All towns and cities in California should take a lesson from the community of Coronado, California. There are no encampments on the streets in Coronado today. There are no homeless. Those inhabitants of the prior encampments were given three options.
– Get treatment for mental health and/or addiction
Legislators have thrown billions of tax payer dollars at the problem with little results. These options in Coronado are being enforced. The streets are clear. The rest of the state can do the same. Let’s return our communities to the residents where we can live with clean safe streets.
Editor’s note: The Appeal feels it’s important to bring context to recent news reports about Coronado and its homelessness situation. According to information recently published in The San Diego Union-Tribune, in 2020, 16 people were deemed homeless in Coronado. In 2022, one homeless person was found in the one-day count.
“When authorities encounter someone who is unhoused in Coronado, they often send the person over the bridge to a shelter operated by a nonprofit in San Diego,” Michael Smolens of the Union-Tribune wrote. “(Coronado Mayor Richard) Bailey, a Republican, recently has been making the rounds on national and local conservative-leaning media outlets, including Fox News and KUSI, touting his city's progress. He says Coronado has hit on the solution to homelessness and others should follow it. He doesn't mention a key to this success is shipping people out of town, nor the relatively minor scope of the problem.”
Smolens also points out Coronado’s unique geographic location, a stark difference from the Yuba-Sutter area and most other California communities.
“Coronado is geographically isolated from the rest of the region. A lot of unsheltered people travel on foot or maybe by bicycle. Without a vehicle, it takes some doing — and money — to get to Coronado. There's the bridge — with no pedestrian or bike access — the 7-mile long Silver Strand from Imperial Beach, and the ferry that crosses the bay,” Smolens said. “It's also an exclusive enclave without much affordable housing or amenities such as free-food distribution that homeless people might seek out.”