Despite US Supreme Court Review of Grants Pass Case, San Francisco Homelessness Case Should Proceed

Photo by Fredrick Lee on Unsplash

Special to the Vanguard

San Francisco, CA – San Francisco’s City Attorney filed a motion for a stay, or pause, in Coalition on Homelessness v. City of San Francisco. The case is currently pending in federal district court.

Coalition on Homelessness v. City of San Francisco challenges San Francisco’s costly and ineffective response to homelessness. The Ninth Circuit recently affirmed a preliminary injunction issued in that case.

Although one of thirteen claims directly builds on the findings in Grants Pass, the San Francisco case also deals with separate issues affecting the unhoused community. These include the City’s destruction of property and ignoring due process rights, the City’s failure to make reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities, whether the City discriminates against people with disabilities, and whether sweeps unlawfully endanger people’s lives. The City’s practices are against federal law, state law, and its own policies.

“Even with the Supreme Court’s review of Grants Pass underway, the case in San Francisco  should proceed,” said Nisha Kashyap, Senior Staff Attorney with the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area and one of the attorneys representing the Coalition on Homelessness in the case. “Unhoused people should not continue to be subject to these unlawful practices, and the entire community deserves a timely resolution to all the important issues at stake in the case.”

Plaintiffs in the Coalition case plan to file an opposing brief with the district court later this month in response to the brief filed by the City today.

“The Supreme Court can and should affirm that the government can’t jail you based on your status, who you are, or a condition you have. The case can proceed and take into account any future Supreme Court ruling,” added John Do, senior staff attorney with the ACLU of Northern California. “The majority of our case is unrelated to whether City’s practices are cruel and unusual punishment under the Eighth Amendment and must be resolved.”

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