Well, we suppose he has every right to crow about it -- Gavin Newsom announced to a cheering crowd of social service providers and homeless people that the number of homeless people on welfare in SF has dropped 84% this year, and there's only 319 remaining on the homeless rolls.

Of those people who left the homeless list (2,106 people), about 50% of them are now in newly created housing. In other statistics, we've sent 887 people home on the SF "free one way bus ticket to anywhere!" program (42% of the 2,106 people who left the homeless list), we've built 1,855 new housing units for the homeless and are projected to build another 632 by next April, and Newsom wants to build a 75-bed medical respite center to help people recover from physical illness, mental illness, or substance abuse. Also, Care Not Cash has been renamed "Housing First."

Newsom did note that there's still some problems -- namely, that the $59 monthly stipend is too little to live on, but he hastened to add that the city's now providing free mental health services and food stamps to make up for it. The only critic quoted by the Chron noted that Care Not Cash Housing First was "robbing Peter to pay Paul" by helping homeless individuals at the expense of homeless families, but that point wasn't really followed up on in the article. The only critic quoted by the Examiner noted that police brutality towards homeless people has increased and more people are being cited for "camping." Are there any other issues on the con- side that aren't being covered?

Picture (from 2003, we think) from the CareNotCash.com website