Fresno police Wednesday were sent to Ventura Street and Santa Fe Avenue in downtown Fresno to clear a homeless encampment under the Highway 41 underpass.
The department's Homeless Task Force is assigned to enforce the city's contentious homeless ordinance, passed by the city council in 2017.
Police Capt. Burke Farrah, who is in charge of the task force, said officers daily go to areas of the city where the homeless have set up camp sites.
Farrah said the five officers who are part of the unit advise homeless citizens of services available to them and also supervise the storage of their belongings, which are kept for them by the city for 60 days.
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Farrah said 98% of those contacted by police decline offers of temporary housing. Officers talk to about 500 people a month as part of the project, he added.
The task force starts its day near the Poverello House at F and Santa Clara streets. Officers supervise a cleanup of trash at the encampments and city heavy equipment operators haul about a ton of trash away daily, said Farrah.