Residents of Rancho Los Banos Mobile Park returned to a Los Banos City Council meeting July 20 to talk about the continuing problems they have with those experiencing homelessness.
Resident Claudia Nuñez was especially concerned for the children living in the park after a homeless man was seen roaming naked around the encampment.
Nuñez also said that the homeless individuals have been starting warming fires and this causes concern for residents with respiratory and mobility issues. For some disabled residents, it would be difficult or impossible for them to evacuate their mobile home in the case of a fire.
“That’s not safe for us; a lot of us have breathing problems,” Nunez said. “There are people that are disabled there that can’t move out of their beds. If their mobile home catches fire, they’re gone.”
The assistant manager of the mobile home park, Chandra Lewis, shared complaints she received from tenants about garbage being dumped in their backyard and an attempted car break in.
Lewis added that the illegal fires started by the homeless cause an unpleasant smell because they burn what is available to them.
With growing anger and fear among tenants at the mobile home park, Lewis expressed concern for the safety of both the residents of the park and the individuals experiencing homelessness.
“I’m afraid that either we will be hurt by the homeless, or the homeless will trespass, take advantage, and they will be the ones getting hurt,” Lewis said.
“You are putting us in a place of harm,” Lewis added, “and you are putting your homeless in a place of harm.”
Later in the meeting, Deborah Lewis, in her council member’s report, suggested that the council should consider relocating the homeless individuals.
“I don’t know where we can move them,” Lewis said, “but I think it’s time to consider moving them away from the residency because obviously it’s not working. I don’t think these people need to be terrorized like this anymore.”
Council member Refugio Llamas also mentioned considering relocation in his report.