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Oakland City Council votes to close Home Depot homeless encampment

Creative Commons user apalapala, used under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
The Home Depot

The fate of a homeless encampment near a Home Depot in East Oakland was decided early Wednesday morning at an Oakland City Council meeting. 

"When you look at Home Depot, those are students that came out of Castlemont, Fremont High School that have entry level jobs there. Those are jobs that are being created, that are open to neighbors." -Noel Gallo

Store representatives and employees say the encampment has caused problems with public health and crime. Advocates for the homeless say they need housing. The council decided unanimously to temporarily close a street behind the hardware store, which will block off access to the encampment site.

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Jeneé Darden is an award-winning journalist, author, public speaker and proud Oakland native. She hosts the weekly arts segment Sights & Sounds and covers East Oakland for KALW. Jenee has reported for NPR, Marketplace, KQED, KPCC, The Los Angeles Times, Ebony magazine, Refinery29 and other outlets. In 2005, she reported on the London transit bombings for Time magazine. Prior to coming to KALW, she hosted the podcast Mental Health and Wellness Radio.