Three homeless activists are locked down at the Flamingo Motel, prepared to risk arrest. All other residents have been cleared off the property and are waiting in the alley behind the Flamingo for the arrival of the police.
The Santa Monica Police arrived at the Flamingo last night, and told the protesters occupying the property that MacGuire-Thomas, the leasing agents of the abandoned motel, had filed a complaint regarding the presence of the homeless protestors. The police said they they will return and arrest all still on the premises, and confiscate whatever personal property they find.
MacGuire-Thomas, also involved in the destruction of the Ballona wetlands to build a mega-studio complex, told one reporter who called that they did not own the building. It is presently unclear who does own the building, and whether the owners are aware of the events. This is being looked into.
Most importantly, the Flamingo is providing shelter to more than 50 people. The homeless activists, because of the failure of the government to provide assistance to needy citizens, have taken matters in to their own hands.
The City of Santa Monica has, instead of responding to the problem, directed its police force to hound and harass homeless residents. They have made being poor and homeless a criminal offense. The protestors say this is a violation of human rights, and is doubly reprehensible in the richest state of the richest nation on earth.
If you can, please go to the Flamingo and protest the police action. You can also assist the people at the Flamingo by :
Calling the City of Santa Monica and telling them to call off the police. Tell them to reverse their inhuman treatment of homeless citizens, and to work with the protestors to relocate the residents to another property -- such as one of the abandoned buidlings owned by the city. City of Santa Monica (310) 458-8704
Call Maguire -Thomas, and tell them you support the homeless protestors at the Flamingo -- and condemn their filing of a complaint with the Santa Monica Police. Tell them to withdraw the complaint and to work with the protestors to relocate the residents, who have nowhere to go, as a result of the real estate speculation engaged in by their company (and others like them) which has destroyed low-income housing in the city. Tell them to take some responsibility to make amends to those they have dispossessed for profit.
MacGuire Thomas (213) 253-4200
The Flamingo Motel, which closed two years ago, was one of the last places for transitional housing in the city.
If you have press contacts, or are press, please cover this story.
If you are a lawyer, there will probably be some people needing your services very soon. If you can help on a pro bono basis, please call (310) 289-7446 and leave a message, or you can try (213) 258-5504
The Flamingo is located at 1733 Ocean Avenue in Santa Monica Near the corner of Pico Blvd. Next to the Pacific Shore Hotel. (enter to the back alley accessible from the Rand parking lot) ________________________ http://www.radio4all.org http://www.radio4all.org/freepacifica
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