Tonight was the Annual Interfaith Memorial for our Homeless Dead. It’s always a powerful experience and a stunning reminder of how many people are needlessly suffering and dying on our streets. This year we had a list of over 180 people who died… and there are so many more people who were not on this list! There seems to be more and more people each year who are dying on our streets.
We went out on outreach this afternoon to check in with folks. Last night two residents of encampments in the Mission were shot to death. There was still blood on the sidewalk this afternoon. Folks living in the encampment were really shaken up about this.
I was out at the encampments today checking in with folks. Things down on Cesar Chavez looked pretty much the same as last week, but people reported SFPD came today and told them they are doing sweeps early tomorrow morning. The cops were threatening to arrest anyone who was still there in the morning, but they are threatened on a regular basis and never really know when sweeps will actually happen. There were no longer ‘notices to vacate’ posted. The thing that was out of the norm was that people reported Caltrain had engineers with them today scoping things out so they may be putting fences up.
See the walker in the back of the dump truck? That belongs to a senior who is a disabled veteran who is experiencing homelessness. I told the DPW worker that I know the man who owns this walker and asked if they would tag this property so he could come pick it up. They said no and ended up crushing it up in the dump truck. So wrong!
This is a picture of Br. Damien walking in a vigil for Luis Demetrio Gongora Pat, the man who was experiencing homelessness and ended up getting shot and killed by the police this morning. Behind him is a line up of police on motorcycles who followed us while we marched. Continue reading →
The Coalition on Homelessness has been receiving a lot of reports about things getting intense down on Division lately… even more since Super Bowl City has ended.
There are a few possible reasons for this, such as the media attention, the increased complaints to City Hall to get rid of the tents (and people) and also because the City has finally opened pier 80… to some degree. Now when they say “move along” they have a place they can tell them to go. Sounds like a good option… in theory. Continue reading →
Last night the storm kept waking me up… and I was sleeping inside my apartment. I kept thinking about all the folks without shelter. The City hasn’t been opening many of the El Niño emergency shelters… and when they do they haven’t been informing 311 which is the system established to inform folks about resources and shelters. It makes no sense.
Went on a rain soaked outreach shift today checking in with folks after the storm. Everyone and all of their belongings were drenched! I noticed a lot of people were barefoot or wearing soaked socks. Continue reading →