How Grand Junction Camping Ban Impacts Unhoused Residents

The city is still developing an interim housing plan, but has not yet provided alternate safe housing options for people experiencing homelessness.

1 minute read

May 30, 2024, 9:08 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

View of downtown Grand Junction, Colorado with mesas in background.

jzehnder / Adobe Stock

In a video from KREX5, reporter Jessica Livingstone interviews unhoused residents of Grand Junction, Colorado, where the city just banned the use of tents in public parks during daytime, effectively banning encampments. Residents interviewed by Livingstone say the new rules will push them to more dangerous locations without basic amenities like public bathrooms.

The city has also closed several parks to prevent unhoused people from sleeping there.

According to an article by Tom Hesse in Colorado Public Radio News, the new resolution passed after a similar proposal failed in the city council in February. “City Council Member Scott Beilfuss was the lone member to vote against the measure. He said a blanket change based on concerns over one park would have negative impacts on the unhoused community as a whole.”

Hesse explains that plans to provide other safe camping and parking options as part of an interim housing plan have not yet been approved. “While that plan has not yet been approved, the city’s interim housing workgroup has been developing a framework that was pitched to City Council during a work session Monday.”

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