FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA) — People living at the the camp behind 7Hills Homeless Center on University Of Arkansas property have been cleared out.
“We understand that this is tough for everyone involved, but we feel like this is an effort that has to be done for the safety of all involved,” Asst. Vice Chancellor for University Relations Mark Rushing said.
The deadline set by the the University of Arkansas for people staying at the camp behind 7Hills Homeless Center is up.
UAPD posted no trespassing signs on the property Thursday afternoon.
“A month ago we were out here and there were 80 to 100 individuals. Yesterday I received an estimate that there were more like 20,” Rushing said.
According to UAPD, three arrests have been made Thursday since the early morning raid.
“One of the individuals has previously received a criminal trespass citation, the other two were arrested on criminal violations,” Rushing said.
Several organizations hosted a town hall meeting in August to inform campers about resources that would be available. But according to one former camper, Jersey, not enough has been done.
“I need the community to give us a hand here. We need a place where we can set up camp. The system is doing everything they can right now, it’s just not quick enough. We need something now today and tonight,” Jersey said.
7Hills CEO Jessica Andrews says many people have been placed in housing by Thursday’s deadline, but there’s still nearly 20 people who don’t have a place to go. That’s why 7Hills has opened it’s property for additional resources.
“We did extend some safe parking for those with vehicles for people to park if they are staying in their vehicles at 7Hills. We have 8 spots open for that and all the housing providers with openings in their programs,” Andrews said.
But this former camper says the housing issue will be ongoing.
“It’s not just a homeless problem, it’s a community problem at this point,” Jersey said.