The American Civil Liberties Union, Community Alliance of Lane County and the Civil Liberties Defense Center all joined forces with Occupy Eugene.
They’re concerned about the Downtown Public Safety Zone and say the ordinance is discriminatory and confusing in nature.
“The burden is on the individual who is excluded to show why they shouldn’t be excluded. They’re not entitled to a lawyer,” said ACLU OR Executive Director David Fidanque.
Speakers and attendees say one of the biggest problems with exclusion zone is that in an effort to “sanitize” downtown. They say officers give out petty violations before offenders have even been to trial.
They also argue the exclusion zone targets the low-income, elderly and homeless populations.
“The council renewed it with the understanding that the police department would collect information about who was excluded and for what offenses. The police department didn’t do that,” Fidanque said.
Fidanque adds that police have had unbridled discretion when issuing exclusions.
Most said they hope the legislation will go away quietly at the end of April and not get renewed.
The ordinance has been in effect for more than three years.
If you’d like to give city councilors your two cents about the exclusion zone, there is a public hearing scheduled for Tuesday night.