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Thursday, February 11, 2016

Sex Offender Clinic Won't Move Into Duboce Triangle After Neighborhood Protests

Posted By on Thu, Feb 11, 2016 at 12:05 PM

click to enlarge clinic.jpg

The people of Duboce Triangle have spoken, and their NIMBY message is loud and clear: No sex offenders allowed!

Sharper Future, a clinic that provides outpatient treatment to sex offenders, had planned to move into 100 Church St. (which formerly housed an Out of the Closet). But after a heated community meeting on Monday — so heated, in fact, that Supervisor Scott Wiener briefly halted proceedings — Sharper Future has announced it won’t relocated to Church Street after all. 

As SFist reports, the clinic released a statement last night announcing that it’s “clear our presence would be divisive for everyone concerned. Out of respect for the community and the very critical work that we do, we’ve elected to seek an alternative location.”

Sharper Future is currently at 1540 Market St. in Civic Center, but began hunting for new digs after outgrowing that location.

Dr. Tom Tobin, one of the clinic’s founders, told Hoodline that Sharper Future serves “low- to medium-risk” offenders who have only a 1 to 2 percent chance of recidivism in a three-year period. Tobin called his clients “the most monitored” people in San Francisco, noting that the majority wear ankle bracelets or are under house arrest.

Per Hoodline, the clinic completed the city’s formal planning process, including a meeting with Supervisor Wiener’s aide in November, and entered a lease agreement on Jan. 12. It was only when Sharper Future began community outreach that the backlash started in earnest, leading to Supervisor Wiener pausing the move and scheduling a community hearing.

The clinic would breach its contracts if it ceased operations for any period, so finding a suitable alternative location is imperative. But if Duboce is any indication, few neighborhoods in the city would welcome a sex offender treatment center. (Just look at the comments online for a taste of the outrage.)

Unless something pans out fast, Sharper Future may not live up to its name.

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Jeremy Lybarger


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