The city has removed more homeless encampments this year than in all of 2017, with a sharp increase in the cleanup of camps without prior notice to residents.
In past fights over the removal of homeless encampments, Seattle officials have stressed the outreach that occurs in the camps before they’re emptied and cleared. Residents are given 72 hours’ notice, the city says, and all camp residents are offered spots in shelters or tiny-house villages.
But, increasingly, that’s not the case.
The city has already removed more homeless encampments this year than it did in all of 2017: 220 sites have been cleared between the start of 2018 and the end of July, compared to 191 camps last year.
Of those cleanups, the biggest increase has been in the number of encampments that have been cleared immediately and without notice. The city removed 89 encampments since the beginning of 2018 without having to provide 72-hour notice or offers of shelter to the camp residents, a dramatic uptick compared to the previous year, according to information the city released Tuesday. That’s about 40 percent of the removals this year.