Why The Hell Were Riot Police Called In To Destroy These Houses For The Homeless? (VIDEO)

Saturday evening the Denver Police “broke up” a “settlement” of homeless residents who live as part of a program through Denver Homeless Out Loud (DHOL) in the Denver Housing Authority-owned community garden. DHOL built tiny houses for each person to protect them against the elements. In Denver, it can get pretty cold during the winter, so a blanket isn’t exactly going to do much to help people. Affordable housing is one of the hardest things that the working poor must find in order to live. In some cities, it just isn’t available.

“We have been envisioning a tiny house village in Denver for years,” Karen Seed told the DenverPost.

Ten people were arrested on Saturday at Sustainability Park after the organizers set up the tiny houses but refused to “disperse” at the orders of the police. For the last five years, the land was part of an Urban Farmers Collaborative a project under the nonprofit organization called Greenleaf which aims to teach youth to grow and harvest produce. All of the crops are then sold in local neighborhoods in the city that are considered “food deserts,” or areas that don’t have nearby access to a full grocery store that has fresh unprocessed foods like fruits and vegetables.

Apparently, now the Denver Housing Authority plans to sell the land which has sat unused by the DHA for 15 years. Activists are understandably disappointed.  They had named the small village of tiny homes, “Resurrection Village (after the similarly named tent city which Martin Luther King Jr’s Poor People’s Human Rights Campaign built in Washington DC to demand higher wages and access to decent housing),” DHOL said in a press release. The group says they wanted to end the “criminalization of homelessness” in the city and continue their work doing urban farming.

“In the afternoon, while constructing tiny homes on-site, the group was visited by a representative of Denver Housing Authority, as well as by the developer,” said the DHOL. “By 9pm, with a police helicopter circling overhead, the officers made the arrests and Denver Public Works destroyed, threw into dump trucks, and carted away the homes that had been so badly needed by houseless people and so lovingly constructed by those who would have lived there and their supporters.”

Many low-income housing units are being torn down in Denver, which is one of the 20 fastest growing cities in the United States according to Forbes. Affordable housing isn’t easy. In fact, it is one of the greatest struggles the working poor faces.

Thankfully, activists aren’t deterred. They plan to continue fighting the affordable housing crisis in Denver and help the working poor achieve safer and more stable housing solutions. Here’s hoping Denver can find it’s compassion to help those without homes instead of continuing to price people out of the city as it grows.

Featured Image via screenshot