The Impact of Law Enforcement and Ordinances on Homeless People in Sacramento

Chase Newell: Undergraduate Senior Thesis Project

My research is centers on how law enforcement effects the homeless community, specifically in Sacramento. I decided to focus on this after reading about the enforcement of anti-camping ordinances and quality of life laws in several ethnographies written by sociologists and an anthropologist. Ordinances vary from place to place, and even throughout parts of the same city. Studies have been conducted in numerous cities, including San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, and Austin. However, Sacramento presents a gap in the literature.  My project follows an ethnographic tradition, as I gained entry via a homeless shelter. I am conducting interviews to collect my data. I hope my work helps us learn how these laws, especially anti-camping laws, are enforced, and subsequently, how homeless individuals react emotionally and behaviorally to them.