Earlier this month, the San Francisco Chronicle reported about the vandalism at Dolores Park and other recreation areas.
“It took vandals just one day to mark the new playground with graffiti, and only a few weeks more for instruments in the whimsical music garden there to be damaged, most notably with the removal of six of the 14 metal keys from the popular xylophone,” according to the Chronicle.
Supervisor Scott Wiener, whose district includes Dolores Park, is upset about it and plans to raise the issue during the Mayor’s monthly question time on Tuesday. Wiener is “baffled” because, apparently, the San Francisco Police Department and the District Attorney know who the perpetrators are, yet are reluctant to press charges.
Here is the full question, via the Board of Supervisors Agenda.
Mr. Mayor: Only a few days after the opening of the wonderful new children’s playground at Dolores Park, neighbors awoke one morning to find that it had been covered in graffiti. Since then, etchings, damaged features, and other acts of vandalism have been perpetrated against this beautiful community asset. Similarly, at Duboce Park, only days after its ribbon cutting, it too was covered in graffiti. You and I were both at these opening celebrations as they served as testaments to what can happen when neighbors, businesses, and the City family come together to make our city friendlier and more inviting to children. Sadly, the City has been unable to ensure adequate protection of these valuable assets. It is baffling to me that in many cases, the Police Department and our District Attorney know who the perpetrators are, but yet are reluctant to press charges. This is unacceptable to me. The Department of Public Works spends more than $20M annually on graffiti abatement along our streets, and the Recreation and Parks Department spends millions more. These wasted tax dollars could be used to repave our streets, hire recreation managers, and keep our landscaping beautiful and healthy. Yet, year after year, we divert these funds to repair the work inflicted by vandals. We need to send a strong message that this type of antisocial behavior will not be tolerated in San Francisco. Mr. Mayor, will you help me ensure that the Police Department arrests these perpetrators and that the District Attorney files charges against them? Will you also help ensure that we have adequate law enforcement – SFPD and Park Patrol – along our streets and in our parks? (Supervisor Wiener, District 8 )
We will update this story as we get more information.