Supervisor John Avalos to hold Monday hearing on homeless families ‘crisis’ 

Amid reports of the increasing number of homeless families living on the streets, Supervisor John Avalos has called for a hearing Monday to get a handle on what’s going on.

“I’ve been hearing for months that we have a crisis of homeless families, families that are either homeless or marginally housed, that is increasing,” Avalos said. “This is the month we should care most about how families are faring. I want to make sure that we have a full discussion about what the magnitude of the crisis and what our response should be.”

Officials from Human Services Agency, Department of Public Health and other city departments will be on hand to explain The City’s response to the increase in homelessness. The waitlist for families at The City’s homeless shelters has reached a high point of 267 families, with families waiting more than six months for shelter, according to the San Francisco Coalition on Homelessness.

“Due to the double punch of a continued economic recession and a scarcity of affordable housing, an increasing number of families are desperate to find a place to call home,” said Miguel Carrerra, of the coalition.

Those who cannot afford market rents in San Francisco rely on subsidized housing. In San Francisco, there are 37,000 people on the combined waitlist for public housing and Section 8. The waitlist for Section 8 was last opened for one month in 2001 and the waitlist for public housing closed Feb. 1, 2010, according to the coalition.

The hearing, before the board’s City Operations and Neighborhood Services Committee, begins at 10 a.m. at City Hall in Room 250 on Monday.

jsabatini@sfexaminer.com

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