Today, Downtown Spokane Partnership (DSP) President and CEO Emilie Cameron released the following statement on the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in the City of Grants Pass v. Johnson on June 28, 2024:

“Last spring, the DSP joined in an amicus curiae brief requesting that the Ninth Circuit’s decision in the Grants Pass v. Johnson case be reversed. Today, thanks to the advocacy of the DSP and many others, the Supreme Court reversed the decision (along with the prior Martin v. City of Boise decision), recognizing that the Ninth Circuit’s ruling made it more difficult, not less, to help the homeless accept shelter. Downtown Spokane should be a welcoming and safe space for everyone and with today’s ruling, the City of Spokane must ensure all Spokanites have access to clean and non-threatening public spaces.

“Cities need a range of tools to address the crisis of homelessness, which includes the need for enforcement in dynamic and flexible ways. The practical effect of prior decisions created a special set of exemptions, privileges and rights for some without complying with laws that apply to others, including the scourge of public drug use. We urgently need to keep our community safe, including the most vulnerable experiencing homelessness. Enforcing laws that keep our community safe and healthy can co-exist with intentional focus and intervention to break the cycle of homelessness.

“The DSP remains committed to working with partners from both public and private sectors to confront and enhance coordination, collaboration and accountability.  And the DSP will continue to focus on our Safe and Clean programs, including our Downtown Ambassadors, who provide supplemental year-round security and hospitality services to downtown residents, workers and visitors.”

Petition for Writ

Final Amicus Brief