Dallas Clears Homeless Encampment Near 75/Royal…Again

The city cleared out a homeless encampment at Central Expressway and Royal, something crews have done half a dozen times in the last year

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On Thursday, Dallas city crews came to clear out a homeless encampment near North Central Expressway and Royal Lane in Dallas, a pattern that's been repeated there about a half a dozen times in the last year, and at other homeless encampments across the city.

"The police are dogging us down," Dennis English said. "They're like, move! Move? Where? Them people over there don't want me. Move? I'm fine right here!"

English said he was told to leave the encampment Thursday morning. He's been homeless for 20-years.

"Please help me," English said. "How do I do all this with no money, no bus ride. Help me."

"So now we're in this kind of conundrum," Dallas City Councilman Lee Kleinman said. "You have people that have real needs, but we have residents that have real needs too; which is to have a safe, clean community...they don't want to see the trash and they don't want to see the homeless, and it's not because they're not compassionate."

Kleinman said for North Texas, Dallas has a bigger homeless issue because, in part, the city has more services for the homeless, but the city is not unique.

"Across the country and across the world they're all struggling with this homeless problem," Kleinman said. "If we could find a solution in any city in this country, we would adopt that solution."

According to the 2019 Point in Time Homeless Count, Dallas had 3,722 people who experienced homelessness. With 2,000 shelter beds full nearly every night, more than 1,000 people were living unsheltered on the streets.

"We have put in place a comprehensive plan," Kleinman said. "Getting it implemented has been a challenge."

Kleinman said the city does a good job opening emergency shelters on extreme weather nights, but there is a gap in permanent supportive housing to get people off the streets long-term.

"I don't want to be here," English said. "We've got to work together to function."

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