San Francisco's controversial sit-lie ordinance, which passed in November by a narrow margin, has accomplished what many predicted: nothing. The law, making it verboten to sit or lie on public sidewalks between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m., was favored strongly by local business owners and some residents in the Haight-Ashbury. They claimed they were being harassed by scrappy street urchins who loitered on nearby sidewalks.
After months of training, officers began enforcing the law in March, but at a bimonthly CompStat meeting involving some of the Police Department’s top brass Wednesday, police Lt. Belinda Kerr from the Park Station acknowledged that the law has not done much to change behavior in the area.
There has been “a prolific amount of arrests, citations and warnings but I haven’t seen that it’s done a whole lot,” Kerr said.
She said the transients will often get up when they see officers drive by in their patrol cars, but “unfortunately are getting up and going around the block and then sitting down again.”
Sit-lie was slammed by homeless advocates who saw the ordinance as "a loss of civil liberties and an attack on all homeless people."