Alissa Johnson

Alissa Johnson is originally from Fargo, North Dakota, and has lived in Redding for about six years. She describes herself as the “chillest cellist of the North in the West.”

Alissa's Latest Articles

Opinion: My Life As A Criminal Sleeper

Over the last several months, unhoused Community Voices writer Alissa Johnson has been working her way through the court process after receiving citations for sleeping outside. In this essay, Johnson reflects on the additional burdens the local justice system has inflicted on her already challenging circumstances. It’s only her strong support net, she argues, that keeps the system from unfairly labeling her as a criminal, driving her further into society’s margins.

“We Don’t Count As Community To Them”: Unhoused Shasta County People Share Their Challenges And Some Solutions

Shasta County’s affordable housing and emergency shelter crisis has spurred serious community discussions about how to respond to the needs of the region’s growing unhoused community. Community Voices writer Alissa Johnson and others in the unhoused community respond to reader questions about the causes of homelessness and the solutions they’d like to see the community pursue.

Opinion: We, the Autistic People, and We, the Homeless People, Have Dreams Just Like Everyone Else

Hailed by local musicians as a “genius,” Alissa Johnson is an accomplished cellist and an activist for the human rights of autistic people. She is also homeless. In this piece she argues that her dual experiences as an autistic, and being without shelter, have repeatedly exposed her to interwoven stigma. Supportive systems are needed, she says, not to “fix” people but to partner with them as unique human beings with vibrant dreams.

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