Jane Kim Chooses Tents Over Housing

Kim votes against $50 million in annual funding for housing for homeless people, while at the same time insisting people have a right to live in tents on the street

San Francisco, CA - (July 20, 2016) Supervisor Jane Kim voted on Tuesday to oppose $50 million in annual funding - $1 billion over 20 years - that will create permanent housing for homeless people, as well as build additional navigation centers to get people off the streets and into services. Kim cast this vote while also taking the position that living in tents on public sidewalks should be legal. Kim has a long record opposing efforts to reduce tents on our streets.

"Protecting the right to pitch tents on public sidewalks is more important to Jane Kim than ensuring sustainable funding for new housing and navigation centers that would actually move the homeless off the street and into safe, permanent housing,” said Maggie Muir, campaign consultant to Supervisor Scott Wiener.

Kim supports the right to pitch a tent on any public sidewalk, park or plaza. She criticized the city for removing the massive tent encampment on Division Street and supports state legislation that would wipe away San Francisco's local laws against camping on sidewalks and other public spaces.

Kim also has stated that San Francisco and California are in a state of emergency around homelessness. Yet, despite claiming we are in an emergency, Kim opposed this $50 million in annual funding for permanent housing for the homeless, while continuing to support legalizing the tent encampments.

“Jane Kim voted to sacrifice significant and critical funding for housing homeless people, while she continues to protect the right of people to pitch a tent in any public space. Kim talks out of both sides of her mouth. You can't say we have a homelessness emergency and then insist that the right to live in a sidewalk tent is more important than creating stable, safe housing," stated Muir.

The funding Kim opposed was a sales tax, a portion of which (a quarter cent or $50 million annually) would be dedicated to building permanent, supportive housing for homeless people and expanding the city's network of navigation centers to get encampments off the streets and into housing. The funding will be administered by the new Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing. Without this funding, this new department - which consolidates homeless programs to deliver them in a more efficient and coordinated manner - will struggle to achieve its mandate to transition homeless people off the streets and into housing.

Kim recently sponsored and promoted legislation stating that we are in a "state of emergency" around homelessness. Kim even released a video and toothless petition asking for a statewide state of emergency. She followed these pronouncements by voting against this critical funding measure to actually get homeless people off the streets and into housing.


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