The day I met Sonia Mejía she was sweeping the sidewalk around her tent. Sonia was born in San Francisco, but Sonia and her mother soon moved to Los Angeles. She told me that they are descended from Russian Jews who immigrated to Nicaragua.
Sonia lives with her boyfriend in a tent across Shotwell street from a new high-rise that is under construction. The high-rise will have affordable housing, but she has no confidence that it will be for people like her. In the year Sonia has lived on the street, the cold and the rain have presented the greatest challenges.

Sonia Mejia Photo b Joseph Johnson