California voters may be asked to steer homeless to services

KATHLEEN RONAYNE Associated Press SACRAMENTO (AP) — California voters could decide next year whether to create new county courts to steer homeless people to mental health and drug addiction treatment programs. Former Assemblyman Mike Gatto, a Democrat, proposed a ballot measure on Thursday aimed at providing services to people who commit crimes like defecating in public or using drugs. "When someone breaks the law, it should be enforced. However, certain criminal acts should be treated not as something meriting harsh punishment, but as a 'cry for help,'" the introductory text to his proposed ballot measure reads. The text still needs approval from the state for Gatto to start gathering signatures, and it would need signatures of roughly 620,000 Californians to make it onto the ball
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