Our budget campaign to house San Franciscans and keep San Franciscans housed has come to fruition and due to hard work and organizing, many victories were achieved for unhoused San Franciscans. For one, the second installment of funding for Our City Our Home, Proposition C, which passed in November 2018, is about to hit the streets, and it will result in dramatic numbers of people having the opportunity to exit homelessness. In addition, the Coalition’s Housing Justice Work Group, alongside the Homeless Emergency Service Providers Association (HESPA), campaigned for additional resources to augment Prop. C and further fill unmet needs. Prop. C generates over $300 million per year for housing, shelter, mental health services and homelessness prevention. In addition, in this budget cycle, HESPA garnered $53 million for unhoused people over two years. In sum, we are talking about over 4,000 housing opportunities for homeless people, 1,000 shelter beds, prevention for thousands and behavioral health services for thousands of unhoused people as well.
Human and Civil Rights
- CART – Compassionate Alternative Response Team was funded at $3 million to respond to 65,000 calls relating to homelessness that police are currently answering and to instead have an effective, safe, solutions based response to homelessness.
- One police academy, 15 vacant positions and $3 million in police overtime were reduced from the budget.
- The Mayor initially tried to cut the four 24-hour bathrooms that existed prior to the pandemic out of the budget, but funding for these were replaced and another 24-hour bathroom, as well as five part-time bathrooms, were added
- Our City Our Home
- Acquisitions: at least 825 units will be purchased with funding for operating costs for adults, families and youth
- Permanent Private Housing Market Subsidies (flex pool): 650 adults, families and youth will have rental assistance to afford their own place
- Time limited housing subsidies: 265 adults and youth will have an opportunity to move into housing, with rental assistance for a period of time with the expectation they will be able to take over the rent on their own after a couple years.
- Subsidies: 172 subsidies for families, seniors and people with disabilities.
- Bridge housing for 25 youth who have acute behavioral health challenges.
- Our City Our Home: Over 1,000 new shelter beds were funded, including funding for RV parks with 100 spots, and a new 50-bed navigation center for justice-involved people, and hotel rooms for youth, pregnant people, families and domestic violence victims. This included funding to permanently operate the 120 trailers at the port, and to fund 190 tent sites through 2023.
- HESPA: some of the emergency needs were funded with OCOH as noted above; 100 nightly hotel vouchers for homeless youth, 26 nightly hotel vouchers for families, and (FINALLY!) a dignified drop-in shelter for 40 families.
A number of mental health initiatives were funded in the budget, many of which were fought for by homeless community members and their allies. A large portion of the mental health investments were part of Mental Health SF, legislation that passed in 2019, and funded by Our City Our Home, Prop. C.
- Our City, Our Home
- 343 additional beds in a variety of intervention styles, from managed-alcohol to traditional abstinence-based programs, step-down residential beds, board and care, TAY residential and co-op beds. In addition, an unspecified number of beds will be acquired.
- Street crisis capacity was dramatically expanded with the funding of seven Street Crisis Response Teams, follow-up overdose teams, telehealth and street crisis expansions. Behavioral health in shelter and drop-ins was also funded.
- Care coordination for 1,500 clients and 865 intensive case management slots were funded.
- Funding was allocated for a mental health service center that would serve as centralized intake had its hours expanded.
- Overdose prevention was funded to have clinicians follow up with care for those who survived an overdose to prevent future overdoses and improve health
- Behavioral health services for 2,600 supportive housing tenants was funded as well.
- Targeted services for TAY and transgender population was funded as well.
- Harm reduction therapy center was also funded to have ongoing care for individuals challenged by substance use.
- Behavioral Health for 75 children, 500 youth and 800 adults in shelters and drop-ins was funded.
- Our City Our Home
- Eviction prevention legal services and back rent for 5,000 households
- Eviction prevention specifically for 2,000 folks living in supportive housing.
- Prevention including shallow housing subsidies to keep folks in their homes for 416 veterans and 1,000 justice-involved individuals
- Problem solving for 1,000 youth, 1,000 families and 2,000 adults which includes money for very short subsidies or other random services to help someone get back in housing if at all possible.
- Cameo House, which was about to close and serves justice-involved families, is going to stay open with general fund dollars.
- Legal services for unhoused individuals to connect them with and protect public benefits.
- Direct cash aid for homeless youth was funded with OCOH funds
- Our City Our Home: Workforce Earn and Learn to help folks make money and better be able to pay their rents and stay in housing for 2,000 adults, 2,000 families and 1,000 youth.
- HESPA: Workforce asks for homeless adults, families and youth were not funded.