The city of Fullerton began enforcement of enhanced parking regulations along Valencia Ave. beginning April 30, where many folks living in their RVs had been parking. During the enforcement, all RVs and cars parked illegally were made to move, and around 10 vehicles were towed. Prior to this, the City had posted notifications about the new regulations.
This particular stretch of Valencia is in an industrial area of the City and has seen an increase in not just RVs, but commercial trucks and cars from nearby auto repair shops parked illegally. Nearby business owners had complained about the impact of the lack of parking enforcement.
In the weeks leading up to enforcement, members of the faith-based and non-profit community worked with the City to assist those living in their RVs.
“The Faith based community, City Net, County Mental Health Staff, Pathways of Hope, Wound Walk, and City Staff were on site offering services over 20 times to all people located on Valencia,” Fullerton’s Deputy Director of Community and Economic Development Kellee Fritzal said. “Several RVs were provided mechanical assistance, registration, smog checks for free along with shelter beds…Staff continues to offer services.”
The City also plans to begin enforcement of parking regulations along nearby Walnut where other RVs are parked.
Among those who have worked to assist those living in RVs is Enedina Clements of the Tri-Parish Collaborative.
“We went RV by RV to determine the specific needs and hopes of the RV dwellers,” Clements said. “We encountered many older individuals…many of them had limited financial resources, modest social security or SSI benefits. Not enough to rent an apartment. Sadly, we encountered many folks with serious health issues.”
Due to this outreach, some found shelter in Fullerton’s Navigation Center, some left to stay with family, and others simply moved their RVs to other towns.
“The people did not disappear,” Father Dennis Kriz of the Tri-Parish Collaborative said. “Most of them simply scattered and the relationships that we’ve made with them continue.”
Last year, Fullerton had a “Safe Parking” program, but it ended in January. Currently, there is no designated place for those living in RVs to park in Orange County, and many cities (like Fullerton) have passed ordinances making it more difficult for them to have a place to park.
The next step is “insisting that County and our (Orange County) Supervisor Doug Chaffee find a location for those living in their vehicles to park safely,” Clements said.
Categories: Local News