Over the last year or so, tensions have been rising between the tech industry and everyday people in San Francisco.
Back in December, protestors stopped both an Apple bus and a Google bus in San Francisco that shuttle employees from the city to their respective campuses in Silicon Valley. That’s because people are upset that wealthy tech people have driven up the price of housing in San Francisco so non-tech workers can’t afford to live there.
Meanwhile, we see some tech people bashing San Francisco’s homeless population and the city itself, saying that the city has been overrun by “crazy, homeless, drug dealers, and trash…“
In San Francisco, there are 6,436 homeless people and a little over half of them live on the street. In 2011, there were 6,455, according to the San Francisco Human Services Agency.
And it turns out that nearly half (44%) are in the Tenderloin and South of Market areas, right near Twitter’s headquarters on Market Street.
In San Francisco, 63% of the homeless population have a mental illness, addiction, or a physical injury.
40% of homeless people in San Francisco were already homeless before coming to the city. Some (17%) came looking for work, and 14% said they came for social services.
While a lot of San Francisco’s homeless population is basically located right outside Twitter, the company is still reaping the benefits of its massive tax break, which cost the city about $US56 million.
Now, evictions are going up and rent prices are increasing in San Francisco.
Evictions have also led some people to set up shop elsewhere.
Also on Twitter’s street are plenty of adult film theatres and shops.
There’s also some abandoned theatres — The Strand opened as a Vaudeville theatre in 1917. Before it shut down, it served as a bingo parlor, a movie theatre, porn theatre, and more recently, a residence for squatters.
A lot of people have been wondering what the tech industry should do to help make San Francisco a great place for everyone. Well, there’s at least one startup trying to help the homeless population. HandUp launched its pilot program back in August to help homeless people receive donations via text or email. There are currently 100 people in the program, HandUp founder Rose Broome tells Business Insider. The largest single donation to date is $US700, and it went to a four-person family.
But despite any efforts by tech startups, the city still has a ban on sitting and lying on sidewalks.
And people are getting pushed off Market and into Hayes Valley, a nearby neighbourhood.