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September 21, 2022 | Press Release

In Case You Missed It: SF Chronicle: “Prop. 27 would rake in millions for homelessness. So why don’t homeless advocates support it?”

In Case You Missed It:

SF Chronicle: “Prop. 27 would rake in millions for homelessness. So why don’t homeless advocates support it?”

Prop 27 fails to garner support from CA’s homeless and housing community despite lofty promises

For Immediate Release: September 21, 2022
Contact: Kathy Fairbanks, (916) 813-1010
kfairbanks@bcfpublicaffairs.com

Sacramento, CA – Earlier this week, a story in the San Francisco Chronicle highlighted the lack of support Proposition 27 has received from California’s homeless advocacy groups, despite the fact that its out-of-state sponsors are promising hundreds of millions to “solve” the homelessness crisis.

From the story: “I don’t think there’s anybody in homeless services that actually thinks that we would realize a windfall from this, that we can instantly start building housing units and getting people off the street and getting them into mental health service,’ said [Fran] Butler-Cohen, whose organization serves 27,000 homeless people annually. ‘I don’t think anybody thinks that.’”

Several homeless service providers interviewed in the article were skeptical about the veracity of Yes on 27’s claims. 

“If these corporations wanted to be helping homeless people and mentally ill people, they could use their foundations, which they all frickin’ have,” said [Paul] Boden, executive director of the Western Regional Advocacy Project, which opposes Prop. 27.

The lack of buy-in and dwindling enthusiasm shouldn’t come as a surprise. Prop 27 would legalize online and mobile sports gambling across California – sending 90% of profits out-of-state and into the pockets of online gambling corporations, leaving pennies for the homeless. A recent Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) survey of likely voters showed Prop 27 trailing by a 20-point margin.

The NO on Prop 27 coalition released a new ad featuring advocate for the homeless Kendra Lewis, who states that Prop 27 would result in “more addiction, more financial ruin and more homelessness.”

Background:

Prop 27, sponsored and entirely funded by out-of-state online gambling corporations like DraftKings, FanDuel and Bet MGM, would legalize the largest expansion of online and mobile sports gambling in the history of the country – turning virtually every cell phone, laptop and tablet into a gambling device. Prop 27 would multiply the risks of addiction and problem gambling among California’s most vulnerable. In fact, research from the Journal of Gambling Studies found that “online gambling is more addictive than any other type of game.”

Proponents of Prop 27 are deceptively marketing their measure as a “solution” to homelessness, but under their measure, 90% of profits go to the out-of-state corporations—leaving pennies for homelessness. That’s why Prop 27 is opposed by a broad coalition of more than 50 California Indian tribes, as well as civil rights, public safety, labor, business, faith leaders, local governments, advocates for the homeless and mental health advocates.