San Francisco’s Public Library Now Offers Social Services To HomelessMay 25th, 2010
by Doug Huggala
A little over a year ago, I wrote a blog post on San Francisco’s budget cuts creating make shift drop-in centers for the homeless. General Hospital’s waiting room becomes a warm and dry place to be with a television to watch, the 24 hour Safway at Church and Marked provides a bathroom and a place to be, and the San Francisco Main Library subsititues for a quiet place to nap for those unable to obtain a shelter bed the night before.
Over the past year San Francisco’s main library branch, located at Civic Center Plaza, has employed a social worker to talk directly to patrons in order to link them with social services.
“What we found out is that a lot of the homeless people who come here, they come to get away from being homeless and we found that a lot of folks we spoke with didn’t really want to engage with an outreach worker at that point,” Dr. Raj Parekh, a psychiatrist without the city’s health department, told KTVU2 News yesterday.
The need for such services is not just limited to San Francisco. Libraries in major cities across the country have called San Francisco in hopes creating their own similar programs.