The Minneapolis Park Board invited the homeless to take over the city’s parks via a resolution passed Wednesday night.
“Be It Resolved, that the MPRB is committed to providing people currently experiencing homelessness refuge space in Minneapolis parks,” reads the resolution that passed by the board. The resolution also ensures that Park Board officials “are authorized to take all necessary administrative actions to implement this resolution.”
This decision comes after the homeless began to take over Powderhorn Park, which is located in south Minneapolis. Rather than moving to expel the growing tent cities from the park, the board chose to approve the construction of similar encampments everywhere in Minneapolis.
Presently, photographs show that powderhorn park has been transformed into a tent city reminiscent of the homeless encampments that abound in California cities.
The homeless have taken over Powderhorn Park in south Minneapolis. In response, the City Park Board approved this behavior in all city parks. pic.twitter.com/unt3xkANLm
— Kyle Hooten (@KyleHooten2) June 19, 2020
Normally, the Minneapolis Code of Ordinances would prohibit anybody but the director of regulatory services from granting special exceptions against the city laws which prohibit camping in the parks.
However, Minnesota Governor Tim Walz enacted an executive order during the coronavirus pandemic that forbids any level of government in his state from sweeping or clearing encampments set up in parks unless their size poses a health risk, per the Star Tribune.
Note: This article was amended after publication to clarify the apparent legality of the Park Board’s order, taking into account Governor Walz’s executive order.