After Pilot Phase, Homeless Clean-Up Initiative Returns

Nov 28, 2019

This summer, we reported on an initiative where homeless people were hired to clean up after encampments in the downtown Eugene area. As KLCC’s Brian Bull reports, the service is back.

Clean-up tools at a recent USFS clean-up event in Oakridge.
Credit Brian Bull / KLCC

The initial launch in August was a pilot program. Six homeless people were trained to handle everything from basic garbage to biohazards. The City of Eugene funded the venture for three months.

Flyers for the clean-up service that launches in December.
Credit Brian Bull / KLCC

Arwen Maas-DeSpain is with Carry It Forward, the group behind the service. She says this time, there will be three trained homeless people being paid minimum wage, and the service will be supported by fees.

“We’re also going to try to incentivize businesses to host porta-potties if they’re willing," adds Maas-DeSpain.

"We’d have reduced fees and then we can help keep them cleaner than they would, normally. But it would increase access to toilets, which is a big deal, and hopefully alleviate some of the stress on the businesses.” 

Maas-DeSpain says the pilot phase taught her about liability insurance and managing for consistent worker attendance. 

The relaunch begins December 1st.   The base rate for a cleanup ranges between $45 - $60.

Copyright 2019, KLCC.