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Ban on sleeping in public downtown approved

West Palm Beach proposes ordinance to prohibit camping and sleeping in public.

Across from the downtown West Palm Beach waterfront along Flagler Drive is where Elizabeth Hubbard lives.

“On the outside of them doors right here, “Hubbard said while pointing to an outdoor complex.

Her day starts at 6:00 a.m. Her focus is surviving.

“Then go straight to St. Ann’s, take a shower and eat some breakfast,” she said.

Hubbard says she first started experiencing homelessness 10 years ago after losing both parents.

“I took care of them for so long until they passed,” she said.

“When I lost them, I lost everything.

Francky Pierre Paul, an advocate for people experiencing homelessness says stories like Elizabeth’s aren’t uncommon. He’s concerned about an ordinance proposed by city to prohibit sleeping and camping in certain areas.

The agenda states that enforcement would only be applicable after the city has undertaken significant outreach measures, including offering social services, housing, or shelter assistance where available.

“The thing is, the resources is there, but it’s scarce, “Pierre Paul said.

Elizabeth says she is now at the top of a list for services. She is hoping to make it to that date.

“I want to do what Francky does and help people, “she said.