San Francisco’s more than 8,000 unhoused people may have a newly sanctioned place to sleep soon: public parks.
In what the San Francisco Board of Supervisors publicly called a “compromise,” the Recreation and Parks Department agreed on Monday to make a list of parks by June 2 where the city could arrange “safe sleeping sites,” sanctioned tent encampments where services would be provided to unhoused people who are allowed to camp there, in a socially distant fashion.
Homeless advocates have for years publicly described Recreation and Parks Department Manager Phil Ginsburg as strongly opposed to allowing homeless people to stay in parks.
In response, Supervisor Sandra Lee Fewer, who represents San Francisco’s Richmond District, authored legislation to compel Recreation and Parks to develop a list of safe sleeping sites. But after reaching a compromise with Ginsburg, she agreed to withdraw the legislation during the Board of Supervisors Land Use and Transportation Committee hearing on Monday.
In addition to those park sites, San Francisco’s Real Estate Department will develop a list of “underutilized” city-owned sites where safe sleeping sites could be established.