London Breed was sworn into workplace on Wednesday as San Francisco’s first feminine African-American mayor, taking up for the late Ed Lee – and instantly going through a slew of monetary and social issues plaguing the town.
Breed, a 43-year-old Democrat and former president of the town’s board of supervisors, has been tasked with tackling a mounting homelessness disaster, a scarcity of sufficient housing as an increasing number of individuals flood into the Bay Space and a rising divide between longtime residents and the not too long ago arrived tech business.
“We’re not a story of two cities, we’re one San Francisco and as your mayor, I’ll do all the things I can to unite us and convey us collectively for the needs of doing what we have to get heading in the right direction,” Breed mentioned throughout her inauguration speech Wednesday afternoon.
The largest impediment Breed faces as mayor is combating the town’s rampant homeless drawback.
Metropolis statistics exhibits that at any given time, there are 7,500 homeless residing on the streets. The difficulty has been exacerbated by the nation’s ongoing opioid epidemic.
All through the town, homeless individuals are seen day by day taking pictures up heroin and smoking methamphetamine in broad daylight on downtown streets. In response to stories from the town’s Division of Public Works, 10,000 needles have been collected off the streets in March of 2017, in contrast with simply three,000 throughout the identical time interval the earlier yr.
The difficulty isn’t simply affecting the town’s residents; it has additionally been blamed as a significant detriment to the tourism business.
Tourism is among the many greatest industries in San Francisco – bringing in $9 billion a yr in income, using round 80,000 individuals and producing greater than $725 million in native taxes. However the quantity of homeless individuals within the metropolis, particularly in tourist-heavy areas round Union Sq. and Fisherman’s Wharf, has brought on some guests to rethink their journey plans.
“When these items depart, it impacts all of us — the taxi, the resort, the restaurant,” Resort Council of San Francisco Govt Director Kevin Carroll instructed native media after a big commerce present pulled out of the town on account of these considerations. “We should be involved.”
To fight the homeless drawback in San Francisco, Breed desires to, amongst different issues, enhance hospital and hospice take care of the homeless, open protected injection websites for drug customers, have medical groups on the streets take care of overdoses and assemble everlasting housing for the town’s homeless.
“There may be nothing compassionate or protected about relegating individuals, notably these affected by psychological well being or dependancy points, to sleep on our streets,” Breed wrote in a chunk on Medium.
The Related Press contributed to this report.