YUMA, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - Homeless encampments have been popping up around the Yuma area recently raising some concerns.
There were encampments spotted near Yuma City Hall and behind the three water towers on 16th Street just this week.
Some locals may be concerned or curious as to the laws regulating homelessness, so we spoke to the Yuma Police Department to hear what laws they should be following.
“It is against the law to solicit aggressively, it is also against the law to impede traffic, to block sidewalks, it is also illegal to be in city parks after hours when they are closed,” said Yuma Police Department Officer Christina Fernandez.
With the unknown of where these people will go to live, some find it important to try to help them find a place to stay, like the Crossroads Mission.
“It’s important because now they have a safe haven, where to go especially when it’s raining or like our weather here is so unpredictable sometimes it’s mild sometimes it’s harsh,” said Crossroads Mission Outreach Coordinator Griselda Baro.
While having a place to go might be ideal for most, but a local homeless man says there should be structure and rules.
“That would be fantastic, that would be that would be seriously righteous… [but] I think everybody should be orientated you know a lot of people [say] 'oh rules oh crude no no no' you know but hey you got to remember you got to respect yourself and care for yourself as well as your surroundings and area,” said Robert Joseph Richards, a local homeless man.
With more than 13,000 people experiencing homelessness in Arizona last year, it will remain to be seen if even more homeless people make it to our area in the months to come.