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In 2008, San Diego police started monthly curfew sweeps in southeastern San Diego neighborhoods. They’re still happening, though they take place far more often in some neighborhoods than others. If you are under 18 and out past 10 p.m., you can be arrested and you and your parents might face fines and a juvenile record, or routed into a diversion class.
Police say the sweeps are meant to ensure youth safety and deter youth from getting involved in criminal activity.
VOSD’s Rachel Evans wanted to learn more about these sweeps, so she joined the police department for a ride-along one night and then weeks later, returned to commonly swept areas, to observe the sweeps from the community’s perspective.
During the ride-along, Evans watched the officers arrest three minors, including one repeat offender who lived in Mexico and who officers ended up driving to the international border, where a relieved aunt scooped him up.
“It wasn’t apparent how the curfew sweep produced a successful result for the teen,” Evans wrote — the teen had been on his way to the border on his own when he was intercepted by the officers.
When asked by an officer what he thought of the sweeps, one teen responded, “pros and cons.” It’s important to keep young people safe from potential dangers on the streets, he said, but “the con is you get arrested.”
Weeks later, while at the Euclid Avenue trolley station after 10 p.m., police officers approached Evans during his sweep, citing her “youthful appearance.” Evans is in her 30s. Apparently, she writes, police approach quite a few adults during these sweeps.
While police say that many parents thank them for the sweeps, not all parents agree with the practice. The sweeps won’t end anytime soon, Evans writes.
Celebrating Saint Teresa
This week’s Border Report takes a look at the Missionaries of Charity in Tijuana, which has carried on Mother Teresa’s legacy, helping the city’s poor since 1988. Tijuana is where the push to canonize Mother Teresa began.
In other cross-border news, on Saturday there was a demonstration in Tijuana against same-sex marriage and migrant shelters in the city continue to be flooded with migrants hoping to cross into the U.S.
VOSD contributor Brooke Binkowski also provides details of Mexican businessman Jose Susumo Azano Matsura’s conviction Friday. Azano funneled more than half a million dollars to the campaigns of several San Diego politicians in 2012, including mayoral candidates Bonnie Dumanis and Bob Filner.
Big Day for Gonzalez
Politico named San Diego Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez one of 50 visionaries transforming American politics.
Gonzalez’s 2014 legislation that required all private-sector businesses to provide paid sick leave for their employees has made a splash nationwide. Her success in California made paid sick leave an achievable goal for liberals nationwide and is now part of the official Democratic platform and Hillary Clinton’s economic policy.
“If states are the laboratories of democracy, then Lorena Gonzalez might be the nation’s most ambitious progressive scientist,” Politico writes.
Proving Politico’s point, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed another landmark bill from Gonzalez Monday that expands overtime pay to farmworkers.
The governor also signed a couple of other bills we’ve written about:
One allows the Sycuan Indian tribe access to water from the Colorado River, North California and the new desalination plant in Carlsbad.
Another bill that Brown signed into law from Assemblywoman Shirley Weber would require public universities and colleges to accept CalFresh, so low-income students in need of food could use their benefits on campus. SDSU – where roughly 24 percent of students go without meals at some point due to lack of money – struggles to help its needy students.
Quick News Hits
• The San Diego Zoo continues to benefit from a special tax that was approved by voters 80 years ago, even as its revenue and admissions prices have steadily increased. We’ve written about how the zoo has held on to the dedicated revenue stream, even as politicians have floated ideas to use the fund to help with the rest of Balboa Park’s $300 million infrastructure deficit. (Union-Tribune)
• The San Diego City Council will be voting on new community plans for North Park, Golden Hill, San Ysidro and Uptown, which includes Bankers Hill, Hillcrest, Mission Hills and part of University Heights. These plans are one of the primary vehicles for implementing the city’s ambitious Climate Action Plan and, as we’ve reported, could undermine it. (KPBS)
• A construction boom downtown is expected to provide $49.2 million over the next five years in developer’s fees that would go toward parks, transportation and fire stations. (Union-Tribune)
• In San Diego County, there were almost 3,500 opioid-related deaths between 2000 and 2015. Last year, that meant one death every 33 hours. (inewsource)
• VOSD’s Lisa Halverstadt used Twitter to explain a big shift being made by Father Joe’s Villages, the region’s biggest nonprofit serving the homeless.
Correction: An earlier version of this post misstated the time San Diego’s youth curfew begins. It goes into effect at 10 p.m.