Since the Boston City Council approved the ordinance that would prohibit the use of tents on public property, including city streets, it officially went into effect November 1st. The stated goal of this ordinance is to double down on the City’s public health-led approach to homelessness and substance abuse, and it is one part of the administration’s plan to address the crisis at Mass and Cass. The Newmarket BID was heavily involved in the process of moving the encampment on Atkinson Street out of the area safely and effectively.

The City has reopened Atkinson Street as a usable public road, and has opened a 30 bed “safe sleeping area” for some of those in need of shelter space at 725-727 Massachusetts Avenue. Although the BID had serious concerns about the location of the safe sleeping area, and the nearby businesses and residents are opposed to it, we are working closely with the Mayor’s Office to make this plan work in the best way possible and our Security Team is ready, as always, to respond to any aftereffects from the displacement of the encamped community.

The ongoing coordination, communication, and response with the Mayor’s team, city officials, outreach staff, and healthcare professionals has been key to keeping the gatherings to a minimum. Residents and businesses are encouraged to use the Boston 311 app to text or call if groups are noticed around the area. As always, call 911 in an emergency.

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