Letter from Ross
In 2011 Sheriff Mike Hennessey asked me to run for Sheriff to continue his progressive legacy. In an overwhelming victory that November,our progressive community was empowered to move San Franciscoforward with the values that made our City famous.
We have continued the legacy. Our record in the Sheriff’s office is an inspiration for corrections departments and law enforcement agencies throughout the United States. Together, we have reduced the size of the jail population to unprecedented levels. We have the lowest recidivism rates inSan Francisco's modern history. We have instituted programs that treat and assist in making sure that our community is safer, despite the new state mandated program (State Prisoner Realignment AB-109) to have prisoners incarcerated in their local communities.
This year, we are proud that our SF Sheriff's Department Five Keys Charter High School is nominated as one of five programs in the country by the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University to be an innovative leader - the only law enforcement agency in the nation selected! And the only law enforcement agency in the country to win the Pioneer Institute's award for Innovation in Education during-and-after incarceration.
But, we have so much more to do. Unlike our declining jail population, one group of inmates not trending downward are people with serious dual diagnosed mental health and substance abuse issues. Our jails have become the city's largest provider of mental health beds. We are the default treatment center -- this is not the direction San Francisco should be going. Also, we continue to see high incarceration rates of African Americans and Latinos who cannot afford to endure an expensive criminal justice system, and upon release from jail, a cost prohibitive city.
Over the last 50 years, the U.S. criminal justice system has been propelled by an unproductive system of retribution - enabling the carousel effect of over-building prisons and jails and government, while doing little to improve public safety. San Francisco has not been immune to this mindset.
As the elected Supervisor for District Five, and now as Sheriff, I'll continue to stand up to the forces that put their self interests before the people. Just like Sheriff Mike Hennessey, I am an "outsider." My administration will continue to build on the progressive policies that make the San Francisco Sheriff's Department a national leader and innovator.
Please help bring our message to the people. I respectfully ask for your vote.
Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi