What's Wrong with Initiative 300?
Allows people to occupy all outdoor public places, including parks and sidewalks, indefinitely.
Prohibits Denver from enforcing essential laws that protect
Eliminates all park curfews.
Why vote NO on 300
Keep our parks great places to play and spend time with friends and family.
Protect neighborshoods from people camping on sidewalks and alleys near homes.
Allow Denver to enforce laws that keep us safe.
Preserve park curfews.
What Denverites Are Saying About Why They're Voting NO on 300
"When I take my kids to the park, I want a place where we can have fun, not a place where we see people living in harmful conditions."
-Sarah Smith, engineer and mother
"Denver has made helping people experiencing homelessness a top priority. We've increased shelter space and created housing for people. Living outdoors is dangerous for both those living there, and those nearby. Initiative 300 is bad for the homeless and our city as a whole. 300 would only make homelessness worse."
-Marcus Hernandez, Assistant Director of Denver Homeless Shelter
What has happened to cities with rules like 300?
How Homelessness Increased 75% in Six Years in Los Angeles
Before: The City of Los Angeles could ask people to move from public spaces like sidewalks and parks in order to protect public safety.
After: Starting in 2007, the City of Los Angeles agreed to not move homeless people off sidewalks and public spaces like parks.
The L.A. Times reports the homeless population in the city increased from 33,000 to 55,000 in six years.
As many as 8,000 homeless people live in one area called Skid Row (pictured on the left). Drug use, violence, prostitution and fires are common there. Human feces and urine as well as discarded food and trash has attracted rats, fleas and diseases. In 2018 these conditions led to a typhus outbreak, and a public health crisis.
"Illegally dumping, food being discarded, accumulation of blankets and pillows, and human waste [is creating] Third World conditions."
- Estela Lopez, Executive Director of the Central City East Association, L.A. Downtown Industrial District
See More Case Studies
Doing Better By Our Homeless Neighbors: Initiative 300 is NOT the Answer
Allowing people to sleep outside in public places is not safe, healthy or helpful for the people experiencing homelessness or our community. Denver should be a community where all people can thrive, not just survive. However, Denver’s rising housing costs are creating a real crisis. The City and community partners are taking meaningful steps to create more affordable housing and provide effective outreach and support services to people experiencing homelessness. More should be done to ensure Denver is a safe, supportive place for everyone, but initiative 300 is not the answer.
What is Denver doing to support the homeless?
Denver is currently providing 250 units of housing and intensive case management services for chronically homeless individuals, with plans and funding to expand to an additional 100 units this year.
Denver Street Outreach Collaborative
The City funds 18 street outreach workers, along with 2 behavioral health navigators and 2 overnight search and rescue caseworkers, to connect those experiencing homelessness and direct them to resources. An average of 713 unique individuals per month are referred to services.
Dedicated Fund for Affordable Housing
The fund is estimated to raise at least $150 million over the next 10 years to create or preserve 6,000 affordable homes with 40 to 50 percent of housing resource investments targeted to those experiencing homelessness and those earning below 30 percent of Area Median Income (AMI).
In addition to City investments, there are many non-profit organizations that spend private and philanthropic money to support the homeless population in our community. Also, Denver voters passed the Caring for Denver initiative in 2018. This will supply $45 million dollars per year for mental health and addiction services. A large portion of the funds will go to people experiencing homelessness.
We know that there is work to be done. However, Initiative 300 would actually make homelessness worse in Denver, as we've seen similar rules do in Los Angeles and other cities. We urge our community to come together to create solutions to homelessness.