U.S. Supreme Court to hear camping ban case that will impact Washoe County homeless ordinances

Publisher’s note: This story on how to deal with the homeless soon will be heard by the United States Supreme Court. The city of Susanville has struggled to find solutions to the homeless encampments along the Susan River, and those efforts may be affected by this court case.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday will hear oral arguments in Grants Pass v. Johnson to determine whether it is constitutional for local governments to make it a crime to live outside even when there is no space for them inside shelters.

A homeless camp in Susanville under the Richmond Road Bridge. File photo

Monday’s arguments coincide with the Washoe County Commission in March adopting a widely opposed ordinance that criminalizes people forced to live in their cars or to camp on public property. Las Vegas and Henderson are among the Nevada cities that signed onto an amicus brief in the case.

The Nevada Housing Justice Alliance opposes policies that turn low-income, houseless Nevadans into criminals. The NHJA condemns leaders at all levels of government who would attempt to arrest their way out of the housing crisis as opposed to supporting its citizens with meaningful housing policies that work.

Impacted community members, Nevada Housing Justice Alliance representatives will discuss the local crises in housing and homelessness in response to Supreme Court Case and recent passing of Washoe County ordinance at 11:30 a.m. on Monday, April 22, at the Washoe County Commission, 1001 E. 9th St.