Supreme Court Allows Criminalization of Homelessness

story and photos by Jeremiah Hayden

The United States Supreme Court issued a decision in Grants Pass v. Johnson on June 28. The case out of Oregon will broadly impact how local governments write homelessness policy across the nation.

The U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision in Grants Pass v. Johnson on June 28, reversing the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals injunction barring the southern Oregon city of Grants Pass from enforcing ordinances banning sleeping in public spaces.


Op-ed: Still Cruel and Unusual, Despite SCOTUS Ruling

by Lukas Illa

In the waning hours of its 2024 term, the U.S. Supreme Court published its decision on Grants Pass v. Johnson, which criminalized the existence of homeless people. In the days that followed, homeless advocates in the Bay Area pointed to the fact that in his majority opinion, Trump-appointed Justice Neil Gorsuch cited the amicus brief filed by San Francisco officials eight times.

The City’s amicus brief,


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,


‘5150s’ Expected to Worsen Under New California Laws

by Cathleen Williams, Homeward Street Journal

Maggie, an activist and advocate for the unhoused community, is a single mom who grew up in Venice, California. (Maggie is a pseudonym, to protect her privacy.) Today, few can afford to actually rent in Venice—Maggie lives in an oversized van: “Barely legal,” she says. 

When her daughter became delusional, hallucinating, paranoid, reaching a crisis point in her struggle with mental health disability,


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.


SCOTUS Tears Up Unhoused People’s Constitutional Rights

statement by the Western Regional Advocacy Project (WRAP)

Washington D.C. – The Supreme Court issued a decision today in the landmark case Grants Pass v. Johnson. This case centers on whether governments can fine and arrest unhoused people who have no other choice but to sleep outside. As expected, our Dred Scott-loving Supreme Court diluted people’s 8th Amendment protections against Cruel and Unusual punishment OR …The court upheld this ruling deciding it is indeed cruel and unusual punishment to cite and arrest people for lodging when no shelter is available  

Lower courts had ruled that Grants Pass practices were in fact found to be unconstitutional as they were arresting and citing unhoused people for camping,


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.


Op-ed: Supervisor’s Sobriety Plan Adds Roadblocks to Supportive Housing 

by Jordan Davis

Five years after tenants experienced a giant leap forward in permanent supportive housing (PSH), they could suffer a gigantic leap backwards if Supervisor Matt Dorsey’s proposed legislation for “recovery housing” passes. 

At a June 18 press conference, Dorsey formally asked the City Attorney’s office to draft legislation requiring that 25% of the City’s PSH units be dedicated to sober housing. It also would align with proposed state legislation allowing up to 25% of state funding to cities for such housing and related services—effectively placing a moratorium on new PSH.  


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,