WASHINGTON, D.C. — In Grants Pass V. Johnson, a lawyer made opening arguments, saying, “In 35 suits and counting, federal courts are now deciding everything from the exact size of campsites in San Rafael to the adequacy of empty beds at specific shelters like the Gospel rescue mission in Grants Pass, and cities are struggling to apply arbitrary shifting standards.”

The city is defending its penalties for outdoor camping. “Like cities nationwide, Grants Pass relies on camping laws to protect its public spaces. These generally applicable laws prohibit specific conduct and are essential to public health and safety.”

The U.S. Supreme Court justices had lots of questions, starting with Clarence Thomas.  “Which party has been held accountable for criminal trespass?”  “None of the, individuals who are currently in the case.” “What will the city do if you don’t prevail here?” ” The city’s hands will be tied. It will be forced to surrender its public spaces.”  The justices are expected to decide the case by June, which could impact the homeless and communities across the country.

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