Homeless protection bill launched

January 3, 2013

A bill designed to protect “some of society’s most vulnerable members” has been introduced by Assemblyman Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco). Ammiano calls his prospective legislation AB5 “The Homeless Person’s Bill of Rights and Fairness Act” and sets out to build protections of “basic human rights.

“We need to stop criminalizing the behavior of people who have no where else to turn,” he said in a statement accompanying his bill’s debut.

In a commentary published originally in the San Francisco Bay View, an aide to Ammiano, Carlos Alcala, wrote, “Current local laws on urban camping, sleeping, loitering and even sitting and lying down, in reality, are often attacks on the homeless, who have few safe options on where to go.”

Alcala noted, “Laws that target homeless are not much different from other laws of the past that stigmatized disabilities or poverty.”


33 Comments

  1. easymoney says:

    Bottom line is, who is paying for this and who is managing it? We are paying and public health will run it, both do not work.
    Give our tax dollars to someone like Duval or give it to an existing public agency that already has a habit of wasting money. Screening is needed but will never be allowed by the aclu.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

  2. shelworth says:

    You can only help the ones that want help, there is too large a number of these folks , usually the younger ones, that want this lifestyle. I agree that we need to make the mental health system more accessible to the ones who need it, not the ones who game the system. Imagine all that could be accomplished if we spent just half of all that money on the top 1% of kids! I’d have my damn jet pack by now!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 3

  3. SLOBIRD says:

    This County has a budget of $40 million for mental health and a population of approximately 271,000 people, that is about $6500 per person. Where the hell does this money go since the majority of the population does not use the services and who uses these services as it seems that the Mental Health Programs established in this County are ineffective. Let’s see, in San Luis Obispo County we have had several killings of our citizens by persons with knowleged mental health programs prior to the killings, we have Gifford in Arizona, Colorado theatre shooting, recent school shooting to name but a few. Everyone wants to talk guns as the problem but how about the system for mental helath. When California alone is spending $3.688 Billion alone on mental health and we continue with all these failures, the truth is, our Mental Health System is as big a failure as is our School System. Let government run it and this is what we get. AND, they want more money…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 4

    • OnTheOtherHand says:

      It is kind of a quandary because, if private prisons or health insurance companies can be used as examples, private enterprise brings its own problems like greed and corruption to public services while government brings unreasonable levels of bureaucracy and inefficiency. I think their are no simple, good solutions and probably no cheap ones either.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 4

      • rogerfreberg says:

        just a thought… greed and corruption isn’t limited to just the private sector. In the public sector, the bad guys and gals just move along or are promoted.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 5

    • kayaknut says:

      It goes to support “non-profit” groups headed by “special friends” of county supervisors

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 3

    • Citizen says:

      Our County Public Health Officer, Penny Boorstein, is the biggest “do nothing” employee of the century. While others have advocated for Laura’s Law, Penny Boorstein twiddled her thumbs. Instead of Laura’s Law, the Board of Supervisors approved funding for a “SLO the Stigma” publicity campaign. This group was decrying stigmatizing the dangerous mentally ill while the dangerous mentally ill were killing off county residents in rather sensational murder cases widely reported in the newspapers.
      calcoastnews.com/…/slo-county-board-of-supervisors-should-implement- lauras-law/. This would be a good start, but I’m afraid we have to get rid of the deadwood furniture at the top of our Public Health Services to make much progress.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  4. Myself says:

    Lets see, even when Duval was up and running he couldn’t take some of these wack jobs, they were just mental cases, so because mental health can’t/won’t do anything with these people, we the taxpayer should let them sleep in door ways panhandle on our public parks and benches and let them polute the creeks, I don’t think so. The city of SLO removed a couple benches downtown because of these panhandlers, these people don’t want to work in or with society they just want to stand or sit on corners and wait for some softie to come by and give them money.
    My thoughts are similar to Duvals, bring them in but put them to work, the ones that need help with mental issues get them help, step up the county mental health program and make those people work for their wages also. We can not build a facility and house these people for free, they should work like some of the convicts at Mens Colony do, clean creeks, trails, and other tasks that need to be done but we as a city or county can’t afford to stay on top of.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 1

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