Leave it to San Francisco to come up with the perfect fodder for an evening segment on Fox News. Faced with rising crime rates that city leaders have done their darndest to deny, San Francisco has decided to start paying criminals to stop shooting people in the streets.
It’s called the Dream Keeper Fellowship, which is the perfect name if your dream is to not be shot on 6th and Mission. High-risk individuals will get a base income of $300 a month to stay out of trouble. They can earn up to $200 more per month by landing a job interview, complying with probation, or working with a mentor. Life coaches will be provided by the Street Violence Intervention Program (SVIP).
The pilot program starts next month with an initial 10 participants. The launch will be handled by San Francisco’s Human Rights Commission and Office of Economic and Workforce Development.
City leaders know they’ll catch flack for the idea, but they’re confident in its potential. It’s modeled after Richmond’s Operation Peacemaker Fellowship, which offers up to $1,000 to certain individuals who refrain from firearm violence. A 2019 study published in the American Journal of Public Health found that the program significantly reduced shootings and gun homicides, though it likely led to an increase in non-firearm violence.