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Homeless camping on the rise in Colorado Springs - KOAA.com | Continuous News | Colorado Springs and Pueblo

Homeless camping on the rise in Colorado Springs

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COLORADO SPRINGS -

Many drivers on I-25 are noticing what looks like movement of homeless campers this week. They have loads of stuff they are hauling away from the south side of downtown Colorado Springs.  Front loaders and dump trucks are also busy in the area along Fountain Creek.

News 5 went to the area to find out what is behind the activity. There is a large scale clean-up of the camps. It is an environmental and health necessity because of all the trash, debris and waste caused by the camps.

A decade back, clean-ups like this would happen every couple of months over one or two days. Now there is so much debris, this one along the greenway northwest of Tejon Street is happening over two weeks. “ I can normally tell you…it’s 30 yards or it’s 40 years, said Keep Colorado Springs Beautiful, Executive Director Dee Cunningham, “This is hundreds of yards so far, since Tuesday,”

The reason is because of the growing number of homeless campers. “Right now we’re 50% higher,” said Cunningham.

While the clean-up is first about health and environment is also enforcement of laws. Camping like this is illegal in Colorado Springs,  Larry Yonker, the President &CEO of Springs Rescue Mission, says enforcement like this can serve another purpose. “To try and get them [the homeless] into an environment where they can get help. Yonker says the rescue mission is also seeing increasing numbers. “They’re definitely up.”

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