Crisis Response: A Shelter Client Advocate Reflects

As San Francisco starts to slowly emerge back into a false sense of normality, I wonder where that will leave the homeless population staying in “shelter In place“ hotels and shelters scattered throughout the city. Before I cover that, I must recollect what events took place to get us here today. 

Back in March, everyone was on the fence about just how serious COVID-19 would be. No one could fully grasp then just how long we all would be under shelter in place,

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(UC) PoLice Terror in a Pandemic- UC Hastings Demands Sweeps of Houseless San Franciscans

barricades around the Tenderloin community garden

by Tiny of POOR Magazine

“They came by and took our tents,  said we had to go and not come back or we would be arrested, you know a sweep” said Johnell, 48 , a black disabled, houseless elder and RoofLESS Radio reporter who lived in a tent at Larkin and Mcallisters streets since April when Covid19 struck. Johnell and his wife both got a tent from POOR Magazine’s radical redistribution /RoofLEss radio cru who distributes masks,

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In the Time of COVID-19: Generating Awareness for Sexually Transmitted Diseases

“I was afraid when I was diagnosed. Now I encourage others to get tested for HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus). With daily antiretroviral therapy (ART), I maintain a healthy lifestyle. I haven’t had many side effects and am very thankful that I got tested,” said the woman when talking to her at my former job at Saint Boniface Hospital in Haiti. I still remember her face, beautiful and bright-eyed with a smile so big you would think she owned the world.  

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Outreach Diary — Our system isn’t ‘trauma-informed’… it’s causing trauma

I’ve been out on the street and with folks in encampments a bunch lately, but I haven’t really been writing about it. Part of the reason I haven’t been writing is because by the end of the day I’m usually still trying to get through a ton of work or my brain is just complete mush. I’m really behind on emails and returning phone calls, so sorry if you’ve reached out and I haven’t gotten back to you.

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San Francisco Drags Feet Moving Tenderloin Residents into Shelter-in-Place Hotels

While the Tenderloin Plan began to be implemented on Thursday, only 16 people were moved into hotels, a mere 5% of the 300 person goal.

Friday, June 12th — Early Thursday morning, San Francisco’s Health Streets Operation Command (HSOC) arrived in the Tenderloin under the pretense of placing at least 300 of the Tenderloin’s unhoused residents into Shelter-in-Place Hotels. Clutching their lists of names, city workers scrambled down Turk street struggling to locate some of the people on their list that they would be moving into a nearby hotel,

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Oppose Nancy Tung & Geoffrey Gordon-Creed

George Floyd. Breonna Taylor. Ahmaud Arbery. Erik Salgado was killed and his girlfriend shot in Oakland this past weekend, while last week, San Francisco resident Sean Monterrosa was killed in Vallejo.  This month has been a powerful reminder of what happens without police accountability. 

Nancy Tung and Geoffrey Gordon-Creed were nominated by Mayor London Breed to fill two seats on the Police Commission.  These seats must be approved by the Board of Supervisors;

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In the Time of COVID-19: Prioritizing Care for Vulnerable Populations

“We are always the last group that is given considerations during policy-making decisions,” said one formerly homeless man when I interviewed him last year. “Even when the policies are drafted, they often don’t address the root cause of homelessness,” he added. Through my interviews with people affected by homelessness over the years, I have learned to approach my work in public health through a different lens, one in which marginalized communities are at the forefront. 

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Tenderloin Community Organizations and Property Owners Demand UC Hastings Pledge to Respect Unhoused Person’s Human Rights in Lawsuit

On May 27th, the Coalition on Homelessness and 27 other community organizations, many of whom are property owners in the Tenderloin sent a letter to UC Hastings Dean and Chancellor David Faigman imploring him to sign a pledge ensuring that any lawsuit settlement or outcomes, from the May 4th suit, would not agree to sweep or criminalize any unhoused Tenderloin residents. 

Most importantly we ask that they comply with the CDC’s interim guidelines on unsheltered homelessness and COVID-19 which has instructed counties not to confiscate tents and more recently been updated stating:

If individual housing options are not available,

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Why Mayor Breed’s Texts on Homelessness Matter

“Man sleeping on bench on Hayes St. near Gough. Can someone come asap, I am in the area having lunch,” San Francisco Mayor London Breed texted police Chief William Scott in August of 2019. 

“Copy. We are sending a team,” he responded two minutes later. 

Eight minutes after that, when the police had presumably not shown up to escort the homeless man away, Breed texted Chief Scott again.

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A Palace to Us: Unhoused 37MLK Residents Demand Hotel Rooms, Occupy Palms Motel in Oakland 

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,

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