Due to the pandemic, many people have lost their jobs and their homes, leading many families into unsheltered homelessness. Organizers with the Coalition on Homelessness (COH) have been reaching out to vehicularly housed folks who live on Winston Street and Lake Merced Boulevard next to San Francisco State University, aiming to provide support and permanent solutions to people living in RVs. Vehicularly housed residents told the COH that they face several daily challenges, including a lack of access to drinking water,
“Homes not barricades!! Homes not barricades!!”
These are the words chanted by protesters marching through the streets of the Tenderloin. Some were carrying police barricades, while others held signs that read ‘DEFUND SFPD,” “Rent is Theft” and “Black Homes Matter”. Others were equipped with medical supplies and sustenance, and in the back you could hear the Brass Liberation orchestra playing their instruments brightly to the beat of the chants.
Community organizations such as House the Bay,
Almost prophetically, Ronnie Goodman made an etching of people marching in the street and carrying a banner that reads “No More Homeless Deaths,” one in a myriad of drawings, paintings and engravings he produced.
After a lifetime of creating art while homeless or incarcerated, on August 7, Ronnie Lamont Goodman was found dead in his tent outside the Redstone Building in San Francisco’s Mission District, where he intermittently stayed and stored his drawings and illustrations.
Already normalized by COVID-19 “shelter in place” conditions that were prompted by the pandemic, housed and unhoused San Franciscans alike found themselves beset by a curfew that Mayor London Breed imposed on City residents for five nights from May 31 through June 4.
Through demonstrations and vocal outcry, community members rebuked the City’s response to nationwide protests against the killing of George Floyd and countless African Americans slain by police officers as part of the nation’s systemic and social racism.
On Friday afternoon several dozen people gathered outside the unassuming Palms Motel in Oakland, CA with signs reading “Housing is a Human Right” and “Hotels Not Graves.” Inside, Stefani Echeverría-Fenn, an adjunct classics lecturer who herself was formerly homeless and has lived in the neighborhood for 11 years, has chained herself in the bathroom of a small room. She has been demanding that the City of Oakland offer hotel rooms where she has helped set up for her unhoused neighbors at the intentional encampment at 37th Street and Martin Luther King,
by Keith McHenry
“This cause is a great cause and we’re tired of being treated like dirt. We’re not, we’re human beings. We bleed just like you and we’re good people. We need a safe place and this is a safe place right here.” – Deseire Quintero
Volunteers with Santa Cruz Food Not Bombs wait outside what had been a large homeless camp that welcomed visitors for over one half year.
An armored vehicle was parked outside the house on Magnolia Street in Oakland when a SWAT team dressed in what looked like military fatigues broke down the door. Deputies from the Alameda County Sheriff’s Department swarmed in to carry away their targets. So what threat was the police force sent in to pacify? What danger warranted all the police, the guns, the fatigues, the vehicle meant to respond to terrorism threats?
By Ben Baczkowski
On December 11, 2019, San Francisco city officials officially announced the opening of the Vehicle Triage Center (VTC) located on San Jose Avenue near Balboa Park BART station. The yearlong pilot program will provide a secure parking location and targeted services for folks living in their vehicles, and is the first safe parking facility of its kind in San Francisco’s history. The site includes up to 30 parking spaces with mobile blackwater pumping services,
Thief: The City of SF – DPW, SFPD and Caltrans
Interview with Crystal by the Stolen Belonging team, January 31, 2019, Bayview District, San Francisco.
Crystal: My name is Crystal and I’ve been here since 2002, but I grew up in the North Bay. I’ve been in every district and neighborhood in the city at one point or another.
The sweeps really suck. It’s happened a few times in the last month or two.
Patrolling and controlling our public spaces— sidewalks, streets and parks— Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) are privatizing our downtowns and main thoroughfares. Our public spaces are becoming corridors and shopping centers that are welcoming consumers with open arms and excluding everyone else. Most particularly impacted by this emerging trend are the houseless communities, who are seeing these areas to rest and sleep, free from harassment and criminalization, shrink.
BIDs have been growing significantly across the United States.