DALY CITY (KPIX 5) — A sharp increase in the number of recreational vehicles in San Mateo County is coinciding with the growing homeless situation, but not all of the RVs are housing the homeless. Officials say a number of the campers are providing shelter for workers who can’t afford to live in the county.
A half dozen RVs are parked along South Park Plaza Drive, an unincorporated part of San Mateo County near Daly City. They are camped between an elementary school and a middle school on the edge of a residential neighborhood.READ MORE: COVID Vaccines: Marin County Set To Expand Eligibility; Seniors Say Finding Appointments Still A Challenge
“It just makes the residents nervous with the RVs,” said Colleen Seck who lives nearby. “It’s turning into kind of a slum area.”
According to the official count released late last week, the number of homeless people in San Mateo County has spiked in the last two years: from 1,253 in 2017 to 1,512 today, a 21 percent increase. A big portion of that growth comes from people living in RVs: 494 residents, a 127 percent jump.
“They need help, too. I mean, everyone needs help,” said Seck. “But I don’t want them at my front door like that. I don’t know why they can’t do something about it.READ MORE: Stunning Yellow Superbloom Pops Up In Half Moon Bay - 'It's Perfect'
San Mateo County supervisor David Canepa says most in the RV’s are homeless in need of assistance from the county, but some are living here to be closer to their jobs. A man in one of the RVs told KPIX 5 off-camera that he is an Uber driver and the camper is his office and “crash pad.”
“It may be a construction worker. It may be someone who lives here permanently,” Canepa said. “The county is looking to identify an area where we could park these campers.”
The supervisor said one solution may be a sanctioned temporary RV park just outside airport property, but the discussion among county officials has only just begun.MORE NEWS: COVID: Santa Clara Supervisors Approve $5/Hour Grocery Worker Hazard Pay
For now, the RVs are parked on a sidewalk with no hookups for fresh water or ways to dispose of waste, which the supervisor said is a public health issue, an issue that for now has no end in sight.