San Francisco’s Democratic Mayor London Breed recently made a proposal mandatory drug testing and treatment for welfare recipients.
On Tuesday, Breed unveiled a plan to address the city’s homelessness and substance abuse crises. Breed’s initiative would require those suspected of having substance abuse problems who wish to receive funding from the county Adult Assistance Program to undergo mandatory drug testing and treatment programs. Those who refuse testing and treatment are not eligible for county-funded cash assistance.
The program currently provides housed residents up to $697 per month, and homeless residents are guaranteed $105 per month and a homeless bed New York Post reported.
Accordingly KRON TVThere are about 8,000 homeless people in San Francisco, and about half refuse to take advantage of the housing offered by the city. In 2023, the Healthy Streets Operations Center in San Francisco reached out to 2,344 homeless people to offer them housing, but 45% declined.
“We need to make a significant change,” Breed said during a news conference Tuesday. “No more ‘anything goes’ without responsibility, no more alms without responsibility.”
The mayor’s initiative “aims to incentivize people with substance use disorders to get the help they need to recover.”
Intervention programs include “inpatient treatment, medical detoxification, physician-assisted treatment, outpatient options, and abstinence-based treatment, among others, based on the needs of the client,” the mayor’s office reported.
The San Francisco Human Services Agency reported that 20% of county Adult Assistance Program recipients admitted to having drug problems from 2018 to 2020.
“The incidence of substance use disorders in San Francisco’s CAAP population is significantly higher than the overall city population, particularly among our recipients experiencing homelessness,” said Trent Rhorer, executive director of the SFHSA. “This initiative aims to support our clients with substance use disorders by motivating them to get the help they need. We hope this will lead to an end to their substance abuse and homelessness.”
Breed’s proposal must be approved by the Board of Supervisors before it can be adopted. If the measure is defeated, it could be included in a ballot initiative to allow voters to decide.
“We will continue to support those who are struggling with addiction and need help. People who refuse to enroll in the treatment services we provide will no longer receive county-funded cash assistance. We are a city of compassion, but we must also take responsibility.” Breed specified On Wednesday.
Breed is running for re-election in November 2024.
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