County caught giving away 6,000 more free tents

By Taxpayers Association of Oregon Foundation

Portland city officials cleared 4,000 homeless encampments last year after a 2022 lawsuit contended tents blocked access on public sidewalks needed by people with disabilities, which equated to between 8,000 and 12,000 tents. But at the same time, the Joint Office of Homeless Services—a collaboration between the city and Multnomah County—handed  out more than 6,000 tents and 24,000 tarps. The county recently set aside money for more tents, tarps, clean syringes, and behavioral health services for people living on the streets in its recently passed nearly $4 billion budget, but one attorney likened it to walking up a down escalator and fails to bring people indoors and off the streets.