Alyssa Guzman, Daily Mail, December 17, 2021
The mayor of San Francisco declared a state of emergency on Friday in Tenderloin, an effort to bring down overdose deaths and violent crime in one of the city’s poorest and most drug-infested neighborhoods.
Mayor London Breed, 47, said at a press conference that the city was in ‘crisis’ and that the streets were ‘nasty’ as more crime and drug overdoses littered the streets.
‘We are in a crisis and we need to respond accordingly,’ she said on Friday. ‘Too many people are dying in this city, too many people are sprawled on our streets.’
‘We have to meet people where they are.’
Breed said that rapid drug intervention is needed because about two people a day are dying of overdoses, mostly from fentanyl, in the Tenderloin and the city’s South of Market neighborhood.
The move came after she on Tuesday performed a dramatic U-turn on the ‘defund the police’ strategy as she called for ‘more aggressive policing’ to replace ‘bulls**t progressive policies’ and said she would ask for more money to be given to the police to stamp out drug dealing, car break-ins and theft.
The next day, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi slammed the city’s brazen criminals saying the ‘attitude of lawlessness’ was ‘absolutely outrageous.’
The emergency declaration will allow the city to cut through red tape that delays the public response to deteriorating conditions in the Tenderloin and quickly provide shelter, counseling and medical care to people suffering from addiction, Breed and other city officials said.
There will also be more coordinated enforcement of illegal activities, street cleanups and other infrastructure improvements to make the neighborhood safer, they said.
Black Lives Matter protestors demanded cities defund the police last year, Mayor Breed announced San Francisco would be one of the first to do so and sliced $120million from the budgets of its police and sheriff’s department.
Breed’s announcement came a few days after she pledged to crack down on open drug use, brazen home break-ins and other criminal behavior that she says have made a mockery of the city’s famed tolerance and compassion.
In an emergency police intervention on Tuesday, she announced she was asking the city’s Board of Supervisors for more money to be given to the police to stamp out drug dealing, car break-ins and theft.
‘It’s time the reign of criminals who are destroying our city, it is time for it to come to an end,’ she said. ‘And it comes to an end when we take the steps to be more aggressive with law enforcement, more aggressive with the changes in our policies.’
In Tenderloin alone last month, there were six shootings, 20 drug arrests and 16 assault and batteries, according to a CBS local station.
Across the entire city last month, there were 3,375 reports of larceny-theft, the majority being car break-ins, with SFPD’s Central District seeing the most car smash-and-grabs, recording 876 last month.
Meanwhile, there was a terrifying 15 percent increase in homicide across the city compared to last year, with 53 cases recorded so far this year alone, compared with 46 the year before.
Assault in the city also increased by more than 9 percent from 2,075 last year to 2,2271 cases this year, while overall crimes shot up by 10.2 percent.
Larceny theft also saw a massive 18.3 percent increase from 24,474 to 28,947, according to crime statistics released by the San Francisco Police Department.
Property crimes across the same four cities soared by seven percent between 2020 and 2021, reaching a total of 25,000 in October.
Critics said Breed was backing down on a promise made last year to cut police funding amid a national reckoning of police and systemic racism.