from the Blaze:
SCOTUS lets 9th Circuit ruling stating that homeless people have a constitutional right to camp on public property stand
The case, which was brought to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals by a group of six current or former homeless people, challenges a Boise, Idaho, ordinance that prohibits the homeless from sleeping on public property, even if they have no other shelter to go to. The petitioners claimed that the statute violated their Eighth Amendment protection against cruel and unusual punishment, and the federal appeals court agreed with them, affirming a lower court’s ruling against Boise’s camping ordinance.
In September of last year, a majority of a three-judge panel ruled that “an ordinance violates the Eighth Amendment insofar as it imposes criminal sanctions against homeless individuals for sleeping outdoors, on public property, when no alternative shelter is available to them.”
The federal case over the camping ordinance began a decade ago in 2009 when a Boise-based civil rights lawyer filed a lawsuit on behalf of a group of people who had been ticketed under the city’s ordinance.
Figures from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development show that 35 percent of America’s homeless population were in “unsheltered locations such as on the street, in abandoned buildings, or in other places not suitable for human habitation” last year.