San Francisco Mayor London Breed proposed a plan which would require welfare recipients to undergo drug testing and engage in treatment programs.
The announcement comes as the city deals with an average of three overdose deaths a day, Breitbart News reported.
The new initiative would require those receiving County Adult Assistance Programs (CAAP) to be tested for drug use and participate in treatment programs, Fox News Digital reported.
“San Francisco is a city of compassion, but also a city that demands accountability,” Breed said in a statement. “We fund a wide range of services, and we want to help people get the care they need but under current state law, local governments lack tools to compel people into treatment. This initiative aims to create more accountability and help get people to accept the treatment and services they need.”
To combat the open air drug dealings in the Tenderloin district, California Gov. Gavin Newsom began pulling officers from the California highway patrol to make arrests, Breitbart News reported.
Since May 30, highway patrol officers have made 100 drug-related arrests, CNN reported. In one instance, a highway patrol officer arrested a drug dealer allegedly selling 33 grams of fentanyl, which had the potential to kill 16,500 people.
But many residents have failed to see the increased police presence having a significant reduction on open-air drug use.
Twenty percent of CAAP recipients from 2018 to 2020 self-disclosed that they had substance abuse issues. The new policy would end cash assistance for those who refuse to participate in treatment.
Breed’s announcement came the same day as Daniel Lurie, an heir to the Levi Strauss & Co. fortune, formally announced his run for mayor. Lurie is calling for new leadership to deal with the opioid epidemic.
“We have tremendous resources; we have everything at our disposal and yet our streets are unsafe. We need to end the era of open-air drug dealing, we need housing at all income levels, especially for middle-class families, who are the backbone of San Francisco,” Luire said.