Home USA News ‘Why did it take so long?’: Spokane city and county officials report...

‘Why did it take so long?’: Spokane city and county officials report on Camp Hope


SPOKANE, Wash. – More than 400 people are still living at the camp Nov. 15, a week after Spokane city and county leaders hoped to clean up Camp Hope.

Local officials are now talking about getting the state, and nonprofits have stepped in to get people out of the camp quickly.

“It shouldn’t take decades or years or months, but weeks to rid people of the cold and conditions of Camp Hope, but why has it taken so long?” Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezavich said.

During a news conference Tuesday, joined by leaders of the city of Spokane and Spokane County, the Spokane County Sheriff pointed to Gov. Jay Inslee.

“What I really want to say is that maybe it’s obvious that it’s not just the state that’s in this game. To be successful, we must work with all levels of government and nonprofits,” said Washington Governor Jay Inslee.

Inslee made a surprise appearance at camp on Sunday, aside from going to a basketball game.

“I guess my question will be when the governor will come and talk to the elected leaders of this community to resolve this issue,” Kniazovich said.

According to the Washington Department of Transportation, there are currently 445 people living at the site, and 22 people have permanently moved out of the camp. During the summer, the number of residents of the “Hope” camp was more than 600 people.

“Our job is to bring people back in from the cold by providing them with a warm place to stay, a bed, food, access to showers, and connections to services while they wait for permanent housing,” said Spokane Mayor Nadine Woodward.

Spokane County has invested half a million dollars to add more beds, showers and office space for the Trent City Shelter.

“We’re inviting commerce and the Empire Health Foundation to come and be a part of this conversation so we can really do the right thing for people who are experiencing the cold,” said Spokane County Commissioner Mary Cooney.

Watch our recorded live video of the press conference HERE

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