Battle on the Ballot: Criminalizing Camping

by TJ Johnston Advocates for homeless people in San Francisco are responding to one lawmaker’s ballot proposal to break homeless encampments with 24 hours’ notice with a competing plan from another lawmaker. Prior to the June 28 Board of Supervisors meeting, Supervisor Aaron Peskin announced he will put his own measure, largely as a counterpoint … Read more

The Cost Of Criminalizing Homelessness

by TJ Johnston In 2015, San Francisco spent $20.6 million enforcing so-called “quality of life” ordinances for more than 60,000 incidents, according to a recent City budgetary analysis. These “quality of life” ordinances, also commonly referred by advocates as “status crimes,” are ordinances that ticket individuals for everyday acts that homeless people are most likely … Read more

Affordable Justice: Debt Free SF

by Avni Desai We all know how the housing crisis has spiraled out of control; affordability is on everyone’s agenda in San Francisco. What we often forget is that there is an intricate web of systems that lead to poverty and homelessness in San Francisco. One of these is the court system and the way … Read more

City Funds Go for Super-Corporate Welfare

PERSONAL FOUL: “UNNECESSARY ROUGHNESS” CALLED ON MAYOR LEE As the San Francisco Bay Area was hosting its second ever Super Bowl, thousands of tourists attended week long festivities in “Super Bowl City” a 10-acre temporary village at the foot of Market Street and the Embarcadero area that was shut down to traffic to accommodate visitors. … Read more

Scott Wiener Advocates Taking Tents

Move Along to Where

Supervisor Scott Wiener sent tempers flaring with an official inquiry addressed to the chief of police, along with the head of Department of Public Works, heads of Mayor’s Office of HOPE, Department of Public Health and Department of Human Services, calling for enforcement of the anti-camping law. He stated “I am writing to officially inquire … Read more

The Right to Rest Act is Back

by TJ Johnston State Sen. Carol Liu (D – La Cañada-Flintridge) reintroduced the legislation on January 15. If passed, the act now known as Senate Bill 876, would protect people’s right to rest, sit, sleep, pray, share food in public or lie down unobtrusively without the threat of citation or arrest. In a statement, Liu … Read more

The Economy of Collapse or Why Homeless Lives Matter

By Vlad K My grandmother liked to tell me her stories of her childhood. It was a world of extended families where women never worked and where her Orthodox Jewish father had one modest income for the family of 13, but nobody ever had a situation when they have nothing to eat. It was the … Read more

Black History – Black Statistics

By Regina Bates and Michelle Daniels I would like to start with Libations to all who have come before us and paid with their lives! Who shed blood from whips, rape, chains, dogs, lynch mobs, bullets, fire bombs, drug infestations and incarceration. From the 1852 Speech of Fredrick Douglass; “What, to the American slave, is … Read more

Shelter From The Storm?

By Cat Callaway City Plans For Some New Shelter Beds in Anticipation of El Niño Rains The potential impact of the El Niño weather conditions requires preparation to protect property and persons. The homeless, facing the cold, the wet and the flooding head-on, most often with the aid only of a blanket or bedroll, are … Read more