Mayor London Breed announced today that the citywide 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew will end Thursday morning.
“Following Saturday night, it was important for the safety of our residents to ensure that we could prevent the violence and vandalism that had taken place,” the mayor tweeted, “but we know that the overwhelming majority of people out protesting are doing so peacefully and we trust that will continue.”
Supervisor Dean Preston said he learned of the mayor’s decision to lift the curfew she imposed on May 31 from her tweet.
“I am pleased,” he said. “I have not seen an order, but just from her tweet, I think that is welcome news and I am glad to hear it.”
Yesterday, the Board of Supervisors took up the matter but failed to reach the unanimous vote that would have been required to either curtail the curfew or extend it past Saturday. The issue was then tabled until a special meeting set for Thursday.
“I am glad the system of checks and balances was working,” Supervisor Aaron Peskin said. “I think that had the emergency order not been written in a rushed way, it would have been for a day or two, and could’ve been extended. But the open-ended nature of the emergency order was deeply troubling, I think, to almost every member of the Board of Supervisors.”
Board President Norman Yee said he was informed by a mayoral staffer of Breed’s decision moments before her tweet. He said no explanation was offered for the timing of the mayor’s decision and Mission Local’s calls to the mayor’s office have not yet been returned.
Yee and other supervisors are not certain if yesterday’s at-times fraught meeting was at all a factor in the mayor’s thinking. “But it was a good discussion to have,” he said.
During yesterday’s meeting, SFPD Chief Bill Scott passionately defended the curfew, and referred to it as a vital tool for proactive policing. Not 24 hours later, the mayor has moved to undo it.
Twenty-seven demonstrators were arrested at the Hall of Justice Tuesday night for protesting the curfew, after marching there from City Hall and staging a sit-in, said Hope Williams, a community organizer with San Francisco’s Democratic Socialists of America.
Police officials were not immediately able to confirm the number of people arrested Tuesday night.
“I didn’t necessarily appreciate the government telling me when I can protest and when I cannot,” said Williams, who was one of the two dozen-plus arrestees. “As a queer black woman living in San Francisco, that’s just oppressive.”
Williams said she hadn’t decided yet if she would be protesting again tonight, the last night the curfew is slated to be in effect in San Francisco. “We’re having some general discussions about what we should do tonight. I know we are looking at Oakland right now, and hoping to join forces,” she said.
Jessica Jin was also arrested last night. She learned of the protest from DSA postings on social media and walked to City Hall from her home in the Tenderloin. Along with the other arrestees, she was driven via van from the Hall of Justice to a shed at Pier 50 for processing. During that time, she says, a police officer spoke with her in an overly “friendly and jokey” way and bragged about earning $192 an hour that night.
Welp, attended my first unofficial @DSA_SF meeting in the back of a cop van tonight ?
One cop trying to flirt with me while holding me for processing bragged that he was getting paid $192/hr to be there. https://t.co/g1Hcpca3ZG
— jessica jin (@jessicajin_) June 3, 2020
“The impression was it was not a serious matter for these cops, enforcing an extremely silly curfew,” she said. “They knew we were harmless but expended so many resources on making a big show of enforcing curfew.”
Shanti Singh, a member of DSA SF who was also arrested last night, estimated that there were approximately 150 officers at the Hall of Justice. Like Jin, she was processed at Pier 50.
“I didn’t know they had a facility there,” Singh said. “There’s a giant parking lot, and behind it on the waterfront, it looked like it was a shipping warehouse. … Inside, it looked like they had made a makeshift processing station” inside a vast, single room broken up by temporary partitions.
The police declined to comment on the location.
“The mass arrests are being processed at different secure locations for the safety of everyone involved. We are not confirming these locations for security purposes,” said Officer Robert Rueca, an SFPD spokesman.
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