Billboard in San Francisco will warn tourists of the dangers of fentanyl – CBS San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX) — A group of mothers will unveil a new campaign on Monday that warns tourists to stay away from San Francisco amid the city’s drug crisis that is putting residents and visitors alike at risk.

The organization, Mothers Against Drug Deaths, buys ads to remind people among iconic landmarks that San Francisco is also known for its outdoor drug market.

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“My daughter didn’t go to San Francisco for the Embarcadero. She didn’t go to San Francisco for Union Square or to see the Golden Gate Bridge. She went to San Francisco to buy her medicine,” said East Bay mother Gina McDonald, a member of Mothers Against Drug Deaths.

McDonald said she often dreads late-night calls, especially from the hospital or the police.

“Every night is wonder, worry,” McDonald said. Her 24-year-old daughter, Sam, is a drug addict. His addiction consumed the family.

“My other kid misses his sister. His dad was pushed to the brink. His dad had to go and pay the drug dealer at some point for his safety,” McDonald said.

Some members of the organization have lost children to overdoses.

On Monday at 1 p.m., Mothers Against Drug Deaths will unveil the large billboard in Union Square.

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With the Golden Gate Bridge as a backdrop, the billboard will read, “Famous around the world for our brains, our beauty and, now, cheap fentanyl.”

They said they wanted to raise awareness and warn visitors to stay away from San Francisco until politicians toughen up the issue. They were fed up with the lack of action.

“First, you have to get rid of the open drug market. Second, as an addict, offer either jail or treatment,” McDonald said.

The organization will also buy ads on social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook.

Public health officials said there have been more than 1,360 deaths in San Francisco over the past two years, many of which were attributed to fentanyl.

“We are desperate. We are desperate as moms, all of us need help,” McDonald said.

She said her daughter was in treatment and out.

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The organization SF Travel, which works to promote tourism in the town, issued a statement which read: ‘The tourism industry has been very vocal and active on the need to improve the situation on our street. This campaign does not punish the city. This campaign only hurts small businesses struggling to recover from the damage caused by the pandemic. »

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