Judge denies dismissal of central California homeless suit

February 15, 2022 GMT

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. (AP) — A judge has denied a motion to dismiss a lawsuit filed by five homeless residents and a nonprofit organization against the central California city of San Luis Obispo.

The plaintiffs, including Hope’s Village of SLO, contend unhoused individuals are being treated unlawfully for living outdoors or in their vehicles.

The city has issued dozens of fines and repeatedly conducted sweeps that have removed homeless individuals from camping spots in public areas.

Attorneys for the city sought a dismissal in December, contending the city has a right to enforce health, safety and environmental protection ordinances. They denied that the city has criminalized homelessness, as alleged in the lawsuit.

U.S. District Judge Cormac J. Carney ruled last week that the case can proceed to trial, the San Luis Obispo Tribune reported,

The city said in a statement that it hoped a dismissal would allow it to be “fully dedicated to delivering solutions, rather than defending our community against legal action.