The Human Rights Workgroup envisions a San Francisco that recognizes that universal human rights must extend to poor and homeless people, and where dignity, respect, compassion, and equality are the standard of the community and the policy of the city.
In the midst of the housing crisis, poor people are getting hit from both sides: Many are becoming homeless, and those who are homeless are facing unprecedented criminalization efforts. Thousands are on the streets in San Francisco, shelters are overflowing, and prosecution of homeless people is getting fiercer.
Currently, the SFPD is displacing homeless people at 4:30 a.m. five out of seven mornings, the Department of Public Works is regularly spraying down their sleeping areas with high powered hoses, and police are giving massive numbers of citations to homeless people. It is common for homeless people to receive as many as three $100 citations in a day for sitting, smoking, or sleeping. Anti-homeless measures—such as the recent nighttime park and plaza closure during the night or the large vehicle parking ban—are raising the discourse of hatred, and causing increased acts of disrespect and violence. Several recycling centers have been closed due to complaints of the very presence of poor people in now upscale neighborhoods; still more are slated for closure.
The Human Rights Workgroup has been doing some serious heavy lifting on these issues: conducting direct research, outreach to people on the streets, running multiple campaigns, developing policy, staging direct actions, capturing media attention, and so much more.
Human Rights meets every Wednesday at 12:30 p.m at 280 Turk Street, San Francisco, CA 94102.
(415) 346-3740 x 312