Sacramento to make its tent-city permanent?

The tent-city in Sacramento, the capital of California, is so big and entrenched that the city is debating installing plumbing and other amenities. Meanwhile Sacramento's vacancy rate is higher than the national average: "10.4 percent of rental housing units are vacant and 4.8 percent of owned units are vacant."

The primitive settlement sits in the shadow of the state capitol and is home to about 300 people who have no toilets or running water, creating unsanitary conditions that advocacy groups worry could promote diseases like cholera. With the downturn in the economy and more working-class people losing their jobs and their homes, the tent city is expanding.

The mayor of Sacramento, Kevin Johnson, said in an interview that he wants to create a permanent tent city for the homeless, although he is not sure where it should be. He said he recognized that doing so would be difficult politically. But he said a permanent site could bring sanitation services and regulations like a ban on drugs and alcohol.

Sacramento and Its Riverside Tent City

(via Warren Ellis)

(Image: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)