S.F. Mayor’s Plan to End Homelessness is “On track”
In 2004, Gavin Newsom became mayor of San Francisco and implemented a 10-year program to rid the city streets of the chronically homeless. Six years later, Newsom is saying the program is on track to reach its goal of housing 3,000 street people by 2014. But do the numbers add up? And is it really worth all the money?
Currently, the program has created housing units for 1,679 homeless single adults. And while it looks like the goal of housing 3,000 will be met in the next four years, that doesn’t mean the streets of San Francisco will be completely free of the homeless. This is where the numbers get a little confusing. Here are some of the figures from a story in the Mercury News:
Goal: 3,000 homeless to be placed by 2014.
Estimated number of homeless in S.F.: 6,500-15,000, including families living in cars and with other families.
Newsom claims an estimated 11,000 homeless people have been taken off the streets since he became mayor in 2004.
The numbers don’t quite seem to add up to an end to homelessness. If 15,000 is the current number living on the streets and only another 1,300 or so will be housed in the next four years, that still leaves a lot of people on the streets. So what is it all for? Those San Franciscans who aren’t homeless, aren’t exactly happy about the $188 million a year being spent on programs and medical treatment to care for the city’s sidewalk dwellers. It’s money some think could be better spent on education.
What do you think? Is Mayor Newsom’s 10-year program to end homelessness worthwhile? Or is the money being misappropriated?
Photo via SFGate