San Francisco — Reverend Amos Brown, a longtime ally and ardent supporter of Mayor London Breed, announced on September 8 that he will be leading a controversial organization, “San Francisco that Works for Everyone.” The new group recently made headlines after it ran ads on Facebook opposing unhoused people’s use of tents at Golden Gate Park. There appears to be little evidence of tent encampments in that area.
In a statement, Brown characterized his decision to join the controversial group as a way to make San Francisco work for “every single resident.” According to Brown, the organization’s purpose was to “fight to ensure our city is stepping up like never before to address homelessness, create middle-class jobs, [and] find better ways to create affordable housing.” The statement did not address the organization’s anti-tent campaign or provide any details about its plans to address the various issues.
Given Reverend Brown’s deep ties to Mayor Breed, it remains unclear how Brown’s new organization will challenge the mayor’s approach to homelessness. When the Board of Supervisors unanimously voted to move high-risk unhoused people into hotels at the outset of the pandemic, the Mayor refused to implement the ordinance. In May 2020, documents showed that Mayor Breed personally messaged San Francisco Police Department Chief William Scott in order to request that SFPD remove unhoused people from various sidewalks around the city. Mayor Breed denied accusations that San Francisco conducts sweeps in a New Yorker article on the same day. Finally, the Mayor’s proposed budget failed to fund Mental Health SF, which would provide long term mental healthcare for many San Franciscans, including those who are unhoused.