Examining the Challenges New San Francisco Mayor London Breed Faces in Combating Dirty Streets - NBC Bay Area
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Examining the Challenges New San Francisco Mayor London Breed Faces in Combating Dirty Streets

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    SF Mayor Faces Challenges in Battle Against Dirty Streets

    London Breed wasted no time jumping into action a day after being sworn in as San Francisco's 45th mayor. On Thursday, she held her first press conference meeting with public safety officials to go over disaster preparedness. Sam Brock reports.

    (Published Thursday, July 12, 2018)

    London Breed wasted no time jumping into action a day after being sworn in as San Francisco's 45th mayor. On Thursday, she held her first press conference meeting with public safety officials to go over disaster preparedness.

    The new mayor held the gathering to take a "temperature" check on whether the city is ready for a fire, earthquake or terror threat. But the crisis on the streets is what she focused on in her inauguration the day before -- and also is what people want to see addressed right away.

    You don't need to look hard to find signs of drug use and human distress in San Francisco. In less than five minutes, an NBC Bay Area crew reporting in the city encountered needles, screaming people and children walking right by all of it just blocks from City Hall.

    "We have a crisis, people are dying on our streets!" said David Chiu, former San Francisco board president and current assemblyman.

    Chiu believes Breed will have to champion new proposals to tackle long-festering problems. But it will not be easy.

    "The challenge is in our city, oftentimes, you have oppositional politics sometimes just for the sake of oppositional politics," Chiu said. "You have folks on different sides who will disagree, just to disagree."

    Breed on Thursday doubled down on certain policies that have alluded previous mayors.

    "I'm committed to safe injection sites," Breed said. "And of doing our conservatorship program in a way that effectively addresses the challenges of mental illness."

    A "conservatorship" law that would take some mentally-ill people off the streets has passed the State Senate and awaits a vote in the Assembly. But even if it gets a stamp of approval in Sacramento, individual cities still need to opt in.

    What this all boils down to -- because there are civil liberty issues involved, and it's not clear everyone on the Board of Supervisors will go along with it.

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