‘A moving homeless shelter’: SamTrans buses dropping off homeless near Embarcadero


SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — “Our public transit system has become a moving homeless shelter.”

Supervisor Aaron Peskin held meetings Wednesday to look for solutions to  the reported problem of homeless people disembarking at the Sam Trans stop at Clay and Drumm streets overnight.

“This is the story of homelessness,” Peskin said. “People getting moved along rather than having real solutions of rehabilitating folks and giving them meaningful lives.”

The San Mateo County based bus line said this is the last stop for some of the lines coming back from SFO — and it’s where all riders need to get off, homeless or not.

“What we understand is SFO employees have been providing Sam Trans tokens to homeless people who have ended up at SFO after riding BART,” Dan Lieberman said. “And they’ve been getting onto some of our late night buses and heading back to San Francisco.”

The spokesperson for SFO said police officers and airport managers screen passengers getting off the last BART train to pull into the airport stop at 1 a.m.

Those without plane tickets or jobs to report to at the airport, aren’t allowed in. Of the 20 to 25 homeless they encounter, roughly 15 accept a Sam Trans token — the only bus running at that hour. 

He said they are looking for long term solutions to the problem and that a San Mateo based homeless advocacy group has been starting to try and work with some of these riders. But as most appear to be from San Francisco, they are hopeful they can get a homeless outreach team in from the city as well.

Supervisor Peskin agrees it’s time to come up with regional solutions to homelessness and not play a game of musical chairs with human beings.

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