This is the old Web-site for the "Dillville" Tent City of Lakewood, NJ. Our camp was bulldozed by the Lakewood Township government in June 2014! This Web-site is preserved for historical reasons.


Ordinance 2013-24

NOTE: this news article is a work in progress...


The Ordinance

The ordinance passed in Spring of 2013 by the closely allied handful of Lakewood Township's public officials prohibits "camping" / sleeping outdoors anywhere on publicly-owned property in Lakewood, NJ (USA) - even on private land, unless the person camping/sleeping there has producible WRITTEN permission of the property owner.  The ordinance prohibits not only the usage of a "lean-to" / structure, but also of a tent, a sleeping bag, or even a blanket. Hence, to avoid arrest, a person needing to sleep outdoors would need to have somehow heard of this ordinance, found a private property owner who would be willing to sign written permission (which presumably could be shared with any neighbors or other parties who would like to interfere), and indefinitely protect that document from damage or  confiscation - even if they had physical or mental impediments to doing so.  The ordinance makes no provision for police officers to make even a quick attempt to verify verbal permission with the property owner. 

This ordinance is an example of laws / rules / policies which are known collectively as the "criminalization of homelessness": a survey of more than 200 American cities, towns & municipalities reports that more than half of them have attempted to ban one or more of the following: giving food to groups of people in public, sleeping or laying down in public, sitting on a curb/sidewalk, or asking for money in public.

More to follow.


Passage

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