Friday, November 01, 2013

Eviction Epidemic Burns On, Campos Fiddles With Airport's Name

(Campos, center, kicked off his bid for the assembly at the 24th Street BART Station Plaza in August. Courtesy photo.)

(Too bad he didn't launch his bid at the 16th Street BART Station Plaza and present his plan for assisting the homeless who congregate there. The other plaza is so much better for an ambitious politician to stage a photo-op. Credit: Liz Hafalia, SF Chronicle.)

Too many of the Mission District's low and moderate income residents have been evicted from their apartments or face displacement from rampant displacement and rabid greed by developers. Funky cool businesses are also being driven out of the neighborhood, to the point there was a recent protest march for them and residents trying to hold on to their small piece of San Francisco.

In January 2011, Seth Hemmelgarn of the Bay Area Reporter noted what was (not) happening with a small, only 24-beds, shelter for queer homeless in the Mission that had first been pushed by advocates in March 2010:

Plans to open a homeless shelter space in San Francisco designed specifically to be welcoming to LGBTs are in the works, but it's unclear when the site will be ready. Out Supervisor David Campos appeared to jump the gun a bit in a December newsletter when he said, "We helped create the first LGBT friendly homeless shelter in San Francisco."

This past August, Hemmelgarn provided an update:

In July, Dolores Street Executive Director Wendy Phillips said, “Providing everything goes well with the permits,” construction could start in September or October. The goal is to open the space by January.

The possible opening of the shelter might be in January 2014, nearly four years after it was first proposed and promoted to help homeless homos. I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for that January opening, but we'll see what happens in two months.

If Campos has a plan to deal with the residential and community businesses displacements, end the evictions, build affordable housing in the Mission and finally get the small shelter up and running, please share it with me.

Meanwhile, his misguided and wasteful effort to rename a section of San Francisco International Airport after Harvey Milk, as if there isn't enough memorializing of that hero in the City, which is the big-ticket proposal from Campos this year that has garnered the most media attention and sucked up activist oxygen and energy, was on the agenda at City Hall yesterday.

Again, Hemmelgarn of the BAR reports [oops, the piece was written by Matthew Bajko], emphasis added:

Only two of the quartet of applicants for supervisor-picked seats on an advisory body tasked with selecting a terminal at San Francisco International Airport to name after slain gay rights leader Harvey Milk moved one step closer toward being approved by the Board of Supervisors. The board’s rules committee voted to send the names of a gay Latino and a straight woman with strong ties to the city’s LGBT community on to the full board during its meeting this afternoon (Thursday, October 31) [...]

Gay District 9 Supervisor David Campos acknowledged that his office had delayed bringing the matter before the rules committee for several months as it had proven difficult finding people willing to serve on the naming body.

“It has been a challenge because, I think, a lot of things are happening in the city right now,” said Campos. “The reason we decided to move this item forward is at some point the work has to begin.”

Earth to David Campos, are you there? You can't get a 24-bed shelter, one with tons of community support and a proven desperate need for it, operational in four years and all the other basic needs problems worrying thousands of your constituents are not a top concern at City Hall, and you're still farting around with a name change for an airport terminal.

Just think of how he'll (not) serve our needs if he's elected to the state assembly next year.

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