Supes crack down on homeless camps in parks

San Francisco supervisors Tuesday toughened the city's stance on homeless encampments by passing an ordinance prohibiting cooking and modifying landscapes to create shelters in city parks.

The ordinance will amend the city's park code — which already prohibited building or maintaining structures, tents or anything “that may be used for housing accommodations or camping” — to now include inhabiting such places, modifying the landscape to make a shelter, or accumulating furniture, appliances or construction debris in a park.

Additionally, cooking, except with the permission of the Recreation and Park Department or Commission, will be prohibited.

Sleeping in parks, which was already prohibited from 10 p.m. until 6 a.m., will now be forbidden between 8 p.m. and 8 a.m.

People will not be found to be in violation of the code if they do not already have an outstanding citation for the same offense, and if they agree within 30 hours to accept temporary or permanent housing, residential drug treatment, homeless outreach services, or admission to a hospital or other medical treatment facility.

The ordinance was submitted by Mayor Gavin Newsom and passed the board on an 8-3 vote.

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