St. Louis removes the riverside homeless camp

ST. LOUIS — Bulldozers and crews from the city of St. Louis began removing the remains of a tent Friday afternoon.

People sleeping in tents along the riverbank were given 10 days to vacate them. They were also offered an apartment. According to a city spokesman, 19 people accepted the offer.

Almost a year ago, FOX 2 reported on concerns from businesspeople in the area.

On Friday, Gretchen Minges observed how the emergency services cleared the area. She is the owner of Advantes Group, a developer heavily invested in Laclede’s Landing.

“We really hope the city continues to do its part in getting the resources to the people who need them,” Minges said.

She and other businessmen in the area pointed to the camp as a source of crime.

“My employees and my tenants feel like we’re no longer being held hostage,” Minges said. “It’s nice to be able to walk around the neighborhood and not be afraid.”

Advocates for the homeless say there is a lack of resources when it comes to helping those without homes.

“This comes at a time when there is not enough shelter,” said Rev. Ray Redlich of the New Life Evangelistic Center. “For those who choose not to go to emergency shelters, there really aren’t any safe alternatives for people to go to.”

Earlier in the week, a city spokesman said in a statement:

“The city has invested more than $7 million from American Rescue Plan Act funds to support our homeless neighbors, including mandating that all city-funded emergency shelters operate 24 hours a day and through the end of December winter operation on 31. St. Louis removes the riverside homeless camp

Sarah Y. Kim

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