The goal is to marginalize no one: email to Whatcom and Bellingham leaders / Noisy Waters Northwest

Click the graphic to access material available on the City of Bellingham website presenting the City’s view of events surrounding the 1/28/21 sweep of Camp 210

February 19, 2021 Dena Jensen

Here is an email I sent this morning:

Subject: The goal is to marginalize no one

Dear Mayor Fleetwood, Bellingham City Council, Bellingham Parks and Recreation Department, and Homeless Strategies Workgroup Members:

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Thoughts on the Camp 210 Sweep / Commentary by Kai Rapaport

Police presence at Camp 210 Sweep. Photo Credit: Kai Rapaport

February 5, 2021 Kai Rapaport

[Author’s Note: I am not a representative of Camp 210, but a concerned community member and volunteer; mistakes are my own]

Dear Bellingham,

This message is a plea to our Mayor Fleetwood to stop the sweep of our houseless neighbors at Camp 210, in their new location by Puget and Fraser near Civic field Friday at 4pm. This article is also an invitation to the community to support our houseless neighbors in voicing their concerns about this sweep. 

I understand this message is long so I can summarize it now:

Please contact your Mayor, principally; your health department; the parks department; your City Councilmembers; and encourage your organizations to denounce this sweep. Sweeps do not solve houselessness, they only move our houseless neighbors.

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RE winter emergency sheltering efforts in Whatcom County prior to the 2020 cold weather season

Click the graphic to access a recording of YouTube video of the March 30, 2020 Whatcom County Homeless Strategies Workgroup meeting. This was the first virtual meeting of the workgroup after the outbreak of COVID-19 in the United States

The City of Bellingham and Whatcom County Government have been increasingly focused since the cold weather season has hit, on putting out information about their housing and sheltering efforts. There is no doubt that they have been making efforts to create low income housing and to sustain and enhance some sheltering solutions. But a significant challenge being faced right now by our community is a failure of our government agencies to respond effectively to hostile weather emergency sheltering needs, especially during a pandemic. 

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A call to provide winter shelters in Bellingham and Whatcom County / Letter to Bellingham City Council and Whatcom County Council

October 30, 2020 Dena Jensen

Sent: Thursday, October 29, 2020, 07:39:21 PM PDT

Subject: A call to provide winter shelters

Dear Bellingham City Council and Whatcom County Council:

I am calling on you to take immediate action to address the absence of ample winter shelters to keep individuals being left with no other option than to sleep outside overnight during conditions that can cause hypothermia, and in the middle of a pandemic. According to an October 16, 2020 King5 report, “Washington State remains on track for a cooler, wetter winter.” https://www.king5.com/article/weather/weather-blog/winter-outlook-wetter-colder-washington-state/281-8a300d02-79fb-48b3-837f-2303c49133af 

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Fall, wind, and rain are here; legal homeless camping or emergency shelters aren’t

Click the graphic of the agenda for the 9/25/2020 Homeless Strategies Workgroup (HSW) meeting to access the HSW meeting materials page on the Whatcom County website

September 24, 2020 Dena Jensen

Fall, wind, and rain are here. Late-November, (which is the last time severe weather shelters were offered) is two months away. At Friday’s 1:30 p.m. Homeless Strategies Workgroup meeting, 5 minutes are scheduled for discussing Winter Shelter (temporary and emergency) and 5 minutes are scheduled for discussing Encampment clean-up/sweeps. How are these critical topics not a priority topic when people who are unsheltered are in positions -right now – to have their tarps and tents either blow away or be flooded, and freezing temps are weeks away? 

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‘She comes and goes addressing the camps’: Who decides homeless camp ‘clean ups’ for the City of Bellingham? / Noisy Waters Northwest

Click the screenshot of a HomesNow. Not Later. Facebook post with text and picturing a Zoom meeting still frame of the 9/11/20 Homeless Strategies Workgroup meeting in order to access a recording of that meeting


September 12, 2020 Dena Jensen

On Friday, September 11, 2020 Whatcom County’s Homeless Strategies Workgroup (HSW) held their most recent meeting. Many critical issues were discussed and people should watch and listen to the whole meeting. Homelessness is an emergency for many members of our community.

In this blog post, however, I am providing a transcription of a discussion during the meeting, which began shortly before public comment was taken and continued throughout some of the public comments later on. The discussion focused on Bellingham Police Department (BPD) policy/procedure related to City of Bellingham unauthorized homeless “camp clean ups”, as they are referred to by COB.

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More BPD public relations: Chief Doll’s statement at the 8/24/20 Bellingham City Council meeting / Noisy Waters Northwest

Click the graphic of a screen shot of the YouTube video showing Chief David Doll at the Bellingham City Council meeting on August 24, 2020 to access the recording

August 25, 2020 Dena Jensen

I am posting below Bellingham Police Department Chief Doll’s statement at the 8/24/20 Bellingham City Council meeting last night, which was regarding the September 2019 prank involving BPD officers taking advantage of a severely mentally ill community member to play a dangerous prank on fellow officers at a local restaurant. The incident was reported in the Bellingham Herald on August 15. I will put the link to the part of the meeting where the statement begins at about 00:52:30, https://youtu.be/7-r7GZCe5r0?t=3146

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Some Bellingham City Council Members are ready to commit to action regarding policing / Noisy Waters Northwest

Click the graphic of a cropped image of a smiling woman in a dark shirt, in her radio studio with a light green wall, with lettering across the photo, to access the KGMI Saturday Morning Live August 15, 2020 radio show

August 16, 2020 Dena Jensen

Q: So guess who’s not at all afraid to commit to actions regarding the Bellingham Police Department? (And don’t get excited on this first one, because, in this case, it’s not good news).

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Speaking power to truth: current law enforcement public relations in Bellingham and Whatcom County / Noisy Waters Northwest

Click the graphic of a black police car with white and blue lettering and white and blue striping to access a June 24, 2020 KGMI radio news extra on Bellingham Police Department’s “Police Perspective” video series

July 30, 2020  Dena Jensen

Since the body count of victims of unjust killings by police officers culminated with the slaying of George Floyd by Minneapolis police officers in late May this year, community members in various areas of Whatcom County have been calling more intensely for numerous types of law enforcement and justice changes aimed at eliminating racist, discriminatory, biased, violent, militaristic, unjust, or unnecessary law enforcement actions. Increasingly, voices of local law enforcement officials are resounding in response.

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Attending sweeps of unsheltered residents during pandemic sounds alarms for better solutions / Letter to Whatcom County Council & Bellingham City Council

Screen Shot 2020-07-09 at 6.43.27 PM

Click the graphic of a portion of a recent listing of Bellingham Police Daily Activity displaying four different items regarding Illegal Camp clean ups and notifications to access this information on the COB website

July 9, 2020  Dena Jensen

Sent: Wednesday, July 8, 2020, 07:47:20 PM PDT

Subject: A call for providing funding and land for tiny home communities

Dear Whatcom County Council and Bellingham City Council:

I am writing to call on you to support the request of community members and members of HomesNOW! to act quickly to reappropriate funds from things like unauthorized tent site clean-ups toward the creation of tent, tiny home, or cottage communities.

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