NEW BEDFORD (WBSM) — Mayor Jon Mitchell and Ward 1 Councilor Leo Choquette have responded to Councilor at Large Shane Burgo’s motion to discuss a potential “authorized” homeless encampment in New Bedford.

“Yeah, we’re not doing that,” Mitchell said in his weekly appearance on WBSM’s SouthCoast Now with Chris McCarthy Wednesday morning.

Choquette echoed that sentiment in an appearance on The Barry Richard Show that afternoon. Choquette represents the area Burgo mentioned as a potential location for the encampment, in an open field on Shawmut Avenue near the New Bedford Regional Airport that would also have an effect on Ward 3, represented by Councilor Shawn Oliver.

“There will never be a homeless encampment like that in Ward 1 or Ward 3,” Choquette said. “Councilor Oliver and I, we’ll fight tooth and nail and do whatever we have to do to prevent that from happening.”

READ MORE: Burgo Wants to Explore "Authorized" Homeless Encampment in New Bedford

Mitchell said during his appearance that New Bedford tries to “deal with the challenge” of homelessness “in an adult way.” He said they work to get people the help that they need, while not allowing encampments to “take root.”

“We don’t want permanent encampments in the city, and we don’t have them,” he said.

“Because New Bedford has been on top of it and addressed it in a responsible way, we don’t have permanent encampments," Mitchell said. "We do get some people into the services, it’s really hard to get them into the services. You tell them ‘you can’t stay here, you’ve got to come in.’ That’s been our approach and I think it’s worked as well as it could.”

Choquette said he “didn’t want anyone to worry” that the plan might come to fruition, calling it not even “something that’s fathomable.”

“On many levels, this plan is ill-conceived, not only is it a danger to the residents of this city, it’s a danger to the very people that Councilor Burgo is trying to help,” Choquette said.

He also said that it would be “tantamount to political suicide” if Burgo pushed forward with the plan, which Burgo had told Richard he did support.

“I like Councilor Burgo a lot. He has a big heart and I admire him, that he wants to change the world, but let me be direct on this point: we will never allow Ward 1 or Ward 3 to be used as a test tube for a social experiment,” Choquette said.

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