Homelessness

City budget boosts homelessness spending, but not enough to meet demand

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The city budget that is now awaiting approval by the Board of Supervisors includes new funding for individuals and families facing homelessness, but community advocates say it doesn’t devote enough of the city’s rebounding revenues to addressing this growing problem.

Last Thursday, the Board of Supervisor’s Budget and Finance Committee approved $2.4 million in “add-backs” to homeless services, on top of the $2.3 million that Mayor Ed Lee pledged to supplement the city’s initiatives to curb the burgeoning number of San Francisco’s individuals and families becoming homeless.Read more »

You want scary? We've got an eviction map

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You want to see something frightening on a lovely afternoon? Check out this amazing interactive map of Ellis Act evictions in San Francisco put together by Brian Whitty.Read more »

Ammiano's on a roll

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Willie Brown, the former mayor and current unregistered lobbyist, has been trying to undermine Assemblymember Tom Ammiano for years. But take a look at two Ammiano bills this spring and you get a sense of how effective San Francisco's veteran representative can be.Read more »

Sequestration cuts would hit the Bay Area's most vulnerable

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While the looming federal budget cuts known as sequestration were designed to equally hit Democratic and Republican party priorities, from social services to the military budget, in the Bay Area they would disproportionately target society's most vulnerable citizens and strain already-stretched local agency budgets.

If Congress and the White House fail to forge a budget deal by March 1, the cuts could begin to withdraw $9-10 billion of federal support from the California. In the Bay Area, these cuts would have the biggest impact on low-income families, the homeless, victims of domestic violence, adults living with AIDS, and children ages 3-5.

Back in September, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee signed a U.S. Conference of Mayors' letter that called on federal lawmakers to resolve the budget conflict before the sequestration cuts could take effect, labeling the budget cuts "a threat" to local economies nationwide. Now, with the deadline looming, city officials and social service providers across the Bay Area are bracing for the impact. Depending to how the cuts are eventually allocated, San Francisco alone could lose more than $10 million in critical social services.

"All across the city, the sequestration hurts those most in need of services and support," Gentle Blythe, spokesperson with the San Francisco Unified School District, told the Guardian.

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Who's hungry for a 'Shrimp Dufty'? UPDATED

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I'm not really sure what the connection is between "homeless czar" and former Castro district supe Bevan Dufty embracing pescetarianism on his 58th birthday and raising money for an LGBT-friendly homeless shelter, but Sliderbar is certainly making it.

Tonight, Tue/26, 6-10:30pm, the Castro burger joint is hosting a fundraiser celebrating Dufty's birthday and creating a "shrimp sandwich" especially for him. (In case you're not up on such things, every successful restaurant opening in the Castro lately has been burger-based -- not sure if it's something to do with mainstreaming of gay culture or what but it's sizzling red meat everywhere -- so a seafood option is certainly welcomed. No horsemeat, please! j/k, Sliderbar, j/k)

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Homes Not Jails protesters released

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This article has been updated

Nineteen Homes Not Jails protesters who were arrested last night and held on felony charges of vandalism, conspiracy and burglary, many on bail as high as $325,000, have been released.

Their charges have not been dropped. Instead, those arrested have been "discharged pending further investigation," according to District Attorney spokesperson Stephanie Ong Stillman.Read more »

The rich, the poor and the state of SF

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The latest Forbes 400 is out, the list of the richest Americans, and a record number (according to my annual record-keeping) now live in San Francisco. This is a city with 18 people on the top-billionaires list -- and since the list cuts off at $1.1 billion, there are a lot of really, really rich San Franciscans who didn't quite make it this year. Read more »

Arrests after overnight 'San Francisco Commune' occupation

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After at least 100 people remained in a building at 888 Turk for almost 24 hours, police ended the occupation at 1:30 pm today, blocking off the street, and arrested more than 70.Read more »

Inside OccupySF's ongoing building takeover

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UPDATE 1:15 PM: Without warning or an order to disperse, riot police arriving by bus suddenly raided the building moments ago, making more than a dozen arrests so far. More soon as the story develops.

Editor's Note: Guardian staff writer Yael Chanoff reports from the inside of vacant building that Occupy SF has taken over in hopes of creating a community center.

The inside is mainly filled with people organizing, exchanging ideas, and e-mailing and calling contacts from around the city who may be able to provide assistance for the effort. Many are coordinating for a meeting with the Catholic Archdiocese – which owns this former mental health clinic at 888 Turk Street – that is scheduled to take place this afternoon. A delegation from the Interfaith Council of San Francisco and the National Lawyers Guild are also on their way to building to help plan for the meeting.

A head count last night showed there were about 125 people here. Some have left, but many arrived this morning, leaving about 100 at this point. Various rooms in the building have been organized for different purposes including a welcome desk and information center, sleeping quarters, library, and medical clinic.

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Breaking: hundreds with OccupySF 'occupying' building

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UPDATE: Representatives of the Archdiocese have made clear that they will not make a decision regarding the building occupation until the morning 

OccupySF, along with at least 400 supporters and homeless advocacy groups, have entered a vacant ’building and plan to turn it into a community center. Participants served a free dinner, unrolled sleeping bags and tacked up posters in rooms marked “sleeping quarters” by organizers, and are currently meeting to decide next steps.Read more »