The San Francisco Chronicle reports that although San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors has voted unanimously to fund relief efforts for the 200-250 immigrant children who are entering the city every month, Mayor Ed Lee nixed a huge shelter for the children proposed by the federal Health and Human Services Department, citing a lack of space.
Lee is in favor of some funding for the immigrants–that which dovetails with the supervisors’ plans to offer mental health services, as well as housing and legal representation. He wants to offer the city’s services and translate them into various languages, including Spanish, Mayan, and other Central American languages.
San Francisco has been a sanctuary city for 25 years. The city’s officials have their own connections with immigration, according to the Chronicle. Lee’s father came from China and raised his family in public housing. Supervisor Norman Yee’s father came to the U.S. illegally. Supervisor David Campos himself was an illegal immigrant. Campos crossed the border with his mother and his two sisters, then three and five years old. Campos recalled, “It was hard for me with a parent. It’s hard for me to imagine it. Many of them are much younger than I was.”
Campos said, “It’s important for San Francisco to have a say in this debate. It’s a voice of reason and a voice of compassion.”