San Francisco hires 200 public health workers to support needs of Tenderloin community

San Francisco has met its goal of hiring 200 public health workers to support the Tenderloin community.

The San Francisco Department of Public Health said the city has hired and onboarded 204 new employees who will help those experiencing homelessness or are marginally housed and have mental health or substance use disorders.

Back in May, Mayor London Breed issued a 90-day emergency declaration to address the city's overdose crisis that is concentrated in the Tenderloin neighborhood.

The newly hired public health staff will play critical roles in the city's response to save lives and support people with complex behavioral health needs by providing access to care, treatment, and connections to other needed services.

Dr. Hillary Kunins, Director of Behavioral Health Services, said, "We have staffed up to a level that can begin to address the scale of need we see in our communities around mental health and substance use."

The new staff includes behavioral health clinicians, pharmacists, health workers, and others who will build out effective programs and services that can reach people where they are.