[Photo Credit: By Christopher Michel from San Francisco, USA - Memorial Day 2020 - San Francisco Under Quarantine, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=90663904]

San Francisco Exposed for Spending Millions on Giving Alcohol to Vagrants

San Francisco spends approximately $5 million annually to provide homeless individuals with severe alcoholism vodka shots and beer containers in an effort to reduce police calls and hospital stays.

Initially implemented in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the city’s managed alcohol program encountered criticism earlier this week when Adam Nathan, chairman of the San Francisco Advisory Board for the Salvation Army, posted a thread on X in which he claimed to have discovered the facility housing the program.

Although some limited studies on the strategy have shown “some promise,” Nathan is concerned about the city’s spending on the program and the manner in which it is structured.

Nathan stated that the annual expenditure for the program is $2 million, but the Chronicle estimates that the “managed alcohol program” currently costs San Francisco approximately $5 million.

The program has expanded from 10 to 20 beds and served 55 clients, according to the city’s Department of Public Health. It is housed in a former hotel in the Tenderloin district, which is notorious for its high rates of homelessness and substance abuse.

Other city-operated harm reduction programs for substance addicts have faced criticism, including that of Democratic Mayor London Breed, who stated in February that these programs “do not reduce the harm” and in fact exacerbate the situation.

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