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As Neighbors Decry Spread of Homeless Encampments, One Mission Resident Opens Her Home Instead

Potrero Hill and Mission District residents complain about nearby homeless encampments, which have grown in sheltered areas as winter approaches. Police and city officials say the problem is too big to solve. One resident took matters into her own hands. Part of a special report on homelessness and mental health in San Francisco in the fall 2014 print edition.

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Thoughts on Homelessness From San Francisco Civic Leaders

Part of a special report on homelessness and mental health in San Francisco, in the fall 2014 print edition. Stories rolling out online throughout the fall.
San Francisco has struggled for more than 10 years to solve the problem of chronicl homelessness. While the current consensus endorses the principle of “housing first” — stabilizing people by getting them off the streets and into basic housing — there is little agreement about the optimal policies to pursue. We asked eight civic leaders for their ideas about how to improve the living situations of the thousands of people currently living on the streets and in shelters.

Schizophrenia Diagnosis Puts People First in Line for Benefits

Homeless people with schizophrenia face abnormally high hurdles to obtaining their Supplemental Security Income benefits. But one government program has sliced their wait times to mere days, rather than months. Part of a special report on homelessness and mental health in San Francisco, in the fall 2014 print edition. Stories rolling out online throughout the fall.

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How Homelessness Can Compromise Mental Health

Studies show insecure housing can aggravate existing psychological problems, or even create new ones. Obtaining housing has been shown to improve mental health. Part of a special report on homelessness and mental health in San Francisco, in the fall 2014 print edition. Stories rolling out online throughout the fall.

S.F. Alternative Court Provides Lifeline

For Kim Knoble, the city’s behavioral health court kept her out of jail and helped her recover from a debilitating disorder. Part of a special report on homelessness and mental health in San Francisco, in the fall 2014 print edition. Stories rolling out online throughout the fall.

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Sentencing Reform Side Benefit: Behavioral Health Court Expansion

A state law approved by voters on Election Day will reduce tough sentences for some felonies. But it could also provide a financial windfall to local community courts, which divert people with mental illness out of the criminal justice system. Part of a special report on homelessness and mental health in San Francisco, in the fall 2014 print edition. Stories rolling out online throughout the fall.

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How San Francisco Places Homeless Into Supportive Housing

INFOGRAPHIC: Two city departments run similar programs focused on getting people off the streets and into housing. Audits of San Francisco’s homelessness programs say that the demand for permanent supportive housing far outstrips supply. More than 7,000 people are homeless today; only a few hundred spaces in housing become available each year. Part of a special report on homelessness and mental health in San Francisco, in the fall 2014 print edition. Stories rolling out online throughout the fall.

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Promise of Supportive Housing for Homeless Faces Reality of Short Supply

10 years ago, San Francisco’s politicians pledged to end chronic homelessness, getting the neediest people off the street through a “housing first” policy. Today that outcome is nowhere in sight. Few people are lucky enough to leave the streets through the city’s subsidized housing placement system, where some wait perpetually to receive a home. Part of a special report on homelessness and mental health in San Francisco, in the fall 2014 print edition. Stories rolling out online throughout the fall.