Pioneer Park Coalition announces plan to combat crime, homelessness

Oct 6, 2022, 9:30 PM
Nichole Thomas, Pioneer Park Coalition member and Latter-day Brides owner, speaks during a Pioneer ...
Nichole Thomas, Pioneer Park Coalition member and Latter-day Brides owner, speaks during a Pioneer Park Coalition press conference about proposed homeless solutions at Pioneer Park in Salt Lake City on Thursday, Oct. 6, 2022. Photo credit: Kristin Murphy/Deseret News

SALT LAKE CITY — In a 27-page report, the Pioneer Park Coalition on Thursday announced a three-pronged plan to deal with homelessness and crime in Salt Lake City.

The plan includes housing alternatives to homeless camps and shelters.

In a news release, the coalition says several business leaders have provided examples of crime, drug use and personal threats. The business leaders also provided examples of garbage left over and tent encampments.

“We have lost faith in the strategies that promise something better,” said Nicole Thomas, a Pioneer Park Coalition member in a news release. “Millions and millions of dollars are being thrown at our homeless crisis. But more money won’t fix the problem, nor will it improve the lives of our most marginalized citizens.”

The second part of the plan by the Pioneer Park Coalition is to have police enforce the laws about illegal camping, drug use and other criminal acts.

Thirdly, the coalition wants there to be accountability for non-profit service providers. It says the public should be given a better picture of what these programs accomplish. Additionally, the coalition says non-profit service providers should be held accountable for any crime that takes place within their facilities. 

The coalition announced four steps to help accomplish its plan.

  • Create a sanctioned camp and do away with illegal camping.
  • Create a housing demonstration project that reflects the coalition’s plan.
  • Conduct a research study to see if the project is working.
  • Encourage business owner accountability. 

For access to the full report, click here.

Dale Spaulding contributed to this article.

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Pioneer Park Coalition announces plan to combat crime, homelessness