Safety and Dignity by the Water

By publication time, the votes in last month’s special mayoral election will show that London Breed has prevailed.

As San Francisco’s mayor, she will own the City’s response to homelessness, just as her immediate predecessors, Mark Farrell and the late Ed Lee, did.

That response in the last two years included sweeping sidewalk encampments. These operations, headed by the Police Department, with assistance from the Departments of Public Works and Homelessness and Supportive Housing,

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Budget Justice in City Hall

On June 18th the Budget Justice Coalition, a collaboration of more than 40 community-based and labor organizations serving impoverished and poor communities in San Francisco, rallied on the steps of City Hall to to demonstrate that the city’s budget should increase resources to address the unmet needs of the city’s most disenfranchised populations. The Board of Supervisors hosted a public hearing to hear from the people of San Francisco before voting on the final budget on June 27th.

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Prisoner Strike Planned

The United States incarcerates the highest number of people in the world, both in absolute and relative  terms. But prisoners and abolitionists are challenging the foundations of incarceration. Over the past decade, a prisoners’ movement has arisen within facilities. Prison actions have been increasing in intensity and frequency.

What follows is a press release form April 2018 by Jailhouse Lawyers Speak, calling for a two-week national strike beginning Aug. 21, the anniversary of George Jackson’s assassination,

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“Abolish ICE”: Families Belong Together Rally

More than 300 people gathered at Embarcadero Plaza on Saturday, June 23 to protest the Trump Administration’s inhumane “Zero Tolerance” child separation policy at the U.S.-Mexico border.  The “Families Belong Together Rally” was just one of hundreds of associated events held across the country protesting the separation of children from their parents, and their indefinite imprisonment in Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention centers (read: concentration camps).  

 

Supporters began streaming into the plaza at 9:30 a.m.

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You Can Fight It, Don’t Let It Beat You

The following is a first-person account from Jesus Perez, a longtime member of the Coalition on Homelessness, on a recent health episode and its ensuing hospitalization. It is also a story of resilience. To donate to Jesus’s recovery fund, go to https://www.gofundme.com/helptxutxo.

At first, when I went to the Coalition on Homelessness Board of Director’s meeting, I was okay, but then when I came to the office I started having this pain,

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“Contempt for the Poor in US Drives Cruel Policies,” says UN expert

GENEVA (4 June 2018) – The United States’ principal strategy for dealing with extreme poverty is to criminalise and stigmatise those in need of assistance, a report by a UN independent expert has found.

“For one of the world’s wealthiest countries to have 40 million people living in poverty and over five million living in ‘Third World’ conditions is cruel and inhuman,” the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston,

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Street Sheet: June 5th Election Recap (SF City-County Propositions)

A hectic election cycle has come and gone in San Francisco. The dust is settling as Mark Leno is making a concession speech and London Breed is preparing to take office, and San Franciscans are grappling with the implications of propositions passing or failing. Proposition F passed this cycle, meaning that the city will now provide legal representation for tenants facing eviction, while Propositions D and H were defeated, which would have respectively taxed the lease of commercial properties for low- and medium-income housing and homeless services and permitted SFPD to develop a policy governing Taser use without the established oversight of the Police Commission.

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How I was a junkie for one day, or Dude, you have to love your folks.

I heard too many times from people struggling  with addiction about their challenges getting any help, including even medical services. Nobody is taking their needs seriously. As we know from the American mental health manuals, junkies “always complain and they always lie”.

 

Recently though several authors came forward with a completely different approach, protesting the dehumanization of those who are self-medicating to the point of losing control over substances which initially helped them to tolerate otherwise unbearable challenges of life.  

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Police at Pride: A Paradox

At the Christopher Street Pride Parade in 1973, Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera marched with their group, Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries (STAR), and were invited to speak as leaders of gay liberation. However when Sylvia Rivera was introduced to speak, she was met with protest that left her with only one choice – yell over their outcry. “Y’all better quiet down. I’ve been tryin’ to get up here all day, for your gay brothers,

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BART Access Impacts Homeless People

Dear Board of Supervisors and concerned citizens,

I am writing you as a concerned disabled resident of San Francisco in regards to the new $1.2 million proposal to “improve” the MUNI/BART Elevators at Powell and Civic Center Stations.  This item proposal was presented by Tim Chan yesterday (5/18/18) at the Mayor’s Office on Disability meeting at City Hall, which I attended remotely. I am specifically concerned that this project has absolutely nothing to do with helping the disabled and everything to do with further prosecuting and criminalizing the poor and communities of color in the Tenderloin area for fare evasion.

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