PORTLAND, Ore. -- After a month to pack up and get ready, Sept. 1 was finally moving day on the Springwater Corridor for hundreds of homeless campers.
At a number of sites along the popular paved path, homeless people could be seen pushing shopping carts full of belongings toward a cadre of volunteers, many of whom stood by with pickup trucks to take people to their next place.
One homeless advocate said the day was a stressful one for those who’ve been forced to leave homes of months, even years.
“Folks on the street already have a stressful life,” said Pastor Steve Kimes of Red Barn. “So this is coming together all at once, and all of your friends are all going through the same thing.”
Moving day was peaceful at the camp at Southeast 84th Avenue and Lambert Street, but many homeless people said they were stressed, because they were not sure where they are going to go next.
“I feel hurt. We shouldn’t have to move,” said Tyrone Johns. He said he’s been trying to find a job, but his criminal record has been a major impediment to finding work.
Nearby residents said they were happy to see the sweep finally come.
LaDawna Booze lives across the street from the corridor, and said she has felt like a hostage in her own home.
“I have nowhere to go,” she said. “My front porch they see me, my back porch they see me.”
There are still some homeless people in their campsites, but if they assure city workers that they’ll be out Sept. 2, they will be allowed to spend the night.