San Jose Starts Massive Sweep of Homeless Encampment Near Airport

Robert Handa, NBC Bay Area

02 de septiembre de 2022

After months of delays and debates, San Jose launched a massive month-long sweep of a sprawling homeless encampment near the airport Thursday.

It was a jarring site for the 200 or so unhoused people in the encampment around Guadalupe Gardens, as crews plowed through the targeted first zone, near Hedding Street, of the 40-acre site.

The September sweep is necessary for the city to meet an FAA mandated deadline to move the encampment away from the airport, or risk losing federal funding.

“We have 40 RVs that we moved out to the baseball field across the street, that has relieved some of the stress, but there are still people here,” said unhoused advocate Gail Osmer.

One is Carlos Rampolla, who has an old yellow school bus with seven dogs which hauls a mobile home.

He said it hasn’t been paradise, but he’s grateful.

“There’s a lot of noise because of the airplanes, so it’s kind of stressful,” said Rampolla. “But, well, at least I got to stay here.”

Advocates had hoped to delay the sweep because of the heat wave but city officials said they will pause abatement during peak heat days topping 88 degrees starting Saturday but will resume Wednesday.

By late afternoon, Rampolla was able to move to the far field away from the sweep.

The postal worker said the time at the encampment gave him a chance to save money.

“I was able to buy a lot here in California,” he said. “So I’m planning to build a house there.”

But advocates say Rampolla is the exception.

“Where are these 60 to 70 people living in an RV to go? There’s no plan,” said Osmer.

The city of San Jose, and Santa Clara County, as well as non profits were out there Thursday, trying to help people with their plans as they get pushed more and more into a corner.

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Handa, R. (2022). San Jose Starts Massive Sweep of Homeless Encampment Near Airport. NBC Bay Area. Recuperado el 02 de septiembre de 2022, de https://www.nbcbayarea.com/news/local/south-bay/san-jose-homeless-encampment-sweep/2992800/