Scavenging is one of the oldest continuous forms of industry found in human settlements. Never romanticized,
it nonetheless seems to be always with us. The value of aluminium cans and other recyclables travels up and down much like that of say oil. When the price is good scavengers get busy creating a commodity from rejected material and earn some minor income for themselves. Spend any time in a built-up area and you eventually spot scavengers. That bastion of high priced housing and advanced technology, San Francisco, is no exception. Lately, though, the cities network of businesses where pop cans and such are redeemed has begun to thin out. This is tough on the scavengers.
Collecting cans to survive: a ‘dark future’ as California recycling centers vanish. Poor and homeless San Franciscans rely on income earned by trading cans for cash, but their subsistence is under threat as hundreds of centers close down
image: Ken Ishikawa via Flickr/CC
You really gotta read this.
San Francisco tech worker: “I don’t want to see homeless riff-raff”. In an open letter to the city’s mayor Ed Lee, entrepreneur Justin Keller said he is “outraged” that wealthy workers have to see people in pain and despair
image: HollyEmma via Flickr/CC
Once-industrialized areas of San Francisco that were home to a blue collar middle class continue to move into suburban poverty.
As Bay Area poverty shifts from cities to suburbia, services lag
From climate to culture and scenery, San Francisco remains one of North America’s best regarded cities. It has, however, gotten expensive to live in over the last couple of decades. It is difficult to see the attractiveness of a place amp up its economy only for that to jeopardize the qualities that made it attractive to start with. Suburban poverty has been one of the by products of this process in many places. For the San Francisco Bay area documentation was published in January by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco in a Community Development Research Brief on the suburbanization of poverty. It seems the region is somewhat ahead of the national trend.
photo: DaNascat via Wikimedia Commons