Thursday, August 20, 2020

Ask Bonin and Moore to Enforce Ban on Tents and Camping at Venice Beach

In another misguided action, Councilman Bonin has directed the LAPD to stand down on enforcement of LAMC 63.44, which bars tents and camping in all city parks, including the Venice Beach Recreation Area and along the Boardwalk.

LAPD Chief Michel Moore elaborated last night:

In discussion with CM Bonin the Department has agreed to exercise its discretion and NOT enforce 63.44 on the PARK portion of Venice Beach boardwalk.  I have asked for a map of the Venice area color-coded with the enforcement criteria given the confusion stemming from various enforcement in consultation with the Councilmember.  The discretion is in direct response to the CDC guidance regarding COVID-19 and houseless individuals.

I’ve cc’d Captain Embrich who can provide further details and a copy of the map.

Mike(published here with the permission of Chief Moore)
As one senior LAPD official noted to me in a call last night, this new policy is actually in direct contradiction to CDC guidance, which states:
 Considerations for encampments
  • If individual housing options are not available, allow people who are living unsheltered or in encampments to remain where they are.  Clearing encampments can cause people to disperse throughout the community and break connections with service providers. This increases the potential for infectious disease spread. 

As is visible below, these campers have very recently traveled from other locations, doing exactly what the CDC advises against - dispersing through the community and breaking connections with service providers.  By stopping enforcement of the ban on camping and tents at Venice Beach, Mr. Bonin is inviting violation of CDC guidelines by encouraging campers to travel from 

 Photo: The Venice Current
wherever they are today to set up new camps on the beach, interacting with an unknown number of residents, Venice Beach visitors and other homeless people on their journey to our sandy shores - and also disconnecting with service providers. 
This is yet one more example of Mr. Bonin's tendency to create more problems, supposedly in an effort to solve them.
Please send the following message today to Mr. Bonin and Chief Moore:
Follow CDC guidance, stop the spread of Covid 19 and new homeless encampments at Venice Beach, and return our beach to its intended purpose - recreation and enjoyment by all residents and visitors.  Enforce LAMC 63.44 against tents and camping.
Send to:
Mike Bonin ->
Michel Moore - <>