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San Francisco pays individuals to not shoot others: ‘Money for criminals’

San Francisco is rolling out a pilot program that may pay high-risk people to not shoot anybody as gun crimes tick up within the metropolis. 

“These small investments can rework the lives of people, however they will additionally rework communities,” Sheryl Davis, govt director of the Human Rights Fee, advised Newsweek.

The Dream Keeper Fellowship pays 10 people who’re at excessive danger of being on both finish of a capturing $300 every month to not be concerned in such crimes. 


The fellowship is being rolled out by the Human Rights Fee and Workplace of Financial and Workforce Growth and is funded by means of the Dream Keeper Initiative, which is San Francisco’s program that works to redirect funding into the Black neighborhood. It’s going to launch in October. 

“It is not essentially as lower and dry as people might imagine. It is not as transactional as, ‘This is a number of {dollars} in order that you do not do one thing dangerous,’ however it actually is about the way you assist us enhance public security within the neighborhood,” Davis added.

Individuals of this system shall be paired with life coaches from the town’s Avenue Violence Intervention Program and can function “neighborhood ambassadors.” Individuals are additionally eligible to obtain a further $200 per 30 days by means of methods corresponding to, working, going to high school or being a mediator in doubtlessly violent conditions.

Funds are made within the type of present playing cards and shall be monitored, the San Francisco Examiner reported. 

“As you grow to be higher, your neighborhood advantages from that,” Davis stated.

Mayor London Breed beforehand spoke approvingly of the concept as one that might lower down on violence within the metropolis. 

“My want is to get to them, to not simply make an arrest, however to get to them and to attempt to determine if they’d be prepared to work with us on one thing that’s an alternate,” Breed stated at a Violence Prevention Summit hosted by the Human Rights Fee in August. “We are able to’t simply put them in a program with out ensuring that they’ve cash, with out ensuring that they’ve one thing to care for themselves.”

Shootings have spiked within the metropolis this 12 months, with 119 recorded gun crime victims within the first half of the 12 months, which is double the quantity throughout the identical timeframe in 2020. 

This system follows an analogous one in Richmond, California, which was dubbed “money for criminals” by the media after gun crimes elevated. A 2019 examine credited this system with serving to scale back gun homicides within the metropolis by 55%. 

Critics of this system have identified that related initiatives have not been very profitable, with the Washington Examiner’s David Freddoso saying in a Wednesday op-ed, “It was additionally tried in Sacramento, the place its promoters boast that ‘solely’ 44% of members had been subsequently arrested on new expenses — properly, so long as you do not depend about one-third of the members who dropped out or had been arrested in its first six months. (D’oh!)”

“Violent criminals want jail. They don’t want money. Individuals who shoot different individuals must be walled off in prisons and avoided the remainder of us,” he added. 


The transfer comes as California additionally works to grow to be the primary state to pay drug addicts a number of hundred {dollars} to remain sober. 

Gov. Gavin Newsom requested the federal authorities final week for permission to make use of tax {dollars} to pay for this system by means of Medicaid. In the meantime, an analogous proposal can be working by means of California’s Legislature, with the state Senate already passing the invoice. 


“I feel there’s a lot on this technique for everybody to love,” stated state Sen. Scott Wiener, a Democrat from San Francisco and creator of the invoice. “Most essential of all, it really works.”


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