Contact Person: CB Rose

Company Name: Denver Tent City Initiative
Email Address:

RALLY: International Tent City and Alternative Housing Day -- May 16th!

Denver, CO, 5/9/05 -- On May 15th and 16th, tent cities and alternative housing advocates around the country, and elsewhere, will be sponsoring events in order to promote broader and more immediate solutions to the growing worldwide housing crisis. In conjunction with these events, the Denver Tent City Initiative will be holding one-hour rally on the steps of the City and County Building on Monday, May 16th, at 4:30 p.m. This rally is intended to indicate DTCI's dissatisfaction with, and to promote alternative solutions to, the Mayor's 10-Year Plan to End Homelessness, and other homeless policies. DTCI is a group of academics, field workers, citizens and homeless people that is striving to duplicate emergency/ interim housing measures that have already been implemented in other cities to alleviate the acute and dire conditions of homelessness.

Special presentations will include:

Michael Stoops, Executive Director, National Coalition for the Homeless: a letter of support sent to ITCAHD organizers around the country

Rep. Michael Merrifield (Manitou Springs): the tenant rights bill just vetoed by Governor Owens

Walt Kaesler, Architects for Humanity: Alternative housing -- a great option outside the zone

Dr. Ed Farrell: Homelessness and the health care crisis

Various homeless individuals and advocates

Food and music will also be provided.

DTCI finds it incredulous that the city of Denver can find the space, and millions of dollars, for a new jail in order to incarcerate the nonviolent poor, but will not invest a few hundred thousand dollars, and some small sites, on which to immediately house them. The same goes for the Mayor's 10-Year Plan. Rather than simply change excessively-restrictive and cost-inflating building and zoning policies, the city demonstrates a strong preference for creating a monsterous bureaucratic system that most poor people will have go/ be processed through in order to obtain housing. Such institutionalization inherently enacts numerous hoops that many homeless people will be unable, or unwilling, to jump through, and thus, will have limited success in reducing homelessness. At least one 10-Year Plan in the country has already had to be abandoned, and, as we feel the city's plan indicates a serious and ineffective misplacement of priorities, our rally will be the kick-off of a long-term campaign to bring attention to, and to change, the city's current policies.