as the Village is
"homeless-friendly" and seeks to benefit the wider community, we invite
all who require medical services to stop by the Village. For more
information, phone Laura at 503/535-3890 or the Village at 503/281-1604 or
Finally, as visitors to this site seem to like photos, here's a
Dignity's Jack Tafari and the World Bank's Michael Woolcock sharing the
podium at last October's Crisis Innovations Fair.
The photo was taken while both speakers were being introduced by Crisis
UK's policy director Tariq Hilal and in the pic Woolcock appears to be
praying. When the speakers met the previous night at
Crisis' Skylight Café
and exchanged pleasantries over glasses of wine, Tafari asked if Woolcock
had seen the Stephanie Black film
Life and Debt
and wondered aloud why IMF
and World Bank debt repayment schedules impacted so negatively on the
Jamaican economy and increased the sufferation of that country's small
farmers and workers, Woolcock jumped back as if shocked. "What are you
going to do to me?" Woolcock asked who was first to speak at the
conference. "Nothing," replied Tafari, "I'm speaking from a set
presentation. But one day I'll write about our meeting and the World
Bank's "social capital" construct." Perhaps this explains Mr. Woolcock's
seeming attitude of prayer.
Monday, January 3, 2005
The big news in Portland today is the swearing in of Tom Potter as this
town's 46th mayor. Mayor Potter was sworn in at a brief but packed
inaugural ceremony at the Performing Arts Center at David Douglas High
The Oregonian's editorial board's back on track and in fine form doing the
same old thing
in the New Year with their latest, gutless unsigned
editorial "Creating a child friendly city" which came out yesterday. If
it's not Dignity and the homeless arousing the ire of the O's crusading
Rose City Copwatch
or gay marriage proponents and lately
tsunami victims for not having an early warning system.
Street Roots' fine poetry edition hit the pavement last week and we post
from that issue on our poems and writings page.
Monday, December 27, 2004
The City's unenforceable Title 14, struck down as overbroad in its
definition and Unconstitutional as it targets mainly homeless people,
comes back as "Title 14 Lite" in City Council's 18 month pilot project.
"Bah, Bum Hug"
from the Portland Mercury.
Monday, December 20, 2004
The big news this week at Dignity is that the Village is now four years old. The celebration on Thursday, December 16, at the Village was low key with no press in attendance. At 6 o'clock that evening Villagers, wearing festive party hats, got down to the serious business of electing the new council at Dignity's third annual council elections.
The new Village Council is seven members strong with Jack Tafari again Chair and Tim McCarthy reelected Village Treasurer. Former security chief and building co-coordinator Chrysler Chelle is the new Vice Chair and Dean Marchioni is the new Village Secretary. On the whole, the Village is pleased with the election results and looks forward to the coming year.
"Everyone deserves dignity"
is Street Roots' most recent editorial and
we're pleased to post Keith Vann's thoughtful letter
"Things you can do to help homeless people regain their dignity."
And here's community reporter Christina Heatherton's piece
"On false promises and free breakfasts"
straight from the trenches of the Ventura River Basin.
Monday, December 13, 2004
There's a ton of tent city news on the West Coast this week, news of King
County's TC3-4, Portland's Dignity Village, even the new River Haven
encampment whose Web site is currently under construction got a mention.
"Homeless on their own terms"
is from the
Seattle Post Intelligencer and
"Tent cities offer shelter, self-respect"
is from ... The Oregonian?!! But then, it's an AP story.
The West Coast homeless are organized and creative in their housing
solutions, but Jeffery Archer's
Wyoming, is certainly and notably innovative. One thing Attorney Vaugn
Neubauer had right is how different the political and legal
geographies are between the blue states of the West Coast and the way
things stay there in red Wyoming.
recent compilation "Everyday Revolutions" saw its debut on Thursday
and we're pleased to see Laura Brown's
"Homeless Karma" in that fine
edition which we proudly post on our Poetry and Writings page.
Monday, December 6, 2004
There have been many articles written lately about the sweeps in the
Ventura River basin where up to 300 people recently lost their homes
and were "rounded up" like cattle. Here's a
about a more
sensible solution to the plight of at least 30 people there, a temporary legal
encampment somewhat like Dignity Village.
The latest issue of
recently hit the streets. Israel Bayer's
frontpage lead story
looks at Portland's
achievements over the past year in a solidly national context while Joanne
with Dignity's Ambassador Orion Gray places the issue of
homelessness in a global context.
Finally, we're pleased to post Tanzi Smith's paper
"Dignity Village - Part
of the symptoms of and solutions to homelessness"
which was recently
submitted to the School of Social Science and Planning at RMIT University
in Melbourne, Australia.
Monday, November 29, 2004
This morning Treasurer Tim McCarthy and Vice Chair Jack Tafari were guests
on the "Just George Maurer Show" on WKIZ 1500 AM radio which hails from
Key West, FLA, a recent recipient of the National Coalition for the
Homeless' "America's Meanest City" in its treatment of the homeless award.
We talked, among other things, about Dignity Village and Portland's
progressive campground approach as a possible alternative to the current
crisis in affordable housing which contrasts sharply with Florida's and
where 25,000 homes were destroyed in recent hurricanes with another 50,000
so severely structurally damaged as to require demolition. Hopefully few
of Florida's recently homeless population will find it necessary to seek
relief in Key West!
Kelpie Wilson's recent
A Virtual Ecotopia
speaks of Ernest
Callenbach's Ecotopia and blue state secession, namechecks Dignity Village
and even mentions our site Dignity Virtual Village. Meanwhile Dignity
Village, one of those anomalies and seemingly insignificant bleeps on the
edge of the radar screen that no one really notices, keeps bleeping and
becoming brighter, shifting the paradigm as anomalies are wont to do, a
harbinger of things to come that precedes the coming shift in human
Our photo pages get a disproportionate number of hits and as visitors seem
to enjoy pics, we're pleased to post this one of
a reporter who recently visited the Village. The pic was taken on a sunny
October day using a digital camera with Ginju's recently completed light
straw/clay infill house as a backdrop.
Monday, November 22, 2004
Regionally the Ashland Housing Alliance (AHA) pitches its plan for a
sanctioned, non-profit campground modeled along the lines of Dignity
Village to which out-going Mayor Alan Deboer responds by pitching his own
Ahland's initially cool
to the idea of such an encampment, AHA's presentation before their Housing
Commission we understand went very well.
Here's John Darling's recent piece about Ashland's homeless and the need
for a campground from the
There were a number of passages at Dignity Village over the past month.
Dignity's provisional Mayor Grandma Coyote left us last month and A
Farewell to Jada
Grandma of politics leaves void in Portland
both note her passing.
Old Nate, the Village's oldest resident, left the nursing home and came
home to die in Dignity among family and friends. Nate was 74.
And Dog Dave's beloved
after a long life of service and companionship, finally found her rest.
Monday, November 15, 2004
A lot's gone on since this site was last updated over a month ago. On a
national level, George Bush appears to have been elected President of the
United States after four years in office.
On a local level, Tom Potter is Portland's new mayor, a victory that made
national news and demonstrates the power of grassroots campaigns like Mr.
Potter's over big money. Here's a
of Tom Potter's journey to office
from The Oregonian.
There have been a lot of stories in the local papers about Dignity Village
Portrait of Dignity
from The Observer. Patricia Cook,
photographed in the Village's common area, would like everyone to know
she's 58 years old, however, not 71 as reported!
Ryland Auburn's essay
"A Tale of Tent Cities"
has reached the
semi-finalist stage in this year's Berkeley Prize
Competition and favorably compares Portland's urban planning to Los
Finally, there were three keynote speakers at this year's 6th annual
Crisis Innovations Fair, among whom was Dignity Village's Jack Tafari.
For the full
conference report, simply click
Dignity's report is still in preparation.
Monday, October 11, 2004
It's been a week of cancellations, what with this year's
Northwest Social Forum's
cancellation of the Village
Players' performance of
The Filmore Hotel
on the day of performance. See our
and we apologize for any disappointments. The West Coast Tent City Convergence, which had piggybacked on the NWSF, has also been put back until a later date.
Nonetheless, the show went on Saturday night at
Village Players turned in a very credible performance of their acclaimed
play. And tomorrow night's performance at Washington State University is
rated as a "must see" and "pick of the week" in Clark County's Columbian
This week we post new pics on our
visitors page of Wavy Gravy and Jahanara Romney who passed through Dignity Village on their way from Hood River's Hoodstock Festival, also of some of the
newer construction of the cob houses we are building.
Monday, October 5, 2004
Dignity Village welcomed visitors from the
over the weekend. Vice Presidential Green candidate Pat LaMarche visited
many homeless encampments right across the country and with Pacific Green
engaged members of our
community/organization in discussions about many issues, kicked it around
the campfire with us, and spent the night as our guests. We enjoyed their
visit to our village and hope they did, too.
In Street Roots' special election edition, many grassroots organizations
including Dignity Village put good questions to the candidates running for
office. To see how they responded, simply click
Dignity's emissary to Osaka's tent villages recently returned to this
country. Here's Orion Gray's piece about
Japan's Tent Villages
from a recent issue of
The next performance by the Village Players of
The Filmore Hotel is at
on Thursday and we hope to see you there!
Monday, September 27, 2004
Locally, Dignity's Village Players rocked the Bay City Arts Center
Saturday night with their performance of
The Filmore Hotel, part
of Tillamook County's
Homeless Awareness Week,
raising funds for not
only Dignity Village but for Tillamook County's Food Bank and the Bay City Arts
Center. We hope to see you there at Wednesday night's performance
at the Eliot Hall Chapel at Reed College.
Regionally, there's an important convergence coming up on October
15, 16 and 17th. The West Coast Tent City Convergence is being
held on those dates as part of the
Northwest Social Forum
Center and tent city efforts from Denver to Vancouver, B.C., will be
Internationally, this year's
Innovations Fair is also coming up in October in London in the U.K.
The theme of this year's fair is "Homelessness and Loneliness: Building Social Capital in the Twenty-first Century" and will feature a
from Dignity Village.
Monday, September 20, 2004
"Check into Hill's Filmore Hotel"
is in the latest Street Roots.
Here's the Reed College release.
Monday, September 13, 2004
We're pleased to see Security Coordinator Chelle's
OP ED piece in today's
Oregonian, the first time the Oregonian's editorial board has seen fit to
print rebuttals or responses from Dignity Village in said paper.
Chrysler Chelle's OP ED piece saw the light of print. Here's a
responding to an Oregonian article about Mr. Francesconi's solution for
Dignity Village that didn't.
The revival of our play
The Filmore Hotel
may be coming soon to a theater
near you depending, of course, on where you live. If you live in Tillamook
County, you may be aware that the Board of Commissioners has declared
September 20 -- 27
Homeless Awareness Week
which nicely coincides with the
Village Players' two performances at the Bay City Arts Center there.
Finally, we're honoured to post Marian Macindoe's long paper
Dignity: From Tense Beginnings to Legalization, recently submitted to The
London School of Economics and Political Science' Department of Geography
and Environment, before it ultimately sees publication in some prestigious
academic journal. Marian's paper comes from a place of urban planning and
shows a way forward not only for Dignity Village but ultimately for us
Tuesday, August 24, 20004
we’re pleased to post this comprehensive and extensive report
from the recent Osaka conference and thank our friends Jim and Jan who
sent it along. Also we add more pics to our Homeless
in Japan page.
here’s Commissioner Sten’s opinion piece “Buddy,
can you spare a place to live?” and David Lister’s
to homelessness: Buddy, can you create me a job?”
from the local Oregonian, both of which saw print. And here’s
Helen Hill’s response
to Eric Sten’s opinion piece which didn’t.
From The Central City Concern Mayoral Debate from the
Portland Communique of Aug 18, 2004.
finally, we’re pleased to post several new works by Villagers that
grew out of the recent Dignity/WRAP
sessions at the Village on our “Poetry and Writings” page. These
writings are also available in hard copy in Write Around Portland’s
new “Free Write” zine, currently available in a hundred cafes and
coffee shops around town.
Monday, August 9, 2004
Internationally and just in is this
recent Dairin Matsuri festival at Nagai Park, also many pics of our Osaka
comrades' recent conference that we add to our updated Homeless in Japan
page. More reports will follow.
Nationally, poor people are
on the move.
Fiery activist Cheri Honkala and an army of homeless men, women and
children are currently marching across New Jersey and about to descend on
the Republican Convention.
Regionally, NIMBYism blasts our Tent City 4 brothers and sisters. Here's a
from the King County Journal, also Tent City 4's
Locally, we're pleased to post these pics of
Patricia Cook working in
the gardens of Dignity.
Look for Patricia's "Building Community" in an upcoming
Monday, August 2, 2004
Regionally, King County, Washington's Tent City 4
is in the news almost daily. Here's
about our brothers' and sisters' up-coming move
from St. Brendans to nearby Woodinville,
"Inside Seattle's tent city debate" from the latest
Locally, the big news is that the
City OKs $11 million
for affordable housing which may also be found
in Street Roots' latest issue. And while mayoral
candidate Francesconi grandstands and some of the the
money goes to the Transition to Housing project which
includes our friends at JOIN, the vast amount of the
money can only be used for bricks and mortar projects.
Meanwhile Dignity Village continues its straw and
clay approach to building affordable housing. Dignity
thanks the students from Portland State's
Community Development Club
who came out Friday to help us
build the deck for our next cob house. Here's the
Release Crew's latest update, printed in full,
from August's Portland
Homeless people are dying of neglect on the streets all
over the world in ever-increasing numbers, some to the violence of
bush beaters who seek out isolated campers, others to diseases like AIDS. We're
pleased to post this link to photographer Judy Jones' eye-opening spread THE
BONES OF THE HOMELESS WILL RISE TO HAUNT THOSE THAT HAD CLOSED EYES and the letter
she sent this Village.
Note that Ms. Jones says that while taking
these photographs she was so overwhelmed at one point
that she left her camera on a bus bench and never
bought another. It is our hope that some kind
benefactor somewhere send photographer Judy a camera
that she may continue taking her haunting and
Finally, our comrades from Osaka's Nagai Park
Tent Village sent along this photograph
from their recent exhibition taken during July's
Dairin Matsuri festival. The exhibition depicts poor
people's housing alternatives from around the world.
Monday, July 26, 2004
Regionally, Bothel's City Council approves Tent City 4's permitted land
use but sets some pretty stringent conditions. Here's the
from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.
Last week Tacoma/Pierce County's Coalition for the Homeless visited
Dignity Village's coalition OF the homeless to check our model and each
group was probably equally curious about the other. Here's the story
from the Tacoma Tribune.
as Tacoma's service providers check a number of possible models and
options, Winter is coming on fast and might beat a
Many school groups stop by Dignity to help us build and mud our houses, some coming from as far away as Idaho and Alaska. Dignity Village would
like to take this opportunity to thank the staff and students of the
City Survival Summer School
of the Southeast Island School District who came
all the way from Thorne Bay, Alaska, to help us build. Big thanks!
Monday, July 19, 2004
Dignity Village: Creative Asset takes a look at what
art can do for cities and how this relates to the citizens of Dignity
Here's more about the
Mumford Award from the latest issue of
also more about the
ten year plan to combat homelessness in
Helping the Homeless
recent Daily Vanguard.
If you wonder about what happened to Denver's
Tent City Initiative
and how that
magnificent initiative got shot down, check Kimberly Peterson's
We like pics and so apparently do visitors to our site. Here's a
of Dignity's Treasurer and outreach coordinator Tim, looking every inch the
mad, early 18th Century Luddite!
Monday, July 12, 2004
Regionally Tacoma's tent city, a viable model coming from the sidewalks
up, isn't on Pierce County-Tacoma's Coalition for the Homeless' agenda, at
discussions continue about the ten-year plan to end homelessness, jail
remains an option for those people forced to sleep outside in Tacoma, the
least cost-effective "solution" for taxpayers and homeless alike.
Locally Dignity Village and community partners
City Repair Project
were recognized by national organization
for social responsibility last Saturday
evening at Sunnyside Piazza in Portland with the prestigious
Lewis Mumford Award
for development. Here's our
Finally we post some pics from
Watchdawg's memorial service
and a review
of the Village Players' performance of
The Filmore Hotel.
Monday, June 28, 2004
Regionally there’s a push underway to set up another tent city, this time in Tacoma’s Pierce County.
Destiny Village’s set up date is July 10, 2004.
Locally Portland’s discriminatory and unenforceable sit-lie ordinance was overturned by a circuit court judge.
Not one but
two letters responding to The Oregonian’s latest
editorial sophistry saw print in that paper. Portland’s
Right to Sleep campaign also saw some favorable coverage in The Oregonian.
We’re pleased to post pics of the Village Players on stage and in full effect performing Helen Hill’s
The Filmore Hotel.
We’re doubly pleased to announce that Dignity Village along with community partners
City Repair have been selected to receive this year’s prestigious
Lewis Mumford Award for Development
by Architects/Designers/Planners for Social Responsibility.
June 7, 2004
For more about the VBC4 and how you can repair your city, check Stephen
from the summer, 2004, edition of
yes!, a journal of positive futures.
There's some great art work and poetry in the latest
piece by militant artist Alex Lilly.
The kept press writes about the
encampment under the Morrison Bridge
near Dignity's third (not first) site, erroneously refers to Randy McKee as our
Treasurer (new Secretary Randy replaced Secretary Brenda who recently made
the transition to permanent housing), and takes the Village to task for
not transitioning people from the streets into housing quickly enough.
Dignity's current temporary freeze on admissions is necessary as we
reconstruct the Village, tearing down sub-standard structures and
replacing them with beautiful, environmentally-friendly ones as per our
When the kept press writes about us, an editorial is almost
Here's The Oregonian's latest
Wednesday, June 2, 2004
Internationally our Japanese tentcity comrades sent this link
to their Summer Events 2004.
Regionally there’s a wedding at Tent
City 4 in Bothel, WA.
Locally the Village Players performed Helen Hill’s The
Filmore Hotel to acclaim and a packed house at the Pine Street Theater last
Saturday night. For more pre-press about the play, click here.
Many of us appreciate the latest Francesconi
jokes making the rounds. And Dignity Village topped the Super-Special
Eight-Days-Later Election Edition winners’ barometer in last week’s
Willamette Week. Nuff said.
Tuesday, May 25, 2004
Regionally there’s much excitement in the small King County, WA,
City of Bothell where Tent City 4 became a reality last week. The City
of Bothell immediately sues St Brendan’s Catholic Church on whose
beautiful, grassy, cottonwood-shaded property Tent City 4 is currently
Dignity’s village council of course endorses SHARE/WHEEL’s Tent
City 4 action and watches with close attention its upcoming legal fight.
We say, "Go! TC4! Go!"
At Dignity we’re currently building many code compliant, earth-friendly
dwellings in conjunction the 4th annual Village Building Convergence.
For a calendar of this week’s VBC4 events, simply click here.
Dignity’s Village Players are also rehearsing our first play, The
Filmore Hotel. Playwright Helen Hill’s original and compelling work has
great promise and everyone’s cordially invited to attend.
Friday, May 14, 2004
There's a great flap in Seattle over the proposed Tent City 4 location, but none-the-less SHARE/WHEEL's
direct action to save lives goes through on Monday, May 17. We'll see you there!
Monday, May 10, 2004
There's so much going on at Dignity Village lately that we add an events
to our site for more efficient coordination.
Locally The Willamette Week endorses Tom Potter's campaign for
of Portland and, if local polls are accurate, it looks like a runoff and a
for the office of mayor of this town.
The city and county
begin looking at new ways to provide
affordable housing for the poor.
Regionally SHARE/WHEEL's plan for Seattle's fourth tent city
was met with
by local property owners who castigate King County
Executive Ron Sims and file a
Meanwhile TC4's set up date has been delayed until
And oh the wolfpack journalists! Here's a recent and somewhat accurate story
about the Dignity model transplanted to other places.
Monday, May 3, 2004
There's lots about the upcoming Village Building Convergence in the latest
street roots. Here's Joanne Zuhl's front-page lead story
Dignity's visionary architect Mark Lakeman is running for Commissioner
Randy Leonard's seat on City Council. Mark says it's
time to end the social holocaust.
Watchdawg's memorial service
was well attended yesterday. Here's a pic of
the Watchdawg we all know courtesy of The Larson Legacy's archives.
Vancouver, British Columbia's Hope Village Council recently sent along its
proposal for a tent city,
which we post in full. Dignity Village of course
wishes the HVC all success in its endeavor!
And finally Dignity's Village Players are performing playwright Helen
The Filmore Hotel
at the Pine Street Theater later this month. It's
the compelling true story of the gentrification of a hotel
and the displacement of a community. Don't miss
Monday, April 26, 2004
memorial service will be held at Dignity Village this
coming Sunday at 2pm.
For more information, phone our office at (503) 281 1604.
We recently reconstructed our computer network at the village which now
includes 40 gigabyte hard drives, Barton 3200 AMD CPU, and 256-512 megabyte
RAM. We've also upgraded our Web site which now has its very own search
The first issue of Our Dignity, the village paper, recently saw
publication. Here it is
Some of Portland's mayoral candidates talk about the diminishing stock
of affordable housing in the latest Skanner. Here's what they had to
Monday, April 19, 2004
Some of Portland's mayoral candidates weigh in on homeless issues in the
latest street roots.
would increase the stock of affordable
housing and roll back the current anti-poor laws. Brad Taylor would also
increase the stock of affordable housing and also fling away the
Contender Tom Potter likes that we've taken control of our lives and are
helping ourselves and other homeless people, a fact that seems to disturb
some service providers and mess with their raison d' etre. Commissioner
Jim Francesconi, on the other hand, doesn't think Dignity's pragmatic
approach is the best solution for homelessness and says conditions in our
clean, safe, well-run encampment are
"less than subhuman."
Democratic presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich recently visited Dignity
Village and talked about affordable housing, living wage jobs, the state
of the nation in general. Here's what the candidate has to say about
Dignity Village's council recently formally endorsed SHARE/WHEEL's
proposed Tent City 4 in Seattle which goes forward on May 6. For more
information about SHARE/WHEEL's direct action to save lives, kindly
contact either SHARE -- (206) 448 7889 -- or WHEEL -- (206) 956 0334.
And what's this? A curmudgeon? A Luddite? A chief Rasta? We like
Westword's news editor Amy Haimerl's
honesty and also because she took the trouble to spend a day and night at
Dignity Village to research and write her article. Amy's companion piece
looks at tent cities across the nation.
Monday, April 12, 2004
Dignity Village was awarded a certificate of recognition
last week for "winning designation as a campground due to their
tireless struggle" at TC3's 4th year anniversary celebration
by SHARE/WHEEL's TC3 Executive Committee,
also a trophy for being "#1 in camping."
We are pleased to post a copy of the recent resolution
in support of a fourth tent city
in Seattle, also their
call to action on May 6.
For more information and how you can help out, simply click
Tent City Initiative take their proposal for a tent
city before their city council today.
DERA's (Downtown Eastside Residents Association) proposal
for a Hope Village, based in part on Dignity, goes before
city council in Vancouver, B.C., on April 22nd.
We wish them both success.
Locally we push for the Right
to Sleep. And Jim Francesconi's
But we thought Commissioner Francesconi would never join
our camp because he's rich and has plenty of assets!
Monday, March 29, 2004
played at Dignity Village last night to rave reviews
by all fortunate enough to see it.
Tomas McCabe kindly left a copy of the film for our
library that all who live in Portland's
"Jerusalem of homeless encampments"
may eventually see this important work. Thanks, Tomas!
Some of the brothers and sisters from Seattle's TC3 visited Dignity
last week and presented our council with this
invited us to attend their fourth anniversary celebration.
Big thanks, brothers and sisters!
Meanwhile, Portland's million dollar mayoral candidate Jim Francesconi
introduced a rewrite
of Portland's exclusion law which will allow even the concessionaires
at golf courses to exclude those engaged in big money drug deals! Of
course, this legislation as rewritten is likelier to impact on Portland's
poor forced to sleep in public parks rather than drug dealers on
golf courses and will allow police, security guards and yes, even
golf course concessionaires, to arrest, try, and convict suspected
offenders. Nice one, Jim!
Monday, March 22, 2004
Last Monday Denver's homeless
rallied at their City Hall, calling loudly
for a tent city. This Wednesday Portland's homeless rally at our City Hall
and call loudly for the
Right to Sleep for all homeless people. We hope to
see you there, too!
The new, award-winning film Bum's Paradise is being screened at the
Village as well as at a number of other local venues. For a complete list
of venues and showtimes, click here.
Bum's Paradise is currently touring
the West Coast and being shown from Berkeley to Seattle. For more about
this important, awareness raising film, check the filmmaker's site by
simply clicking here.
Dignity Village is currently gathering
materials to build its own
ecologically friendly, code-compliant housing. We also seek funds to
achieve our aims and do this in a number of ways.
One way we raise money is by marketing our
popular tee shirts. Digni-tees
cost $15 and are available at the Village as well as at EarthTones Imports
at Saturday Market. Be aware that the full cost of our tees benefits not
only Dignity Village but also the wider homeless community, that there are
no administrative costs. All the money we raise goes to the cause!
Finally, Keith Vann's latest Street Roots
column dispels many of the myths
promulgated by the misinformed.
Monday, March 8, 2004
Portland's homeless recently won twice -- Dignity won its designation and
the exclusion of some of the public from public parks was overturned on
Constitutional grounds. Here's the
Winners & Losers
barometer from the
Willamette Week and
Happily Ever After from the Portland Mercury.
Soon Dignity's embarking on a massive building project which starts in May
with the 4th Annual
Village Building Convergence. Here's a
list of tools
and building supplies our building and maintenence committee is gathering
toward that time and any donated tools or materials would be greatly
Monday, March 1, 2004
Congratulatory letters pour through our site after the stunning win last
week at City Hall, a victory not just for Dignity Village or Portland's
poor but poor people everywhere. We were referred to as a "small band of rebels trying something that
God forbid might actually work" but nonethless won our designation as a
campground and were
This week we post our
release and a commentary from the
a copy of the City Council's
resolution which legalizes Dignity,
street roots, also one
from The Oregonian's
Service and Statistical Report for 2003, all in no
We're pleased to post the text of Denver's mighty
Proposal for the
creation of a tent city, a document recently received and still under
review by our organization.
Our Japanese comrades recently updated their
to include some English.
Kindly note the
for signatures for a petition for the release of
Comrade K, arrested for providing a mailing address for local homeless
Monday February 23, 2004
In this post, a copy of this wonderful
letter of support to Mayor
Vera Katz and the City Commisioners from classic American writer Ursula K.
Le Guin. Ms Le Guin's letter arrived during a strategy session for our
upcoming legal fight at City Hall this Thursday and was passed from
hand to hand with much approval.
Letters of support, of course, are always welcome and appreciated. They
should be sent to Mayor Vera Katz and
Commissioners Erik Sten, Randy Leonard,
Dan Saltzman and
Jim Francisconi. Also appreciated will
be your presence for this crucial vote at City Hall come the day. The
day's this Thursday, February 23, at 2:30 PM and we hope to see you there.
Dignity Village generally gets its best coverage locally in popular papers
like street roots, the Portland Mercury, The Portland Tribune, nationally
in papers like The New York Times. Randy Gragg's "Preserving Dignity" came
out over the weekend in The Oregonian, the paper with those consistently
awful editorials about us. Randy's
is beautifully researched, accurate, the finest piece written about this
Village from an architectural perspective since
Guerilla City appeared in
Monday February 16, 2004
Street roots' latest issue hit the streets yesterday
and is just jam pack, full up with all the latest
tent city news.
Tony Robinson's thoughtful
saw print not long ago in the Rocky Mountain News.
Monday February 9, 2004
Tent City Initiative
refines plans for a tent city, not an
says the Rocky Mountain News.
Dignity, of course, wishes Denver's homeless all success in their endeavor.
Portland's homeless community rallied during the
Big Freeze. This
from the Daily Vanguard.
Monday February 2, 2004
could save Dignity Village? Here's the
language in full of ORS 446.252,
Exhibit C of our
Proposal to the City of Portland.
If the Village's response time to enquiries coming
through this Web site isn't at its usual rapid fire
rate, please understand that our communications system
is currently under repair from damage done to it by
the cold of the recent Big Freeze.
Our friends and comrades of Osaka's Nagai Park
tentcity send along these pics
of recent anti-war
demonstrations in Kyoto and even contribute a
Monday January 26, 2004
about Dignity Village turned up not long ago in Italy's Libero magazine.
Denver's homeless start up their own
tent city initiative
which immediately draws fire from the
Denver Post's editors in this "can of worms"
The Oregonian, on the other hand, refuses to acknowledge -- let alone
publish -- our
response to their latest
But we post it anyway!
We post loads of pics of the recent
Monday January 19, 2004
Orion Gray's update
sees print in street roots'
latest issue illustrated with this
pic of an
interview with Osaka's one Rebel Jill. The name "Jill," incidentally, comes from a Chinese ideogram which translates approximately as "self-streaming." We post many more pics
of Osaka's tentcities courtesy of the recently returned Dr Wendy Kohn and
Heather Mosher of Kwamba Productions.
This article saw ink in the last
Nojiren Newsletter. The article is about Dignity Village but reflects on
of Tokyo's fifth year of action. It arrived at the Village last week with a
gift of twenty "Pride on the Streets" tee shirts sent "from
the hearts and souls of the women and men of Nojiren" and this
of Yamamoto-san printing the shirts. We give thanks!
Dignity Village extends heartfelt thanks to our many friends and supporters near and far who are always there for us and never hesitate to step forward when asked. Big thanks! Dignity Village even thanks its detractor
Lars Larsen who, in his own way, keeps Dignity in the public eye and shines the light of protekshan upon we.
Monday January 12, 2004
In a week dominated by stories of
inclement weather and Winter storms, KPTV 12
accidentally stumbles on a real
story. This story
about our village came out in a recent edition of The
Christian Science Monitor.
We post a recent press release about
our new fire stations,
more pics from our
Osaka comrades. We hold off posting the Village's
response to a recent Oregonian
editorial until it has a chance
to see print.
Monday January 5, 2004
In response to a recent
fire at Dignity,
villagers and friends from
City Repair built three
fire stations this past weekend. Each station features a rainwater
catchment system with gutters, downspouts, plumbed rain
barrels, and fire line buckets. Each station includes equipment
cabinets with fire extinguishers, fire safety info, a fire axe.
All are built using recycled equipment and materials and have
photovoltaic lighting systems and living roofs.
This report from emissary Orion in
Japan, new pics courtesy of our
about the dismantling of an encampment
was spotted by a former villager.
in Los Angeles,
of course, was an early Dignity inspiration.
Monday December 29, 2003
There's so much happening in the world today.
Here are some pics just in
Wendy and Heather
in Osaka, Japan. Wendy and Heather are in Osaka to film the
visit of Dignity's emissary Orion Gray who is a guest of our
brothers and sisters at the tent village in Nagai Park.
More reports will follow.
from the Sacramento Bee about
Billy McManus' trials and crosses sent along by
Dignity's friend Paula.
Paula says McManus "went to court originally for 3
camping tickets. Jury decided 'not guilty' on one
count. The other counts, hung jury (I think one juror
saying 'guilty'). Kelly Tanalepe (attorney) used the
necessity defense. Then the city took the hung jury
counts to retrial. This time they brought the big
guns, Samuel Jackson, THE City Attorney and his
entourage to prosecute. The Judge would not allow the
necessity defense to be brought up. The city quickly
won. Then those two guilty charges, defense took to
Appellate Court which they did not win, or appeal
refused (I'll have to verify which). So original
charges were 30 days in jail, Stay Away order for the
American River Parkway and Sutter's Landing, and 3
years informal probation. His most recent 6 camping
tickets that Tommy Clinkenbeard, Public Defender, was
defending for Billy, were just dropped."
"In the [accompanying] articles," Paula says, "Billy
is accused of 'choosing to be homeless', 'service
resistant,' 'militant'? He is a very pleasant man. I
asked him a couple months ago if he had a place
indoors with a little yard for his dogs, wouldn't he
choose to live indoors? Of course he wouldn't hesitate
to choose 'indoors'. It was even presented in court
about Billy's love for his dogs, they are his family.
He couldn't consider abandoning them. For what, a two
week stay in a shelter? Poster boy for the homeless?
Actually he has been the main target, scapegoat, for
the police and rangers. They have put immense effort
into harassing him in particular, and their efforts
toward assuring Billy lost. I haven't gotten the
final estimate of how much it cost the city to fight
Billy this hard, but we got intelligent estimate
before that it would cost them, probably $200,000 in
the end, and I don't know if that is including Samuel
Jackson's salary portion. Do you think they may have
considered that for $200,000 they could have bought
Billy a nice, nice house with a big yard, outright?
They never offered him any service that would have
gotten him and his dogs indoors. I haven't talked to
him today, so I haven't confirmed if he will
definitely have to go to jail. I'll try to find out
if his dogs are alright, too. Here's the two articles,
letters to editor can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org."
Over the last week's Oregonian, first
"Fire strikes Dignity Village..."
which in turn elicits the
"Fire should serve as warning,"
this time with the finger of warning firmly wagged at
Portland's City Council.
Monday December 22, 2003
The results of recent village elections are the topic of this
We're all pretty pleased with the new council configuration.
Dignity's council is now 13 councillors broad. Ron Wold, former
village security chief, is Dignity's new chairman. Jack Tafari
moved to the vice chairman slot while Brenda Gray and Tim McCarthy
retained their seats as secretary and treasurer respectively.
Meanwhile, the City has until January 10th to respond Lars Larson's
complaint. For more about "radio ratings monster" Larson's bizarre
motivations, here's what
Chuck Currie has to say.
Monday December 15, 2003
Sarah Linn's AP story hits the national newswire and turns up in various
newspapers around the
Beware of those
that give 85 percent and more of every dollar collected to the
telemarketing firms they employ. Be aware also that 100 percent of
every dollar that Dignity raises goes for the benefit of its
membership and the wider homeless community, pure homeless
Monday December 8, 2003
This week we maintain our site, write grants, await word on our
proposal, and post a few
Monday December 1, 2003
The fight over the I-405 corridor
"Dignity Village: a social experiment reaches a crossroads"
turned up initially in a smalltown paper a state away.
Now it seems to be turning up
Monday November 24, 2003
People's Food Co-op
for the holiday feast,
also those who made last weekend's
Carousel event a resounding success.
reminiscence "Dignity Village - Nonviolent Warriors for Homeland Peace & Justice"
should see ink in next month's
We submit our own co-written
"Dignity Village Submits Proposal to City"
to the Portland Alliance.
In other news, Arizona's homeless and others
The good news is that number crunchers announced recently a 0.4-percent drop
in Oregon's high unemployment rate. Also good is that the village
Job Line is up and fully functioning.
Monday November 10, 2003
There is an outpouring of letters responding to the
Oregonian's latest editorial, some of which see print.
Eli Spivak's professionalism and patience pay off with this
online guest column.
Street roots' director Israel Bayer's
letter is printed, as is
Lydia Doleman had less fortune, but we post her
Professor Susan Finley's rethink of the politics of homelessness
The faces of dignity,
was recently published in Qualitative Studies in Education.
This work we post along with its companion piece,
The power of space.
Our recent proposal to the city
Tomorrow we're hosting a
free veterinary clinic
and Saturday we are attending a performance of the play
Monday November 3, 2003
The Oregonian's recent myopic
attacks the village and says time's up.
Here's one response to that editorial
won't see the light of print.
Thankfully the Oregonian's aren't the only editors in town.
Ranting N. Irishman
attacks everything from DV to the fair city of Portland itself!
Oh, well, Portland's loss is Boston's gain.
street roots reports
the sweeping of Village Integrity, the
facts about our new
and news of a hurdle overcome by another homeless
village in Berkeley, CA.
article appeared in
L'espresso, Italian television
picks up the story. Stay tuned to Italian TV network
for news of an upcoming one-hour special about poverty
in America later this month.
Monday October 27, 2003
is what London's Guardian newspaper
calls us while the Oregonian... well, here's Dave Austin's
about Dignity Village for that paper. And here's
from Italy's L'espresso.
We presented our new
Dignity Village Proposal, 2004-
to Mayor Katz and
all four city commissioners last Wednesday and now await the City's
response. What we propose is ambitious and our proposal's an impressive
piece of work, a starting place as Commissioner Sten says.
Local conservative talkshow host Lars Larson, possibly in a bid to
boost his program's ratings, filed a code complaint with the City last
week against Dignity Village. Building code is all about safety and as per
our proposal, we hope to come into code compliance soon. Dignity Village
is much safer than living under a bridge.
Why did Dignity Village succeed in Portland while a similar effort
failed in Sacramento? Jason MacCannell's recent
study, A Tale of Two Tent Cities,
the tactics, social geographies and political cultures of these two West Coast
Our good friends and allies at crossroads are doing some
impressive work on the
Grassroots Ten-year Plan to End Homelessness.
Here's the latest news.
Dignity Village gets many visitors and this week we post pics of
mayoral candidate Tom Potter,
supporter Kathy Larson,
of the New York Times, and a recent visitor and
delegate from Osaka's
Nagai Park Tent Village.
Monday October 20, 2003
This well-balanced article
came out in the latest edition of street roots and this
letter saw print in the
We post a few more pics on our
Monday October 13, 2003
Our new proposal, due for presentation to the City
this Wednesday, arouses some interest in the local
media as "Finding a little dignity" on
OPB News shows.
A poorly thought-out
to the editor from the
director of the Goose Hollow Family Shelter first sees
print in the Portland Tribune and is later wickedly
in the Oregonian. To read
one response to Ronald Williams' letter, click
Meanwhile we await the visit of a comrade from the
Nagai Park tentcity in Osaka, Japan, and the arrival
of copies of a recent edition of the Italian
L'espresso which we hear features a piece about our
village. Now if only we could read Italian...
Monday October 6, 2003
We hear murmers in one
paper this week about a study group formed in the village -- our GED study
group apparently isn't newsworthy -- but the real news this week is Sarah
Kershaw's balanced and well-researched article in the Sunday New York
Times. Here's the article online
with one of Alan S. Weiner's pics in full colour and also what the article
itself looks like
in all its pulpy glory.
Wednesday October 1, 2003
In Friday's PDX Updates in the Portland Tribune, there's a great photo of our strawbale house. Here's a pic of what the inside of what that beautiful example of affordable housing looks like. We also post photos just in from Bologna of the woman who may be Portland's next mayor, Dignity's own
Jada Mae Langloss,
and of Tibetan Lama
who blessed this village not so long ago with his presence and his prayers. Mark Lakeman, City Repair and Dignity's visionary architect, accurately describes what Dignity is and has become this way:
"Dignity Village is the ONLY model of participatory, self-governed community with an ecological vision in this town. It is the ONLY walkable community, not dependent on or invaded by cars, with a localized economy which encourages communication and cultural development. It is also the most efficient self-help model for homeless people in the nation."
Here's a news item about the way other homeless people not blessed with a village or adequate housing in Portland are living. And finally, here's the Oregonian's predictably dire editorial which rightly commends the placement service JOIN's laudable efforts at getting people into what affordable housing there is but wrongly denigrates our vision and minimizes our efforts to help ourselves and others. Check our site Monday coming up for a perhaps less-biased view about Dignity Village in an up-coming article in the New York Times.
Monday September 22, 2003
A number of stories appeared in the local press last week about the
expiration of our lease at Sunderland Yard including this "treading water"
assessment in the Oregonian.
The Portland Tribune writes about Dignity's eleventh
hour and also a short item about
our strawbale house and last week's Build It Green! home tour. And as we
begin talks with the City about housing some of our membership, we reflect
upon the housing situation of our brother and sister tencityites in Toronto
a year after TCTO's sweep and take down.
Monday September 15, 2003
We've been getting lots of great letters of support lately and
this week Dignity Village posts a letter
to our supporters and friends.
This solid editorial
just came out in
We also post poems
by the Out Loud Poets
and we begin talks with the
Oregon Department of Kick
Ass about a suitable night for an outdoor film fest.
Monday September 8, 2003
Here's an update by visitor
who dropped by the village not too long ago.
feels it needn't insure that everyone has enough to eat,
this from The Nation.
Meanwhile, villagers look to other countries for answers. This
item turned up on the
Korean Central News Agency
newswire about a study group headed by villagers
JP Cupp and Travis Dandy.
And finally, has anyone seen Turtle?
This lost village dog is greatly missed and if you see
him, please phone or email Dignity Village.
Monday August 25, 2003
won't stand for it at all!
This Thursday Dignity's hosting an
anti-war poetry reading and potluck
picnic. It's absolutely free and everybody's welcome. Bring food, poetry
and songs to share if you can. For more information, click
here. To find out
where we are, just click on the URL.
Monday August 18, 2003
cracks down and
sweeps the Peace Camp. At Dignity,
activist Tim McCarthy gets out the homeless
and Jada Mae announces her
while downtown six activists get arrested at the
at City Hall.
This Wednesday everyone's welcome to a paint party at Dignity Village
to finish our
It goes from dawn 'til done and we hope to see you there!
Monday August 11, 2003
Big thanks to Ayleen, Joel and all the good mechanics at the
Community Cycling Center who came out and helped us fix our
bikes at the second annual Dignity Village
Bike Repair Day!
Monday August 3, 2003
Dignity's first strawbale house
is entered in Portland's second annual
Build It Green!
Monday July 28, 2003
Dignity's move to buy land meets with nuff
"The NIMBY syndrome is alive and well and spreading faster than
cockroaches in a boarding house" a Canadian supporter comments.
Professor Susan Finley's work with Dignity Village gets a
mention in another Oregonian
of a soon-to-be published story about our first strawbale house
and a photo of Uncle Ben.
Monday July 21, 2003
wins over its neighbors.
And we add a few more pics of visitors.
Monday July 14, 2003
This week we simplify our web site, but dial in next Monday
for the latest updates.
Monday July 7, 2003
Many voices got heard in City Hall
last week, among them local
criminal Keith Vann's.
Also from the latest street roots, more about our right to
organize plus a solid
at Dignity, a new game becomes the latest
Monday June 30, 2003
Street roots interviews KBOO 90.7 FM's news
journo Orion Isis Gray this
issue who talks about the importance of Dignity among other things.
Dignity was there in force at City Hall last week supporting crossroads'
effort to repeal the camping ban once and for all with their
Right To Sleep
campaign. More about the latest
body count and Portland's
And the Oregonian's most recent and predictably sour
takes Sisters of the Road to task for organizing and empowering the poor.
Monday June 23, 2003
"It's Not Like That" says
The Portland Mercury and other more sensible voices. "A New Vision of Housing Transforms
a Wasteland" reports the Bay Area's
Street Spirit. And to
complete our beautiful strawbale structure, this Saturday we are
having a work party.
Monday June 16, 2003
Talks begin with a friendly seller about Dignity's possible
In the wake of Jessica Williams' murder, the Oregonian's latest
links Dignity and the Peace Camp to homicide and
calls for a greater application of the "stick" of enforcement against
Good Samaritan Greg West's visit to the village makes the
And Portland's "terreno libero" is featured in this month's
"Nelle case dei senza casa".
Monday June 2, 2003
Is Dignity's green, sustainable urban
model the start of a
better society? street
roots certainly seems to think so!
Monday May 26, 2003
In the current issue of Portland's street roots, John Hubbird calls
for "two, three, many tent
cities" while Genny Nelson busts some shots at the
Meanwhile downtown at the
Peace Camp the struggle continues.
Monday May 19, 2003
This week we simply post more pics of
the building of a strawbale house.
Monday May 12, 2003
A strawbale house goes up at Dignity Village as part of this week's
Convergence. Two new articles about
homelessness come out in the Portland
Monday May 5, 2003
This week there are articles about Dignity Village in
the Dog Nose News;
even the kept press ran a
In Sacramento our brothers and sisters fight against
the camping ban.
Monday April 28, 2003
This weekend we began building a strawbale
house and set up the village job line.
Monday April 21, 2003
Opening up a second front? Camping With Vera talks about the "Hicks" decision
and the Camping Ban that never really went away.
The Bay Area's Street Spirit reports on
the continuing Dignity saga.
Monday April 7, 2003
SHOC pressures Sacramento to set up a
More about that city's homeless agenda in
We start a new photo page.
Monday March 31, 2003
April's new look, bi-monthly street roots hits the sidewalks. Commissioner
Sten throws his hat into the ring in
A number of homeless groups march
against the war. Dignity Village stands in
solidarity with our brothers
and sisters in Toronto.
Monday March 24, 2003
This week we post a copyleft preview of street roots' new column
Tent City News & World Report,
coming out bi-monthly starting in April.
Monday March 10, 2003
This week we post a letter
to Ontario's Attorney General and stories from the
Daily Tidings in Ashland where
the homeless, apparently, are revolting. Better late than
never is this exchange between
Sacramento's Homeless Organizing Committee and the Mayor and City
Council there. More about Sacramento's tent city effort in this month's
Meanwhile the "tent cities" discussion continues in
Magazine and elsewhere. And here's a couple of colorful
pics from our brochure distribution
party with a promise of more to come.
Wednesday March 5, 2003
This week, due to technical difficulties, we only post one important
Monday February 24, 2003
Sacramento's homeless try to help themselves. An
update from Paula
Monday February 17, 2003
Today there's an
action in Sacramento, tomorrow
party at Dignity Village. And one day in
the not-too-distant future, this
entry will appear
in a dictionary of modern social movements.
Monday February 10, 2003
Dignity celebrates a graduation
and mourns a tragic
Monday February 3, 2003
A letter to the
Sacramento News and Review says "Let them live",
a response to "It takes a different village" and the
recent killings there.
Monday January 27, 2003
Last week's peace march drew thousands of people and
Dignity was there.
This story from the Portland Observer.
Monday January 20, 2003
The Sacramento News and Review takes a stand
and endorses the tent village model.
Dignity was one of many organizations that endorsed last
Peace and Justice Rally.
And we add more pics to our visitors page.
Monday January 13, 2003
We post a great poem and more
letters to the Oregonian's
Meanwhile people are dying in Sacramento
but allowing a tentcity in Muir Park would violate city code!
Monday January 6, 2003
Marc Jolin: Defending Dignity Village
sees little ink in the
Oregonian but at least a virtual
appears. We're in December's
Waking Planet Chronicles
goes to press in the
newsletter in the UK.
Meanwhile in Portland there's a groundswell of popular support as
people respond to our ads
and brochures with many letters.
Monday December 30, 2002
We get letters
responding to the Oregonian's mean-spirited
We post ours but wonder if they'll ever see the light of print.
And here's a map of
where we are.
Monday December 23, 2002
Dignity Village is no solution in the opinion of the Oregonian's
If you have a different view, please
write and let them know.
We post more photos and a short
by Kwamba Productions of the Dignity Village documentary.
Monday December 16, 2002
Lee Thomas talks about one option for Portland's homeless in today's
And we add new pics of our visitors.
Monday December 9, 2002
Dignity tries a little publicity
says in today's story. And the mighty Uprite Dub Arkestra releases their
"Land and Freedom
Tuesday December 3, 2002
Dignity's Hood River excursion finds its way into the
in "Students scale the barricades in the name of dignity."
Monday November 11, 2002
Dignity Village residents enjoy a dinner and a show from the
Hood River News.
More about Les
The Power of Love.
Photos of the outing to Hood River.
Monday November 4, 2002
Dignity thanks Hood River.
And we post more pictures of our
Monday October 21, 2002
Social psychologist Robert Biswas-Diener's Report to Dignity
Village indicates that comparatively Dignity Villagers are better off
in a number of ways than the Fresno homeless who camp out, who in turn
are better off than the Fresno homeless in shelters, but that we haven't
caught up with the Two Thirds World yet. To read the full report, click
Dignity's friend Red Emma is having a
party. The lyrics to her song Welcome to America we include among
the writings, poems, and songs by villagers and friends.
Monday October 14, 2002
Kwamba Productions' trailer for the Dignity documentary hits the film fest
And Dignity co-founder John Hubbird was beaten, jailed and released without
charge at the protest in Eugene.
Monday October 7, 2002
Director Mark Steighner brings the cast of Les Miserables
to Dignity Village.
The story makes the
Hood River News.
The director and cast invite Dignity to opening night!
Monday September 23, 2002
The Duke of Dignity Village makes the cover of
Willamette Week which rates a note
from our chairman.
The UK's Institute for Social Inventions
features Dignity in its
book Future Perfect as does Seattle's
Real Change News.
of Bill Bradbury's visit.
And a prototype of what we intend to build is featured in
Monday, September 16, 2002
Dignity's granted an
what remains is to negotiate terms of our lease.
We make the front page of
(again!) and gain some favorable national
story by John Hubbird
about the rising in Eugene.
Monday, August 26, 2002
At the village's request, Dignity supporter Lee Larson, who happened
to be traveling to Japan, visited some of the tent cities there as an
emissary or ambassador of Dignity Village to our Japanese brothers
To read his fascinating report, click here.
"Most of us have been watched by Geheimnis Polizei or state
violences like the FBI or COINTELPRO... Some day, I hope you will be
able to see your comrades friendly faces on our web site." -- Rebel Jill.
To see a digitally-masked photo of Lee Larson, click
Monday, August 12, 2002
A new, superficially "balanced" story in the
fails to point out that many of us work outside the
village and casts a pall of gloom over our situation
vis-a-vis sites. A tongue-in-cheek
solution to the
siting dilemma appears in this week's Willamette
And we update our disclaimer with photos of
the suspected perpetrators.
Monday, August 5, 2002
New photos just in of the New World Flag
presentation ceremony. And we're selling the
Monday, July 29, 2002
Dignity Village awarded the New World Flag.
New photos just in. And we
Wine, Dine & Bovine at Intel's Global
Aviation Jet Hanger at the
Kows for Kids
Monday, July 22, 2002
Shantytowns a viable option?
Now magazine feature's Toronto's tent city.
An open letter to Toronto's
editorial gives Dignity a favourable
And Dignity Village is being awarded the
New World Flag.
Monday, July 15, 2002
And we issue a disclaimer.
Monday, July 1, 2002
We give thanks.
Monday, June 17, 2002
The text of our recent
to the City.
"Dignity's Last Stand -- Again!" appears in this week's Portland
but Dignity doan done yet, Dignity is a hard ting fe dead!
And Phil Busse got the date wrong for our
Monday, June 10, 2002
A slew of new articles hit the local press
this week. There was some quality reportage on
Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon writes a strong
letter in support of Dignity. And our Land
& Freedom benefit takes shape.
Monday, June 3, 2002
YM Magazine's Molly Rosen writes about Portland's
homeless youth, one of whom lived for a time in Dignity. And as the July
1st move date approaches, Dignity Village is having a
Monday, May 27, 2002
This month Dignity's featured in YM magazine, on Next TV in Canada and
other countries (although not this one), and in
Architecture magazine. New pics
just in of our Kow party.
Monday, May 6, 2002
Dignity's partnership with EMS makes
the front page of street roots.
Seattle's Pastor Rich Lang writes a letter
to President Bush. Seattle's churches
step up to the plate. Photos
of our new banner. And Robert "Bathrobespiere" Norse sums up this
weekend's Summit in Santa Cruz.
Monday, April 29, 2002
Willamette Week outs our primary site
a little prematurely as far as the Site Development Team's concerned.
We have pictures just in
from Digsville Farm's new site plus the official farm
Monday, April 15, 2002
Monday, April 8, 2002
Red Emma's lyrics get posted at last.
The earliest known photo of the Homeless Front.
And last but not least, Dignity Village now has its own
Friday, April 5, 2002
Place for Dignity from the Spring 2002 issue of Yes! magazine
Monday, April 1, 2002
tent city can build on its legal foundation -
Seattle becomes the first West Coast city to adopt a progressive policy
towards its tentcity as Tent City III there becomes "legal."
in Santa Cruz, CA, set for May 3-4, 2002.
Monday, March 25, 2002
Homeless Summit in Santa Cruz, CA, imminent.
New page of photos from our Tech Day at WSU.
Monday, March 18, 2002
The Radical Cheerleaders, to whom Dignity lost out in last year's Anarchist
Awards in the "Best Choreography of a
Protest" category, recently attended
a village council meeting. Here are some of their
cheers. Also Allegations from Old Town, a statement by artist
Monday, March 11, 2002
History: Peace and Damnation.
A new poem by JP Cupp.
Monday, March 4, 2002
Two new articles on our articles page.
Tuesday, February 19, 2002
OSPIRG's National Student Campaign against Hunger
and Homelessness will be holding a
photography exhibit about homelessness and a
benefit art auction
for Dignity Village.
Friday, February 8, 2002
A Letter to the Mayor and City Council
Monday, February 4, 2002
A song by Utah Phillips.
New article added.
Monday, January 14, 2002
A new poem by Coyote Rose.
New photos added.
Monday, January 7, 2002
New article has been added to the articles
Monday, December 17th, 2001
Added more new photos.
Monday, December 10th, 2001
Added a new page of photos.
Monday, December 3rd, 2001
Three new articles have been added to the articles
Thursday, November 1st, 2001
In a close vote held on Monday, Dignity Village members voted to remain at their current location
for the next six months. Dignity is currently located at Sunderland Yard, a leaf composting site
owned by the City of Portland. Until this week, village members had planned to move from the
city owned site to a privately owned site in inner southeast Portland to make way for leaf composting
scheduled to begin at Sunderland Yard this month. A recent deal with the City has made it possible
for the Village to remain at the city-owned site. In exchange, Dignity will compensate the City for the
cost of composting leaves elsewhere. Click here for recent commentary.
Saturday, October 27th, 2001
Over the past week, Dignity Village has engaged in negotiations with two separate land owners to
lease a plot of land to be used as a new site for the Village. Dignity will move from its current city-owned
site at the end of this month to make way for scheduled leaf composting. Dignity Village has decided
not to move to the first of the privately owned sites, located in 3000 block just south of Powell Boulevard,
after meeting harsh resistance from local residence at a Creston-Kenilworth neighborhood association
meeting held last Tuesday evening. The Village will, instead, move to the second privately owned site
at an undisclosed location in east Portland. Dignity residents and supporters will begin moving tents
and people to the new site next week.
Click here to read more about the Creston-Kenilworth neighborhood
association meeting, or click here to read coverage of the move in
Sunday, October 21th, 2001
The Oregonian reports on the current legal status of Portland's camping ban, and the Portland Mercury
reports on life at Dignity's current site at Sunderland Yard and attempts by the village to find a new site
by the new November 1st deadline. Click here to read more.
Monday, October 15th, 2001
We have added two new pages of photos.
Tuesday, October 9th, 2001
Dignity Village has made steady
progress towards realizing the "sustainable green urban village" of its
dreams, and performed important work of real value to the Portland
community along the way. But now it is facing another hearing before City
Council on October 24, and another forced move on October 31 from its
current location at the city-owned Sunderland Composting Yard.
Click here for an update on these recent events.
Sunday, October 7th, 2001
With one month left before Dignity needs to move to a new site, villagers and supporters have been
working diligently to find a new site to which the village can relocate. Recently, members of Portland
State University's student senate voted to support relocating the village temporarily on to a vacant lot
on the university campus.
to read more from the Oregonian.
A note: This is the first update to the site in the past few weeks. However, as things begin to heat up again
we will update this site more often. Check back for new updates to the site in the next week.
Saturday, September 15th, 2001
We have added a more comprehensive listing of articles covering the events surround Dignity Village over
the past couple of weeks. Click here to take a look.
Tuesday, September 11th, 2001
Police arrested two of protesters gathered at "The Field of Dreams" this afternoon. The police issued citations
to other protesters gathered at the site in protest of Portland's continued enforcement of its anti-camping law.
Portland's camping ban was ruled unconstitutional last year by Multnomah County Circuit Court Justice
Stephen L. Gallagher, Jr. To view the text of Judge Gallagher's ruling,
For more details from the Oregonian,
Monday, September 10th, 2001
Activists, including members of the Homeless Front and members of Dignity Village, are camping at a site
called the Field of Dreams tonight in an ongoing protest of Portland's camping ban. This site was chosen by
the HLF because it was chosen as a possible site by Dignity Village and rejected by the City for no discernable
reason. The Field of Dreams is located between SW Naito and SW Harbor at SW Grant St. The activists are
inviting supporters to come out and camp with them for the duration of protest.
Click here for a map showing the location of the Field of Dreams.
Sunday, September 9th, 2001
Portland police confronted roughly thirty homeless activists this morning. The homeless activists, including
members of the Homeless Liberation Front and members of Dignity Village have been camping on public land
in protest of Portlands camping ban for the past two nights. For more details from Indymedia,
Later this morning supporters and villagers gathered at Dignity's new site, Sunderland Yard, to build
a deck for tents and erect several structures donated by City Repair, including a tower and a dome.
The deck was constructed to keep tents off the pavement which is subject to flooding, and Dignity Village's
flag was placed on top of the dome. The work party was followed by a pot-luck this afternoon.
Friday, September 7th, 2001
As of today thirty-eight of the seventy villagers that were living at Dignity Village's former
location have moved to Sunderland Yard. Another fifteen villagers are staying on the land of a supporter,
in Forest Grove. We expect that those fifteen will transition to the Sunderland Site within coming weeks.
Of the seventeen villagers who are unaccounted for, we believe several are at Dignity Village's farm,
some are staying with other supporters, and others have moved to other encampments elsewhere in the city.
We still have a lot of work to do at the Sunderland site. There will be a work party at the new site, this
Sunday starting at 10:00 a.m., Sept. 9th, to make the Sunderland site livable for the next 60 days. We
would like to thank City Repair for spearheading the work party. All supporters are invited to show up for
the work party, and we will be having a pot luck later that day at 1 PM. People are welcome to come to
either or both events!
A street map showing the new locations can be viewed here, and a Tri-Met
bus map can be viewed here.
Wednesday, September 5th, 2001
Despite grave concerns about the new site, a group of Dignity Village's residents packed up their
belongings and moved to Sunderland Yard today. Sunderland Yard is a leaf-composting site near
the airport in outer Northeast Portland. The City announced last Wednesday, August 29th, that
Dignity would have to move to Sunderland Yard for the next sixty days or face a police sweep.
Portland City Police issued a 24-hour notice to vacate Dignity's current site at 11:00 a.m. yesterday.
Other villagers have decided to move to alternate encampments around the city instead of relocating
to Sunderland, which they feel is too far from jobs and social services in the urban core.
For more on todays events click here.
Sunderland Yard is located at the end of the Tri-Met 10 line next to the Columbia River
Correctional Facility, to access a Tri-Met bus map and schedule for the 10 line,
Click here for a street map to Sunderland Yard.
Tuesday, September 4th, 2001
Police arrived at Dignity Village's current location at 17th and Savier to post a 24 hour notice
demanding villagers vacate that location. Police informed villagers that they would be returning
at 11:00 am tomorrow, Wednesday Septemebr 5th, to sweep the village. We urge as many
supporters as possible to come to the site as witnesses and to dissuade a police sweep. We also
urge supporters to call Mayor vera Katz's office: (503)823-4120.
It is also important that supporters call Governor Kitzhaber's office: (503) 378-4582. The site
currently occupied by Dignity belongs to ODOT, the Oregon Department of Transportation.
It is ODOT who has asked the police to evict the villagers, and it is the Governor's office that
has authority over ODOT.
Dignity announced at a press conference yesterday that it will not move to the City-proposed
site in outer Northeast Portland as earlier planned. The Village sited inadequate resources and
conditions in and around the proposed site as the reason it will not move to the new location.
Adding that the inability of many of the villagers to move to the new site would result in a de facto
break up of the village. Dignity's statement to the press can be found
For up to date information form Portland Indymedia
Oregonlive is taking an online poll on Dignity's decision to not move to the City-proposed site.
The poll is worded strangely, so if you support Dignity's decision not to move to the new site,
select "No, the City of Portland is being unfair and should leave Dignity Village where it is."
To take the poll
Monday, Spetemeber 3rd, 2001
Dignity Village announced at a press conference today that it has reversed its decision to move to
the Sunderland Yard site, which the City has offered as a temporary location for Dignity for the 60 days.
The village reversed its decision in reaction to new information regarding water drainage and possible
environmental hazards at the proposed site. Villagers were also upset by Bureau of Maintenance's
decision to surround the site with a barbed wire fence. Click
here for more details.
Sunday, September 2nd, 2001
Dignity Village is preparing to move this Tuesday to its new location at Sunderland Yard. This site has
been described by the City Council as temporary and unacceptable for long term occupation. Some
villagers have described it in more severe terms. We have more on the site, including photos and a
short real video clip, in our news section.
We have also added photos from Dignity's historic Martin Luther King Day shopping cart parade to
our photos section.
Friday, August 31th, 2001
The City Council voted 4-1 yesterday in support of a resolution granting official support Dignity Village.
At the same meeting Dignity Village made clear its intention to accept the temporary site that the City
has chosen for Dignity. The site has been offered to Dignity only for the next sixty days, and its location
forty minutes outside of Portland urban core as well as its other features have come as a
disappointment villagers. Click here
for more details from the Oregonian.
For more information about Dignity's move to its new location look in
our news section.
Wednesday, August 29th, 2001
On day before the City Council meets to decide whether it will continue to work with Dignity and
two days before Dignity will be required to vacate its current site, the City has offered a temporary
location for the village. The proposed site is located in NE Portland, 40 minutes by bus from
for more details form the Oregonian. Please, also look in
our articles section for other recent stories.
Monday, August 27, 2001
As the September 1st deadline and an August 30th City Council decision on Dignity approach. The media is
once again focusing on Dignity. We have added a couple of new pieces from the Oregonian to
our articles section, and you can read our latest press release
Monday, August 20, 2001
News Update: Digsville Farm is having a celebration
on August 26th and everyone is invited.
Articles Update: The Vancouver Columbian takes a look at Digsville Farm.
Wednesday, August 1, 2001
News Update: Dignity announces Digsville's first harvest
, along with updates on ongoing land negotiation.
Articles Update: Street Roots newspaper dedicated its latest issue to Dignity Village. Take a look at some the
Poems and Writings Update: New works by Dignity Villagers
Tuesday, July 24, 2001
Photo Section Update: Take a look at some of our new
Monday, July 9, 2001
Dignity Village Update: Over the past two weeks, a number of major developments have occurred that
new set of opportunities and challenges to Dignity Village.
for a full update.
Also, we have more articles.
Thursday, June 28, 2001
Article Update: Dignity Village can stay for now.
City officials have announced that they will not sweep the village on July 1st and will continue "good faith"
Tuesday, June 26, 2001
Oregon-Live talks with Chief Kroeker, Mayor Katz, and Dignity Village
supporter John Hubbird about Dignity Village.
Community potluck this weekend at Dignity Village.
Thursday, June 21, 2001
More Articles, Dignity Villagers building sense of community - from The
It Takes a [Dignity] Village by MR Lee in the Portland Tattler, and Dignity Village's
proposal for a permanent site.
Tuesday, June 12, 2001
Updated Articles Don't sweep these people back under
bridges - from The Oregonian.
Saturday, June 9, 2001 - 11:43
Tuesday, Jun 5, 2001
Two new articles
on the proposed July 1st deadline for Dignity to leave public land.
Thursday, April 19, 2001
Added many more photos.
Monday, March 21, 2001
New photos added! See our photo
page for the pictures...
Monday, February 5, 2001
Started a poetry
and writing page. Read the words by the residents of Dignity Village!
Thursday, February 1, 2001
We have updated our articles
section, and will no doubt be adding more!
page has been added to the About Dignity section. More to come.
We've got a page listing What
We Need as well. Please check it out.
Wednesday, January 24, 2001
New web site up! Welcome!