Banner Hanging Press Release

One of the banners posted along the fence

25 July 2012

For Immediate Release

Banner Art Exhibition to promote community knowledge of Camp Take Notice:

One month post-eviction, less than 12 housed

Thursday, July 26th, from 3:00 – 4:00 PM, Camp Take Notice (CTN) supporters will hang banners on the fence now surrounding the most recent home of the tent city known as Camp Take Notice, on Wagner Road between Jackson and Dexter- Ann Arbor. The “gallery” of banners will draw attention to the fact that one month after the eviction of Camp Take Notice less than a dozen campers have moved-in to the housing that was promised by the Michigan State Housing Development Authority before the June 22nd eviction.  Campers who have not yet secured housing, in spite of own their best efforts and the support of local agencies, simply have nowhere to go.  The Delonis shelter is over capacity and there is not nearly enough affordable housing in our community.

Prior to eviction, Camp Take Notice offered a resourceful, respectful community for people facing homelessness due to many causes.  Campers and friends of the CTN from the local faith communities fostered a beautiful support network at no expense to taxpayers.  Since the eviction, the physical community has been dismantled and shut-out with an extensive eight-foot fence, which cost taxpayers a minimum of $20,000.  (As told to CTN by MDOT.)

The Banner Art Exhibition will highlight the positives images of the the CTN community, such as healing, hope, and mutual support, in contrast with the negative ones of eviction: destruction of nature, poor use of tax money, an unattractive fence.

CTN supporter, Sheri Wander, who got involved when facilitating nonviolence training for CTN, stated that she believes it is critical the larger community knows that most campers have not found housing: “Even if we assume good intent of the people who promised housing, less than 12 of 65 housed one month post-eviction clearly means the plan has failed.  Our neighbors are facing a crisis.  Removing individuals from this site did not make them disappear.  The growing issue of homelessness in Washtenaw County requires creative solutions like the one that Camp Take Notice offers.”

###

BACKGROUND INFO: http://tentcitymichigan.org/

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3 responses to “Banner Hanging Press Release

  1. Hey Jeff, Thanks for asking. Yes, we hung a bunch of the banner art on Thursday afternoon. Somewhere between 11 PM and 6AM someone tore it down. I suspect I might be able to guess who as someone drove by earlier and yelled “you know I’m just going to tear it down, right.” But… it was up during rush hour – which was the key point. And we got lots of positive honks and claps and support while we were hanging the banners. At 6 AM a few CTN supporters went out and cleaned up the mess left by the person(s) who tore the banners down. (They had left torn banners 1/2 attached to the fence, banner sheets shredded along the side of the road…) we salvaged what we could and hung them back up along w/ others the next day. I think of the banners as a way to start a community conversation about the fact that only a dozen of the campers are in the promised housing. Our neighbors have no where to go, and we — as a community — need to be addressing this issue. How sad that someone would try to stop that. Then again, since we got such great attention during the process of hanging them, and more media coverage with 2 installations of the banner art perhaps I should find the person who tore them down and say “thanks” for the help in drawing attention.

  2. Your website (http://tentcitymichigan.org/) is poorly organized and outdated. If you want people to “take notice,” try keeping the information current and modify your site to facilitate navigation.

    • Yes Peter, yes it is. In the past, CTN organizing has taken place mainly “on the ground” and we are just now using the internet and social media to get the word out. Thank you for the constructive criticism!
      -Laila

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