SAN FRANCISCO — The District Attorney’s Office in San Francisco is in the midst of a staff shortage that could potentially impact cases, as reported by the San Francisco Examiner on Friday, November 13.
SF District Attorney Chesa Boudin is urging SF Mayor London Breed to fill in key positions, which has to be approved by her. Mayor Breed has put a hiring freeze on everyone but essential workers as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
Boudin, who has been district attorney since January 2020, said that employees raised concerns about the staff shortage, warning that “high volume of cases will cause them to make an inadvertent mistake in their handling of their cases,” which can result in “severe ramifications for their license to practice law.”
Staff shortages at the District Attorney’s Office has affected domestic and homicide violence units as well as problems at the General Felonies Unit. Individual prosecutors are currently handling more cases than they’re supposed to, from 150 to 229 cases, which is a 79-case jump.
Spokesperson Sarah Owens, representing Mayor Breed’s office, says that all departments must receive approval before filling in vacancies and have “been allowed to present on why that position is essential. Many departments have presented positions they wanted to fill and have been denied that request.”
Boudin says that hiring more staff at the office is “critical to the administration of justice” in San Francisco.
The District Attorney’s chief of staff, David Campos, says that Boudin is sending a request for Mayor Breed to fill 10-11 positions. As of now, Mayor Breed’s office says that four of eight positions have been approved.