The vast majority of San Francisco residents believe it is a “high priority” to increase the number of law enforcement officers in high-crime neighborhoods, while nearly half of them already plan to leave the city due to insecurity. This is according to a new study published by the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce.
The results of the study also indicate that 8 out of 10 residents say that crime in the city has been steadily increasing in recent years and that 90% believe that the homelessness crisis is deepening over time, so 76% consider it a priority to increase police presence in high-crime neighborhoods.
The survey, which included a sample of 500 residents, also showed that 40% of those consulted are considering moving to other states in the face of the rampant increase in insecurity, and an overwhelming 70% consider the deterioration of the quality of life to be evident.
“Considered in light of the pandemic, these opinions are not surprising,” the entity wrote in its publication. “However, what stands out in the survey results is the surprisingly high and consistent number of respondents who now see homelessness and crime as the top problems facing the city.”
As part of the most important solutions, 60% of respondents consider it a “high priority” to fund classes at the Police Academy, as well as recruit younger personnel to replace retiring officers.
San Francisco Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Rodney Fong said the crisis the city has experienced over the past year “highlighted and exacerbated issues such as homelessness, street conditions and safety concerns.” He added that “public infrastructure and the ability to manage street conditions were also stretched to the limit.”
According to the San Francisco Police Central Station newsletter, the rate of common theft increased by 70% in May 2021 over the same period last year, just as auto theft increased by an overwhelming 106.22% during that time.
The head of the Department, Bill Scott, told CNN that the two main reasons are the increase of criminals on the streets and insufficient law enforcement presence.