CSU Chico Panel on Homelessness

On May 9, 2019, California State University hosted a panel discussion on homelessness sponsored by the Chico State California Faculty Association and Slow Theater. Participants on the panel included Angela McLaughlin, Board President of Safe Space; Rob Berry, Chico First; Robert C. Jones, Department of Philosophy, Trevor Guthrie, Associated Students; and Patrick Newman, founder of Chico Friends on the Street.

Listen to a recording of the event!:
Susanna Boxall (Introductions)
Angela McLaughlin
Rob Berry
Robert Jones (excerpt)
Trevor Guthrie
Patrick Newman
Q&A (Rob Davidson, moderator)

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Former Jesus Center Executive Director Bill Such and CFOTS Founder Patrick Newman to appear on KZFR radio tomorrow

The aftermath of the Camp Fire is forcing Chicoans to confront the issue of the “worthy” versus “unworthy” poor. Join former Jesus Center Executive Director Bill Such and CFOTS Founder Patrick Newman in discussion with Robert Jones on the Peace and Social Justice show, KZFR 90.1FM, tomorrow (Friday), December 14, from noon to 1pm.

If you’re not near a radio, you can tune in online or on your smart phone here:
https://tunein.com/radio/KZFR-901FM-s26762/

or here:
http://www.kzfr.org/

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CFOTS Founder Patrick Newman Named Chico News and Review “Local Hero” of 2018

Chico Friends on the Street founder Patrick Newman was named a Chico News and Review “Local Hero” of 2018. The paper notes that “Newman and his allies…do a lot for the city’s down and out,” highlighting the fact that “over the course of the past nearly three years, they’ve collectively handed out somewhere in the range of 7,000 bagged lunches, hundreds of blankets and sleeping bags, and hundreds of boxes of clothing and toiletries.” By his own admission, Newman does not claim to be offering permanent solutions to Chico’s homeless problem. Rather, “[h]is efforts are to offer a counter-narrative to the criminalization route the city has adopted. The main goal—even with the food distribution—is to make it clear that homeless folks have a right to exist.” Read the full story here. Bravo Patrick!

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Chico Friends on the Street Discuss Love, Charity, and Social Justice on KZFR Radio

CFOTS members Angela McLaughlin and Patrick Newman joined host Robert Jones, July 13, 2018, on KZFR’s Peace and Social Justice program to discuss McLaughlin’s recent essay in the Enterprise Record, the work of Father Greg Boyle, and the tension between love, charity, and social justice activism.

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Why there are so many unsheltered homeless people on the West Coast

New research from UCSF explores the causes of homelessness in California. According to the author of the study, Prof. Margot Kushel, “[s]ome assume that homelessness is so common on the West Coast because people move here when they become homeless, but data do not support this. Most people experience homelessness close to where they lost their housing….Instead, the high rate of homelessness can be attributed to the lack of affordable housing…”

Read the entire piece here (5-minute read): Why there are so many unsheltered homeless people on the West Coast

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Speak up on June 5th; CFOTS on KZFR

Friends,

We urge you to show up on Tuesday, June 5th at the Chico City Council and make your voice heard. The meeting begins at 6pm, and is located on 421 Main Street (enter on 4th Street).  


 

Chico Friends on the Street is back on the radio, on KZFR’s Without a Roof:

Without a Roof, May 16th

Patrick Newman and Prof. Robert C. Jones discuss the systemic aspects of poverty and homelessness with host Guillermo Mash. (Starts at 9:25 mark).

Without a Roof, May 30th

North State Voices columnist and CFOTS member Angela McLaughlin discusses the renewal of Sit-Lie, and the importance of showing up on June 5th (2:51 mark).

Patrick Newman and Prof. Robert C. Jones dismantle Chico First’s 10-point plan against the homeless (7:48 mark).

Thanks to Guillermo Mash. 

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Solidarity with homeless in Chico a necessary step

The following letter appeared in the Chico Enterprise-Record on April 15, 2018:

Letter writer Rob Berry quotes my comments from the floor of the City Council in an effort to further his campaign against the homeless — and against those who stand in solidarity with them. However, Berry fails to cite the central message of my remarks, intended to highlight the ugly and hateful statements of Berry’s group.

At the March 20 council meeting, members of Chico First systematically and maliciously disparaged, demonized and dehumanized Chico’s homeless, referring to them as “vagrants,” a “criminal element,” a “problematic lot” and a “poison” to the community. The group even compared homeless people to wild animals and aliens from “Star Wars.” That exhibition was disgraceful.

The honorable solution to homelessness is housing and social services. Short of that, the next best thing concerned citizens can do is affirm the homeless by standing in solidarity in the public space (the only space they have) and to protest laws criminalizing poverty. Hiding the homeless in “navigation centers” or jails is a form of erasure and disempowerment — acts that carry the scent of authoritarianism, which should be of grave concern to those who cherish the Bill of Rights.

Lastly, I would like to note how overjoyed I was to read Berry’s description of my actions as nothing more than a “Power to the People” campaign. “All Power to the People” was the slogan of the Black Panther party. A greater compliment I cannot imagine. I can only hope my actions would have made Huey Newton and Bobby Seale proud.

— Robert C. Jones

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