This article covers ground directly related to my recent post about McCoppin Hub.

Rather than deal with the causes of homelessness, city officials attack its victims, making their lives harder.  Nothing solves homelessness better than a home.

The article documents forced relocation at threat of arrest or the truncheon.  In typical bureaucratic style, no city official takes full responsibility for his or her action while exacerbating problems facing the dispossessed.

Eddie Stiel


The City of San Francisco has indefinitely closed the McCopppin Hub park.  Here is the latest update from the neigborhood press:

We covered the misguided effort to fence off this park in earlier posts:

Presently, a temporary construction fence has closed the park from public use.  The purposes of a construction fence are to prevent the public from entering a construction zone with dangerous conditions and to secure the construction material and tools.  However, construction has not begun, so this fence’s sole purpose is to exclude people from public space.

McCoppin Hub is one of a decreasing number of public spaces with places to sit, a restful sanctuary.  Anyone can use the benches.  Of course, they are relatively more useful for people who have no home of their own, especially because it is now illegal to sit or lie down on sidewalks in San Francisco.

“The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread.” — Anatole France, 1894.

Near McCoppin Hub, for over a year, police barricades have lined Duboce Avenue/13th Street/Division Street, something reminiscent of authoritarian countries in the developing world.  Is “liberal” San Francisco so different?

City officials will cite the funds they spend on the homeless.  Indeed, they spend many millions per year while homelessness increases.  Their approach is akin to fixing a leaky roof by buying more buckets.

Some perspective.  The best estimate on the cost to build a closed park, McCoppin Hub, is $2M.  It is certainly more than that because the park is undergoing the second remodel of its short life.  But let’s stick to $2M.  San Francisco Food Not Bombs shares food two evenings per week. A generous estimate of our out of pocket yearly expenses is $100. $2M could sustain San Francisco Food Not Bombs for 20,000 years.

Jane Kim is the elected member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors for the district containing McCoppin Hub and pushed to build a fence around this unenclosed park.  She is a member of the Democratic Party, like all elected officials and, undoubtedly, almost all commission members and department heads in San Francisco.

Local Democrat Party officials rightfully decry President Trump’s attacks on sanctuary cities and immigration.  “We build bridges not walls.”  Locally, where they have actual influence and power, they are building fences and erecting barricades to exclude the dispossessed.

Supervisor Kim’s most meaningful policy achievement is the passage for an area of her Supervisorial District, in 2011, at the behest of Mayor Ed Lee, of the Mid-Market, or Twitter, tax break, which directly subsidized tech and real estate interests.

Her actions epitomize the policies of elected officials throughout the United States:  tax breaks for corporations and the rich; fences, exclusion, truncheons and bullets for the poor.  And she is on the progressive, whatever that means, team.

Let’s march to City Hall and shout, at the top of our lungs, words made famous by a recent President, like all of them, opposed to social justice, “Mr. Lee and Ms. Kim, tear down that fence.”  Better yet, let’s tear it down ourselves.

For Amilcar Perez Lopez, Luis Gongora Pat and all others seeking a better life in cities, sanctuary or otherwise, only to have the cities’ armed guards kill them.

Eddie Stiel

We have updated the San Francisco Department of Building Inspection’s list of empty and abandoned buildings through December, 2016 on this webpage:

Sorry for the funky layout on the above linked webpage.  I’ll try to fix it on the next update scheduled for May, 2017.

If anyone wants the complete DBI database, contact us at

In the words of Emma Goldman, “Ask for work. If they don’t give you work, ask for bread. If they do not give you work or bread, then take bread.”

A unanimous 6-0 vote.

Thank you to everyone who signed the online petition, attended the hearing, wrote a letter, told a friend, or just sent good wishes.

Press coverage:

Sister Mary of the Sisters of the Fraternite Notre Dame encourages people to attend this Thursday’s Planning Commission Hearing to speak in favor of their proposed soup kitchen at 1928 Mission Street.  She estimates that the Commission will consider their proposal at around 12:30 PM.
San Francisco Planning Commission
City Hall, Room 400
Thursday, January 12, 2007
12:30 PM
Here is the item from this week’s Planning Commission agenda; staff recommends against Discretionary Review and in favor of the Soup Kitchen (
  1. 2016-011482DRP­­-02 (S. ADINA: (415) 575-8722)

1928 MISSION STREET – located on the west side of Mission Street, Lot 059 in Assessor’s

Block 3554 (District 9) – Request for Discretionary Review of Building Permit Application No. 2016.10.05.9640, proposing a change of use from a vacant retail space to a large institutional use for a non-profit organization providing on-site soup kitchen services (d.b.a. Sisters of the Fraternite Notre Dame). The Project is located within the Mission Street NCT (Neighborhood Commercial Transit) Zoning District and 80-B Height and Bulk District. This action constitutes the Approval Action for the project for purposes of CEQA, pursuant to Section 31.04(h) of the San Francisco Administrative Code.

Staff Analysis: Full Discretionary Review

Preliminary Recommendation: Do Not Take Discretionary Review and Approve



Nuns from the Fraternite Notre Dame Mary of Nazareth propose opening a soup kitchen at a vacant commercial space at 1930 Mission Street after a rent increase displaced them from their Tenderloin location.  Unfortunately, some people are opposing their work sharing free food with hungry people.

These articles provide good background:

You can help convince the City of San Francisco to approve this soup kitchen in three ways.

1)  Sign and share an online petition:

2)  Write a support letter to the San Francisco Planning Commissioners.  A sample letter with instructions follows:




Support letters can be sent as an email or as an attachment document. Please send your letter to Tom Tunny at for inclusion in the Sisters’ project application to the City.


If you are unable to email your letter, please mail a printed copy to Tom Tunny at One Bush Street, Suite 600 San Francisco, CA  94104 or hand deliver directly to Sister Marie.



The letter below is a sample version – the most effective support letters are written from a personal point-of-view of the sisters and their mission. Please use the following version as a template.







San Francisco Planning Commission

1650 Mission Street, Suite 400

San Francisco, CA 94103


Dear Planning Commissioners,


Please support the Sisters of the Fraternite Notre Dame in their efforts to relocate the Mary of Nazareth soup kitchen to 1930 Mission Street. The Sisters provide an essential safety net for some of San Francisco’s most vulnerable residents who are struggling to make ends meet or are currently living on the street.


Since 2008, the Sisters have become an integral part of the San Francisco community, serving free meals from their previous location in the Tenderloin. Due to a dramatic rise in rent, the Sisters must find a new site in order to continue doing their good work in the City.


Through the generosity of those inspired by the Sisters’ mission to serve the poor, the Sisters have secured this ideally-suited new location at 1930 Mission. As they have demonstrated over the years, the Sisters know how to create a safe, controlled environment by running an efficient operation and by creating personal relationships with the people who come to them for help.


The Sisters represent all of the values that make San Francisco a welcoming place for all people. Please support them as they strive to improve the lives of so many.





3)  Attend the Planning Commission Hearing on Thursday, January 12th beginning at 12 Noon, City Hall, Room 400 (I will post more specific information the week of the hearing).

Thank you for your help.

We always need volunteers.  Please join us to prepare and share free vegetarian food.

The Thursday sharing invites you to join us.

Show up any time after 3 PM at Station 40, 3030B 16th Street, to help prepare the meal that we share across 16th Street at the BART Plaza at 6 PM.  Clean up afterwards.

Here is the information from our current serving information page (

To volunteer:  go to Station 40, 3030B 16th Street (across from 16th and Mission BART Plaza, next to Casa Thai), Thursdays between 3:00 pm and 8:00 pm.  Pull cord on the right side of the door to ring the bell.  If no answer, call 415-341-8004.

Food Pickups: Help Needed!

Cooking: 16th and Mission (Station 40) — 3:00 pm–Help Needed!

Sharing: 16th and Mission BART Plaza — 6:00 pm–Help Needed!

Cleaning Up:  16th and Mission (Station 40)–after Sharing–6:30 pm – 8:00 pm–Help Needed!

Thank you.

We will not be sharing food at the 16th/Mission BART Plaza on Thanksgiving, Thursday, November 24, 2016.  We apologize for any inconvenience.

We will return to the 16th/Mission BART Plaza on Thursday, December 1st at 6:00 PM.

Our serving schedule is up to date:

We always need volunteers or just come eat with us at one of our sharings.

We have updated the San Francisco Department of Building Inspection’s list of empty and abandoned buildings through September, 2016 on this webpage:

If anyone wants the complete DBI database, contact us at

The San Francisco Department of Building Inspection maintains a list of empty and abandoned buildings, updated every quarter.

As a public service, we will publish this list on our website on this linked page:

This list is current through the 2nd Quarter (April, May, June), 2016.  Check back in early November, 2016 for an updated list through the 3rd Quarter, 2016.

If anyone wants the complete DBI database, contact us at

In the words of Emma Goldman, “Ask for work. If they don’t give you work, ask for bread. If they do not give you work or bread, then take bread.”


Note: Servings may cancel in the event of rain

TUES: none try curry without worry – UN Plaza @ Hyde St – 5:30PM

THURS: 16th & Mission – 6:00PM

FRI: Market & Hyde – 7:00PM

Contact Us

Join our fantastic Email List!

(415) 484-3288

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