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Anaheim declares homeless state of emergency

The Anaheim City Council has unanimously voted to declare a state of emergency on the out of control homeless problem along the Santa Ana River Trail.

There are tent cities, urine, feces, syringes, and dangerous people fouling up an area that they have no right to be living in.

Anaheim's 7-member council listened to more than 3 hours worth of public comment and spent about 90 minutes talking about the issue. More than 100 people turned out to the meeting including residents, homeless advocates, business owners, and city and county leaders.

Councilwoman Kris Murray, who introduced the resolution called Operation Safe Home, said:

“It’s important that we realize this situation has gotten to a level that it is creating a crisis in our communities and that we cannot solely rely on the county to solve this problem. We have got to be willing to take it to the next level.”

Councilwoman Lucille Kring, who joined our show yesterday, said:

“As they say the riverbed is a prison without walls and it’s true. The people are living in squalor; they don’t want help so people who are addicted [to drugs], we need to gather them up and put them somewhere where they can get the help that they need.”

Under Murray's "state of emergency," Anaheim would ramp up its efforts with the county, law enforcement, and nonprofits to clean up the homeless areas and provide more mental and behavioral services.

She wants a 500-bed temporary emergency shelter, and says that once the homeless are moved out Anaheim can begin to enforce its anti-camping ordinance.

Councilwoman Kris Murray joined us this afternoon:

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