Locked Out: Supportive Housing Denies Tenants Access to Community Areas

In 2008, the Salvation Army opened a community center at 242 Turk St. in San Francisco’s Tenderloin neighborhood. It’s a Ray & Joan Kroc Community Center, whose stated mission is to provide supportive health services and housing for formerly homeless adults, foster youth and veterans living with behavioral health conditions, and nurture a safe space for the community’s youth. Next to the center is Railton Place, an apartment complex owned by the Salvation Army and managed by the John Stewart Company,


Everybody Hurts: It’s All Part of Being Human 

by Jack Bragen

Many emotions that we attribute to human beings appear to be universal among all animal life, even insects and maybe even plant life. 

I have dealt with insect life invading my dwelling. I have adopted a policy of killing the bugs, because I feel strongly that I can’t coexist with “vermin.” When a bug realizes I’m after it, it will become fearful, and it will try anything at its disposal to evade death.


U.S. Supreme Court’s Decision in Grants Pass v. Johnson Guts Civil Rights Protections of Unhoused People Nationwide; Lawsuit Against the City of San Francisco Will Proceed

joint statement from the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights in the San Francisco Bay Area and American Civil Liberties Union-Northern California

San Francisco, Calif. – Today, in a landmark decision, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Grants Pass v. Johnson, a case that had barred cities from citing and arresting people simply for being homeless. This ruling is a stark departure from established legal precedent regarding the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment.


San Francisco’s Budget Battle: Balancing Safety and Social Services in Mayor Breed’s Proposal

by Solinna Ven, Renee Tian and Eliza Cieutat

Mayor London Breed’s budget proposal for fiscal years 2024-25 and 2025-26 has sparked significant controversy and is raising important questions about the city’s direction in addressing public safety, social services, and community well-being.

At the heart of Mayor Breed’s budget proposal is a notable increase in funding for law enforcement agencies, including the Police and Fire departments, District Attorney’s office and the Department of Emergency Management.


Criminals Among Us: They’re Not Always Who We Think They Are

by Jack Bragen

Criminals really exist. They aren’t just a figment of the imagination of political conservatives. Having been a victim of crime myself constitutes one of the reasons that I don’t agree with defunding police. Much of the time, the only thing that can get a criminal out of one’s face is the certainty that the cops are on their way. And I’m saying that as a mentally ill adult with an imperfect past,


Camp Resolution Wins Lawsuit Against Sac City 

story and photos by Isidore Mika Székely Manes-Dragan

Camp Resolution, the self-governing encampment for unhoused Sacramento residents, received a notice on March 28 for its nearly one hundred members to vacate by May 16, preceding the camp’s clearance on June 1.

On May 15, the residents and their allies organized and marched to City Hall, saying “no.” The city first extended the timeline for removal to May 31. Then the city called off the eviction on June 9.


The Greatest Lesson I’ve Learned Out Here

by Freeway

A former resident of the Wood Street tent community, which the city of Oakland swept last year, muses about events surrounding the eviction.

We’re finishing up the park clean-up today. This event was quickly pulled together because some neighbors bonded together to try to demonize us, particularly the people in those condos across the street. They are in some glorified hate groups. They even complained about the sawdust from the wood art my husband creates! 


A Futile Attempt to Make Money Foiled by Social Services

by Jack Bragen

The social services systems in California punish success and punish efforts at raising one’s standard of living and personal security—at least, that’s how it seems in my case. Even if your earnings are literally tiny, Social Security, the IRS, county food assistance and Medicaid all insist they need to know, and insist they all get their share.

As hard as I work at my two to three little-paid writing gigs,


In Memoriam Jimmy Flowers

by Tara Rosen

James Henry Beckett b. Oct. 31, 1955 d. Sept. 10, 2022

Jimmy Flowers – born James Henry Beckett – was born Halloween Eve. When he was 4 years old, his mother committed suicide by hanging herself in their Noe Valley flat, which led him to romanticize suicide, though he eventually grew out of it.

He was my boyfriend for ten years and my best friend for the last five years of his life.


These Researchers Lived Through Homelessness. Now, They’ve Analyzed It. 

Let This Radicalize You

The latest study of unhoused Californians made headlines, even though its findings are already considered common knowledge among people engaged with the issue. However, what was unusual about the research team investigating homelessness in California is that the team are formerly or currently unhoused residents of the Golden State—and similar groups are emerging around the state. 

Call them lived experience boards, lived expertise boards or community advisory boards—bodies with formerly and presently unhoused folk are becoming commonplace in nonprofit organizations and municipal agencies,