California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) is utilizing officers from the California Highway Patrol (CHP) to police growing drug abuse in San Francisco. The governor’s move comes as San Francisco struggles with issues related to narcotics, homelessness and increased crime.
The decision comes as synthetic opioids such as fentanyl have flooded San Francisco’s streets. Officers have seized significant amounts of different drugs and have made almost 100 CHP arrests since May. Despite the effort, the city suffers from open-air markets and drug use.
Law enforcement officials have released a number of recent suspects in San Francisco, with only 17 of 1,000 drug dealing cases resulting in criminals being jailed prior to trial.
Drug offenses in the city are up by more than a third over last year.
Something you won’t see on you local news.
This is San Francisco. 18 DEATHS YESTERDAY!
Here is body of 24 year old kid who was housed by the Larkin Youth Services. The drugs won. pic.twitter.com/TTXICvsaF5
— I Meme Therefore I Am 🇺🇸 (@ImMeme0) September 2, 2023
The city’s drug issue is tied to San Francisco’s significant homeless population. Conservative critics have blamed city and state policies that they believe encourage the creation of homeless encampments in the city.
Despite, or perhaps because of, the city’s more than $600 million in spending on the issue of homelessness, the problem has grown significantly in recent years. Overall, California has expended more than $20 billion on the issue since 2020.
In San Francisco itself, more than half of the homeless rejected housing when it was offered to them.
“We can’t force people to accept or stay in shelters and we’re unable to prevent people from setting up an encampment in an area that was just cleaned,” said San Francisco Mayor London Breed (D). “This is the situation we are in,”
San Francisco has seen a significant increase in crime since 2020. The city has struggled to handle concerns regarding the sharp rise in property and violent crime, as well as a number of retailers leaving the city.
Nordstrom recently closed two locations in the city, joining other retailers including Verizon and Whole Foods. Shoplifting in the city has become a significant problem, especially in the form of organized retail theft.
In addition, the Bay Area city suffers from some of the highest costs of living and operating a business in the nation. The Democratic Party-dominated city has some of the highest local and state tax rates even amid the growing host of problems.