District Attorney Brooke Jenkins Faces Backlash For Comments Against Homeless People

by Gee NY

San Francisco District Attorney Brooke Jenkins is under fire for comments suggesting that homeless individuals “have to be made to be uncomfortable.”

The controversial remarks were made during a public forum, sparking criticism from advocates and the community.

During the “Take Action: San Francisco” forum on Dec. 4, Jenkins responded to a question about legal actions regarding unsheltered individuals by stating:

“They have to be made to be uncomfortable is the truth of the matter.”

The comments have since ignited a heated debate on the city’s approach to homelessness.

Jenkins initially acknowledged that addressing homelessness is beyond the criminal justice system but later emphasized the need to make living on the streets uncomfortable to encourage acceptance of shelter offers.

This viewpoint aligns with the ongoing debate in San Francisco about when and how officials should clear encampments.

Homeless advocates argue that such sweeps are cruel and counterproductive, exacerbating the challenges faced by unsheltered individuals.

Mayor London Breed and Governor Gavin Newsom, on the other hand, contend that allowing individuals, some struggling with untreated mental illnesses or substance abuse, to live in squalor is not a viable option.

City data indicates that a significant number of unsheltered individuals decline offers of shelter. In November, 60% of those engaged by street outreach workers refused assistance. Advocates argue that shelters are often not viable long-term options due to living conditions and strict rules.

Jenkins’ remarks have drawn widespread criticism on social media, with many questioning the assertion that homelessness can be comfortable.

Critics argue that the focus should be on addressing the root causes of homelessness, such as lack of affordable housing and mental health services.

The city’s policy involves providing a 72-hour notice before an encampment cleaning, but ongoing legal challenges have limited the city’s ability to clear encampments. Recent encampment sweeps have resumed following new guidance from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

Jenkins’ comments have prompted discussions about the city’s overall strategy to address homelessness.

Advocates emphasize the importance of building trust with unhoused individuals and providing thoughtful engagement rather than resorting to forced relocations.

Related Posts

Crown App