March 18, 2015
Berkeley City Council adopted a number of rules for commercial and public areas that advocates say criminalize homeless people.
The rules restrict panhandling, interacting with planters and tree wells, hanging personal items, cooking, and sleeping.
The Council forwarded requests to collaborate with BART on public restrooms, review best practices in other cities for public urination/defecation, survey businesses, and assess the 6-foot wheelchair right-of-way.
Attorney Osha Neumann of the East Bay Community Law Center showed a film of a woman being handcuffed by police, screaming in apparent pain as a result of what a bystander pleading for an ambulance said was fibromyalgia.
Berkeley voters turned down Measure S in 2012, which would have criminalized sitting in commercial areas between 7 am and 10 pm.
Organizations mentioned/involved: East Bay Community Law Center (EBCLC)