Skip to main content

tv   BOS Rules Committee  SFGTV  April 12, 2021 10:00am-12:31pm PDT

10:00 am
10:01 am
>> good morning and welcome to the board of supervisors rule committee monday, april 12th, 2021. i'm the chair of the committee aaron peskin joined by supervisor mandelman and soon to be joined by supervisor connie chan. our clerk is mr. victor young. mr. young, do you have any announcements? >> clerk: the board of supervisors legislative chamber and committee room are closed. however, members will be participating in the meeting remotely. committee members will attend the meeting through its video conference and participate in
10:02 am
the meeting to the same extent as if they were physically present comments to speak during public comment are available by phone by calling 415-655-0001. the meeting i.d. is 185. you'll be muted and in listening mode only. dial star 3 to be added to the line to speak. best practices are to call from a quiet location. you may e-mail me myself. public comment by e-mail it will be forwarded to the
10:03 am
supervisors and included as part of the official file. and i would also like to note that supervisor chan has logged in. >> supervisor peskin: could you read the first item. >> clerk: yes. item one is that the public utilities commission would otherwise be required to install without competitive bidding, subject to specified conditions. >> supervisor peskin: thank you. this is primarily sponsored by president walton. i see mr. burch is here. we're joined by manuel from the public utility commission.
10:04 am
go ahead, perspectivy. >> good morning chair peskin and the rules committee. i would just like to say a couple of words about this item as we look to revitalize our public housing in district two. this small admin change will allow us to stay on schedule and also it will allow for all greenhouse and 100% energy and gas. and also, like we said we have staff here from the p.u.c. that will also answer questions. >> supervisor peskin: thank you, mr. burch. mr. ramirez. good morning. >> good morning, supervisors. my name is manuel ramirez. i'll give you a little bit of a background introduction into this ordinance. consistent with chapter 99.2 in
10:05 am
these administrative code. the development agreement generally requires developers to obtain from the p.u.c.. we treat the payments and the cost sharing similar to what pg&e would do. with that in mind, the p.u.c. adopted regulations last amended in 2017 that would require the cost of new electric facilities with developers. the they that the infrastructure is built out, the developers are required to pay 100% of the sub structures. meaning the conduits that the facility runs through. all rules and regulations allow for an applicant to do the installation of the electric facility that the p.u.c. would
10:06 am
be required to do and then we would reimburse the developers. unfortunately, our rules and regulations while they do allow for the applicants, there is no mechanism for us to directly reimburse the developers. this ordinance sort of closes that gap. the proposed amendments of chapter 99 were waived the city's competitive bidding requirements for construction projects to contract directly with the developers that these facilities as new development projects. the ordinance still has protection. specifically, the p.u.c. can only have entities that regard the developer to complete infrastructure for the project and two, include the workforce that requires nondiscrimination and payment of wages.
10:07 am
this ordinance has some protections to prevent from oversiting the work. we do a cost estimate and we would compare what it would cost to do the installation versus what it would cost to do the developer. is to keep on their timelines and their schedule. it's sometimes faster for them to go ahead and do the installation and make sure that the schedules for their construction projects are on time. i'm happy to answer questions. >> thank you, mr. ramirez. and i was also briefed by mr. scarpula over the weekend and talked to president walton about it before we scheduled it and it appears to be fine by this supervisor. any comments or questions from
10:08 am
members? seeing none. is there any public comment on this item -- >> chairman: supervisor chan, i've got to get my chat button fixed. >> supervisor chan: can you hear me? >> yes. >> supervisor chan: my question is for in terms of labor and expertise and installation, what likely to be -- what kind of expectations would require. i assume that there are probably not that many people out there with that type of
10:09 am
expertise already. is that correct? >> so the work required is with some medium to high voltage electric facilities and there are a lot of contractors that can do that work. our you tilt is required to do that work. to just proceed with that portion of the work. >> supervisor chan: okay. >> chairman: and the cost reimbursement is the same in either event. is that correct? >> that's correct. >> supervisor chan: thank you. >> chairman: all right. why don't we step to public comment. >> clerk: members of the public who wish to provide public comment on this item so call (415) 655-0001 the meeting id is 1875 our 55557.
10:10 am
then press pound and pound again. if you haven't already done so, please press star to speak. please wait until the system and one person in line to speak. >> chairman: first speaker, please. go ahead, speaker. >> clerk: speaker, you have been unmuted, you may begin your public comment. >> all right. i'm going to go ahead and mute the caller and go to the next
10:11 am
caller. >> chairman: thank you. >> chairman: and this is for item number one. >> the caller disconnected. i'll go ahead and unmute and circle back to the next caller back again. caller has been unmuted. all right. there is no more callers. >> chairman: all right. public comment is closed. supervisor mandelman. >> supervisor mandelman: thank you supervisor peskin. i believe this is in further answer of long standing city policies to encourage the provision of clean, green municipal power developed in
10:12 am
the city. that are being provided by the developers as part of the projects and would like to be added as a cosponsor. >> chairman: all right. and i will take that on the motion. clerk young, a roll call please. >> clerk: on that motion [roll call] the motion passes without objection. >> chairman: next item please. >> clerk: next on the agenda is item number two the appointment of james byrne to the police commission april 30th, 2024. >> chairman: thank you, mr. young, colleagues. this is an appointment nomination to the police
10:13 am
commission made by mayor breed of james burn who i have had the opportunity to interview and i believe the two of you have had the opportunity to do so as well. i would like to, if there are any opening comments feel free to make them. if not, i'd like to hear from mr. byrne and then follow up with any questions that we may have and then go to public comment. seeing no questions or initial comments from the rules committee. mr. byrne. good morning. welcome. the floor is yours for as long as you would like it. >> good morning chair peskin, vice chairmandalman and supervisor chan. thank you for this opportunity and speak to you today.
10:14 am
it was a great. the police commission plays an important role in the oversight of the police department. this is an extremely important role in any democracy. supervisors, 2,000 years ago during the roman republic, the question was asked, who guards the guardians. democracies have struggled with this question for over twenty-five years. one of the guards in san francisco is the police commission. i the son of irish immigrants. i was born near mcclaren park. i have lived almost my entire life in san francisco. i have seen many changes in the city. polices in the u.s. and in san francisco is undergoing many
10:15 am
changes. i want to be part of that change. it inspires me to be part of that change. as a young man while traveling by train with my sister in northern ireland, i was forcibly removed from my seat and detained with a rifle held to me at close point by northern irish police purely because they suspected i was an irish catholic. i was terrified. my teenage sister thought i was going to be taken away. i experienced police abuse and bias first-hand and that has never left me. i have seen the benefits as a result of the police reforms in northern ireland. in my immigration law practice represent people from northern ireland, i've studied police
10:16 am
reform arising from the patent police report and used it as a part of premise as their defense. that culture changed though not perfect has worked in northern ireland. it will work in san francisco. currently, supervisor walton and others and spearheading a policing plan in the bayview neighborhood. from the meetings i've watched the police commission, this plan appears promising. but it is one thing to listen to a presentation at meetings. it is another to go out into the field and get your hands dirty and see what's going on in the bayview, in the tenderloin, and in the mission, but also in the castro, in the sunniside, in the excelsior, in bernal heights and all the wonderful neighborhoods that
10:17 am
make up this great city. i intend if i am confirmed to get my hands dirty and to go out into the neighborhoods and see how these plans are implemented. the issue of police accountability is currently being addressed by the police commission. in reaction to the men and women in disciplinary matters. complaints about the timeliness of disclosure of those records. this is an issue i would like the commission to continue to focus on. another issue that will be before the board is a new crisis response team that the board of supervisors has created to do with crisis situations that may not require or benefit from police presence. in the past, these matters
10:18 am
would have been handled by the police. this is a new program, but it's not a program without precedent. a number of years ago, i was representing pro bono a tenant wofs being evicted. the sheriff's office sent a deputy to see where the lady was going to live on the day of the eviction. on the day of the eviction, the sheriff's office brought a social worker to deal with the problem. the social worker had a much more appropriate and deescalating response. the crisis response team when fully trained and running full-time will be able to serve a preventive and social work role for the city. change is always hard but it works and it will work. when you're allowed to smoke in restaurants and bars. the owners were viamently
10:19 am
opposed to the change. over time, they adapted to the change and i am sure not very many of them want to go back to the way it was. hopefully, these changes, these reforms to the police department will work and they too realize it's for the better. our justice system works most of the time for most of us, but it's not perfect and i have fought for the victims who've been left out of that system time and time again. i have dedicated my entire professional career to helping immigrants stay in this country. i understand their fears. i know that a documented immigrant let alone an
10:20 am
undocumented immigrant in a criminal court is far less equal than an american citizen. the u.s. citizen is worried about how much time he will be doing. this gives prosecutors tremendous leverage. i have seen the value of our sanctuary city policy. how many times does a miner criminal arrest even without conviction lead to deportations and families split asunder. i want to be their voice on the commission. san francisco is a city of immigrants. these people need a voice, i want to be that voice. change sometimes comes slowly.
10:21 am
as robert kennedy said in south africa, it is from numerous acts of courage and belief that human history is shaped each time a man stands up for an ideal or improves the lots of others or strikes out against injustice. he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, these ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest wall of oppression and resistance. i have dedicated my entire professional career to being a tiny ripple of hope. thank you, supervisors. >> chairman: thank you, counselor byrne and i'm sure
10:22 am
that there are questions from members. let me just start with one very obvious one and this is a sillily question, but it's a question i have to ask which is inso far as this seat requires a retired judge, which you are not or trial experience. it sounds like you have plenty of trial experience, is that correct, counselor? >> yes, supervisor. >> chairman: with that. i do have some follow-up questions but let me turn it over to my colleagues. supervisor mandelman, any questions or comments? >> supervisor mandelman: i think supervisor chan was waiving her hand. >> chairman: sorry. supervisor chan.
10:23 am
>> supervisor chan: thank you, chair peskin. my question today for mr. byrne is for us, i think you kind of mentioned that about the change of times and what we deem at one point in law enforcement was valid as we make progress and we learned, you know, new ways of thinking and really better understanding of how law enforcement and its system really impact people and we can see especially most recently how that impacts communities of color and what i would love to understand, you know, i think which i really agree most recently mayor breed has talked about looking at the law enforcement budget specifically for our san francisco police department budget and to really think about what it means to keep the community safe and i
10:24 am
agree with her that to really which now has, that's what we have developed is the crisis response team to really allocate dedicated a team of experts, mental health experts, social worker in response to mental health issues or homeless issues, all those issues that related to wellness and, you know, mental health, all that is currently happening on our streets with that too comes ways of instead of having law enforcement on our school sites, we're making sure we have nurses and counselors on our school sites. it's a new direction that we're looking at how to deescalate situations in our community. so i just want to get your take on that specific issue if you
10:25 am
can elaborate because that also impacts the way we view police department's budget and how do we allocate resources. >> thank you. i think the crisis response team started late last year and isn't operating 24/7 yet as i'm aware. so i think it's important that that be -- the team be fully trained and implemented before looking at the police budget and how to allocate resources correctly. if the police department is doing a lot of that work particularly in the late hour of the evening and during the
10:26 am
night. it's important that team be up and running completely before you take that police department out of that situation because the last thing you want is an adequate response so in some ways it may require more money in order to get the crisis response team fully trained and up and running. >> chairman: supervisor chan. >> supervisor chan: i think then my followup question will be. so i guess maybe it's almost a yes or no question. so i soon with that, you are supportive of this initiative. you wanted to see it happening and moving it forward and will
10:27 am
there be sort of -- what will be your take to kind of help make sure that it does work and that this model does work and move this forward? what will you bring to the table to make that happen should you be confirmed and appointed to the police commission? >> well, as i opened with my remarks, so i like to go out and get my hands dirty. if i'm allowed to go out on one of the crisis response team's calls to see exactly how they do work and, at the same time, go out with the san francisco police department to see how they deal with the issue so i would have some method of comparison because you don't want to -- for doctors do no
10:28 am
harm and so you want the crisis response team to work but you don't want it to have a learning curve. you want to be able to smoothly adapt to the situation as possible. they're going to be learning pains, but fortunately, the police department is there at this time to at least help cover for them until such time as they're fully trained. and i intend to go out and see that they are as trained as best that i can determine along with i'm sure other people. i'm sure i won't be alone in this. >> supervisor chan: thank you. so chair peskin, i think this is more of a comment and all i wanted to say is, you know,
10:29 am
i've had a conversation with mr. byrne and it was a great conversation and i really learned a lot about his work, working with immigrants and including some of the story, a more personal story that i think he has mentioned in conversations assisting people i think even with this crisis response team. i think we're able to dive deeper about people with mental health issues and eviction in need of help and people who are in need of immigration status living in fear. just all that. sorry about that. background noise. and so we're also training a puppy.
10:30 am
sorry about that. i also wanted to say um -- i also had a brief conversation with police commission president malia. >> president cohen: really wanting to make sure from our last appointment from mr. larry yee to you now mr. byrne to make sure there is a team of commission and really looking at the support our police department making progress and i think that, you know, she really under her leadership, we want to make sure there is support all around to move the agenda forward. so she's also in support of you and i was pleased to hear, i'm ready to look forward to hearing more public comments today, but i'm definitely
10:31 am
inclined to support our appointment today. so thank you and again, my apologies for all the noises during this comment and interruption. >> chairman: thank you, supervisor chan. vice chair mandelman. >> supervisor mandelman: thank you chair peskin. we had a good conversation. i want to say that i was impressed and gratified by mr. byrnes commitment to reform and ensuring that we achieve a police department that's unbiased and hue main and nonabusive and i think in san francisco, particularly in this moment that has to be a threshold necessary set of qualifications for any police
10:32 am
commissioner and i think mr. byrnes has shown by his past work, his commitment to justice and the inequitable society in has been amply demonstrated. i wanted to just touch on a few things. you can respond if you want to or can. the first thing i want to say as we consider another nominee to the police commission. as i said that a commitment to reform is necessary. in my view for police commissioners in san francisco at this moment. i think what i'm hearing is a desire for an effective as well as compassionate policing and concerns about the efficacy of our criminal justice system
10:33 am
more broadly in the city. concerned about property crime rates and home invasions. sometimes at the same home. concerns about a perception if not always the reality of unsafety in the city. and also, the bad experiences that, you know, take on a life of their own as they get repeated through the mill. but having police officers to say this city doesn't really care about crime, isn't going to do anything, they're not even going to report it. we can't do anything. in some ways, this is for the police department to address a broader conversation but as a commissioner i would effect you would have a police department that does everything we can to prevent and solve and deter
10:34 am
crime. [inaudible] >> if it's a question, i agree with everything you just said, supervisor. >> supervisor mandelman: that is an answer i will accept. thank you, mr. byrnes. my second point goes to the street crisis response team and i am a strong supporter of the street crisis support team. i think it's important to remember that as we envision the street crisis response team, we gave this program many different charges. one of them was to provide a level of response to the street they are simply not getting
10:35 am
right now from public health. we're very close to being in crisis and they're just not getting the outreach and intervention that they need and the residents in san francisco are wondering what the hell is going on and we're worried about sick people before they intervene before they're just running in traffic and absolutely out of their mind. so partly the street force is out of mental health sf was beginning to address that existing vacuum for a service that was simply not being provided. secondly, there was a hope in the height of the george floyd summer that we might be able to divert some calls. the first set of folks on the scene wouldn't necessarily be police officers. and our maximalist hope not
10:36 am
funded but aspirationally. out of an overall total number of calls that have come in for police service and over 300,000 calls a year. i want to thank you for your commitment to reenvisioning policing and finding alternatives. but even if the street crisis team is a wild success, it will divert a fraction of the calls for police services that come in and, again, finding other alternatives and other creative ways ensuring police response is not the only tool we have in our tool box. i support. but i also think it's important to be aware of the limitations of and set realistic expectations for what alternatives can achieve. and that was a -- another
10:37 am
speech that you could acknowledge or just nod. [ laughter ] >> again, i agree with everything you said that particularly given the current climate of anti-asian violence, yeah. almost at least in the asian community, particularly the chinese community it absolutely calls for an increase police presence in order to attempt to deter that type of despicable behavior that's going on. >> supervisor mandelman: thank you. and my last point i will make and i think this should be an easy one. the importance of police recruiting that looks like san francisco, a police force that
10:38 am
looks like and is part of and integrated into the communities that are being policed. and i think that we could achieve, we could go a long way to breaking down some of the barriers between police and community and we do make that leap as we recruit and train and retain excellent police officers who have received the highest quality of training and come from diverse backgrounds. one of the biggest challenges right now i think is, you know, restoring the belief that this is actually profession that is valued and for which we are grateful when folks in particular people of color and queer people sign up to go into the even harder than being a police commissioner job being a police officer and so that is
10:39 am
another little statement that is as a police commissioner, you know, part of your job will be ensuring that we are able to attract and retain these high quality excellent diverse officers. >> absolutely. i mean, obviously, for the police to be part of the community, it would be nice if they could afford to live in the community and just as schoolteachers are facing the housing crisis so police officers are and many of them are living farther and farther away from the city. >> supervisor mandelman: thank you, mr. byrne. i will be supporting your nomination. >> thank you, supervisor. >> chairman: thank you, supervisor mandelman. mr. byrne, a couple of questions. one of which i raised when we
10:40 am
spoke and the other one related to liquor form 700. but i first wanted to start with the issue of tasers and where you fall on that public policy matter? >> at this time, i agree with the policy. i think both the police commission and the board of supervisors that the san francisco police should not be armed with tasers. recently, california law has changed. let me go back. the key issue is that tasers have been lethal. it's crazy to believe that tasers don't kill people. tasers do kill people maybe not as much as bullets but they're
10:41 am
still a lethal force and one of the changes to california law recently is the police officer's use of force on when deadly force is authorized. prior to about three years ago, a police officer a felony person could use deadly force. but the california legislature has basically put a totality of the circumstances and reasonable tests now for the use of deadly force and it was interesting in preparing for the hearing that a comment was on the california police officer's association website, the comment about the change and particularly to the point in light of the new staff, officers are going to need new training. and so i believe at this time,
10:42 am
we need to see the effect of the california state legislatures change which does not give -- creates a reasonable test and the totality test. not some 19th century wild west test that was the previously law in the state of california. >> chairman: thank you, counselor byrne. let me just move to a question i have on your form 700s. it sounds like you've taken on a little bit of tenant law at least on a pro bono basis. on your form 700s, there is a long list of construction and engineering companies and building companies and i was wondering is that a different practice of law or is that immigration law and why those
10:43 am
appear on the form 700s? >> thank you for the question. they appear because there's i would almost say a dyer need for engineers particularly with all the new construction that's going on in the bay area and a huge part of my practice is getting work visas and green cards for these engineers and construction companies all over the bay area and other parts of the united states and so but i'm not related to anything with property development or getting building permits. it's solely to get their necessary workers in to the united states. >> understood and well explained and appreciated. if there are no other questions or comments from committee members, why don't we open this
10:44 am
up to public comment, mr. young. >> clerk: yes. members of the public wish to provide public comment should call (415) 655-0001. the meeting id is 187 545 5557. then press pound and pound again. if you haven't already done so, please press star to speak. and you may begin your comment. we currently have seventeen callers with four people in line to speak. >> chairman: first speaker, please. >> good morning. this is marlene tran, a long time activist in visitation valley and a cause i taught for 37 years both adults and
10:45 am
immigrant children in san francisco. i want to thank the mayor for nominating mr. byrne. immigrants need all the help they can get. i support mr. james byrne for the police commission and he will be a good candidate because i am so and really be involved with our residents so that he has a really good picture of what it's all about. so i hope the commissioners or rather the supervisors will let him be our next police commissioner. thank you. >> chairman: thank you, ms. tran. next speaker, please. >> so board of supervisors, when you read the first agenda
10:46 am
item, we could not participate with our public comment. therefore, the agenda item has to be revisited. >> chairman: thank you. >> -- agenda item number 2, i do participate in all of the police commission meetings and there is a lot of politics going on at that police commission meeting. one of the main persons who is creating a lot of confusion at all the police commission meetings is the chair. she has the habit of making comments, often when people speak on public comment and some of the commentors are very astute. i've known them for a long time. in my humble opinion, this
10:47 am
police commission, the way it operates has to be completely revamped. now you have this commission, he may say what he wants to say, but i don't think he lives in a time that is relevant and knows what really is going on ground zero. bayview is not what it used to be many years ago. with all the shootings and killings, we need somebody who really knows the difference between gangs and [inaudible] and we really need a person who knows about the community response network and we just can't have somebody coming z
10:48 am
10:49 am
10:50 am
10:51 am
. >> chairman: next speaker please. >> super, this is clay. >> chairman: operations if you can get the next speaker. >> chairman peskin and supervisors, i've been a san francisco business owner for 30 years. jim has guided us and advised us on the legal issues to employ irish workers. jim showed and demonstrated care for the whole person, not just our employees. he followed up and asked questions during their time with us asking how they were, how their experience was in san francisco. i've experienced jim's integrity and empathy
10:52 am
first-hand. so i am here to strongly support his nomination. thank you. >> chairman: thank you, mr. dougin. next speaker, please. >> good morning. i am a local of san francisco. i've also grown up in san francisco and i've known jim almost my entire life and he's a great man. he would be a fantastic addition to the police commission. he's got great morals. he's from san francisco. and he's helped my family out
10:53 am
as well. >> chairman: thank you. next speaker. go ahead, speaker. >> good morning, supervisors. i am a licensed attorney, i am a member of the executive committee of the immigrant rights commission. i'm here speaking in my personal capacity. i also support the appointment of mr. byrne to the police commission. because of his commitment to the police commission and i do have a voice that has the experience that mr. byrne has with the immigrant community will serve the commission well. thank you for your time. >> chairman: thank you. next speaker please
10:54 am
>> hi. i met the jim byrne through my paper work for immigration to this country. i found him to be a very understandable person. my community knows him very well. so he's a very rounded person and i definitely support him for the commission position. thank you. >> chairman: thank you. >> good morning supervisors. can you hear me? >> yes. >> good morning. good morning supervisors. this is arcella. i am a professor where the majority of my students are
10:55 am
immigrants. i'm an immigrant myself. of course, of other religions and i'm calling in support of mr. jim byrne to be appointed to the police commission. i met mr. byrne and i asked questions and i'm very satisfied. he understand the trials and tribulations of the immigrant community and, myself, my community. that's what it passed for decades. they have police. they have been caught in turn. many of you know in the news, his answers were very satisfying and i hope he gets appointed to the commission, the police commission and my community looks forward to working with him. thank you very much for listening. >> chairman: thank you. next speaker, please.
10:56 am
>> good morning ladies and gentlemen, supervisors. my name is robert wong. i'm a member of the chinese consolidated benevolent here in the chinatown of san francisco. mr. james byrne has a long history as an immigrant attorney that has protected some of our most vulnerable populations in our san francisco communities. when immigrants come to our city and when they need help, we should help them as they have helped us now and in the past. james byrne is an excellent choice for the police commission. he is also an attorney and i definitely support him for the position of police commissioner for the great city of san
10:57 am
francisco. thank you for giving me time to speak. thank you again. >> chairman: thank you, mr. wong. next speaker please. >> hi supervisors. i'm here to call in support for james byrne as well. his background resinated they came from a country that was stooped. many of the reasons for this country is the develop of distrust because of james byrne's experience, i do believe he could be an advocate and a bridge to the individuals and the immigrant community as they navigate the criminal justice system for the first time and having talked with supervisor mandelman i'm
10:58 am
confident he's going to take a wholistic approach for really understanding what it means for police reform. there's a lot of lead bullets but a lot of -- the wholistic approach is going to require everything from police reform to increase diversity on the police staff and solving all these issues. i'm confident from hearing the call today and all the questions and his background and as a lawyer for immigrants will increase trust and safety. thank you. >> chairman: thank you. next speaker. good morning, supervisors. my name is mark and i'm a filipino immigrant. i work at st. agnes church and that's where i've met jim and his wife.
10:59 am
in the fall of 2019, i was helping an immigrant family i met in el paso, texas, who had just crossed the border seeking asylum. i asked jim if he could help them. since then, jim has been helping the family throughout their asylum proceedings as i have been accompanying them. i think that the san francisco police commission would benefit greatly from integrity and kindness. thank you so much for your consideration. >> chairman: thank you. next speaker please. >> hi, good morning supervisors. my name is carla torres. i'm a san francisco native and also a child of immigrants and
11:00 am
personally know jim through his help of my father: it was an awful experience watching him get handcuffed and jim providing my family with this trust and the legal immigration system and he just provided us with this trust and we confided in him, he's gave us all of his support and i think that during his work with immigrant communities and other marginalized communities, he has a really good input and truly knows the effects of the long lasting effects that this has on the community and i think that because of his work he does have the experience and and knowledge that would benefit the police commission. thank you >> thank you for your testimony.
11:01 am
next speaker. >> hi. i am the president of the [inaudible] women's club and part of the general federation of the women's club in the nation. i was by promoting diversity and civic engagement and culture in the bay area. and i met with mr. jim recently and by reading about especially coming from, you know, immigration and also knowing more about diversity and community and law. it's very important. i do support him 100% and i do
11:02 am
believe our community needs to be more united in our diversity. thank you very much. >> chairman: thank you. next speaker. >> clerk: that may have been our last speaker for public comment on this item. i am waiting for confirmation. >> chair, sorry. i might be the last speaker. >> clerk: yes. thank you. >> thank you. >> chairman: is that, annie. go ahead. >> sorry. i wasn't sure i was on the line. good morning, supervisors. i'm here. this is annie chung from [inaudible] for the elderly and i'm also
11:03 am
here to support jim's nomination to the police commission. sf pathway to citizenship and we have helped probably over now 10,000l.p.r. residents to become legal residents and we do this with a large number of volunteers who will spend a whole i really appreciate pro bono attorneys like mr. byrne who is willing to spend a lot of time fighting for the immigrants who are usually stripped of their rights and eager to do everything they can and then get citizenship. so with jim's background as an advocate for the voiceless and the most vulnerable, people,
11:04 am
mostly minorities who face deportation, really, those are the darkest hours and you can imagine the fear that our community has particularly has nowadays with the anti-asian hate crimes. so we're looking forward to a police commissioner who would listen, who understands the fears of the immigrants and who would really roller their sleeves and come down to the community to work with us so we could provide public safety and some reforms for community police work for us. so i'm here to urge the rules committee to support jim's nomination and hopefully we will see commissioner jim byrne working alongside us. >> are there any other members of the public for public
11:05 am
comment on this item number two? >> clerk: i believe that concludes public comment at this time. >> chairman: okay. public comment is closed. before we hear any final comments from committee members, let me join the comments of my colleagues by thanking mr. byrne for his willingness to serve. it is no small task and he seems to be absolutely up for the job and i would like to acknowledge mayor breed for making a good nomination that i think is going to be universally embraced. with that, are there any comments or questions. seeing none. why don't i first make a motion to amend the subject. motion by removing the word
11:06 am
"rejecting" in line three in the title and removing the word "rejects" in the move clause at line 13. on that motion, mr. clerk, roll call please. >> clerk: before that motion, i'm getting a comment from our tech support that there is one more comment. is that correct? >> chairman: i'm happy to re-open public comment. >> clerk: i'm just reading messages from them i believe. that completes public comment. the person calling in had already spoken. >> chairman: public comment is twice closed and a motion has been made on that motion. a role call please. >> clerk: yes. on that motion
11:07 am
[roll call] the motion passes without rejection. >> chairman: and why don't i make a motion to motion to send it to the full board of supervisors on that moegsz. >> clerk: on that motion [roll call] the motion passes out objection. >> chairman: thank you, mr. byrne. we will see you at the full board of supervisors this week. and supervisor mandelman will you make a motion to rescind the vote on item number one. >> supervisor mandelman: so moved. >> clerk: the motion to
11:08 am
rescind. [roll call] the motion to rescind passes out objection. >> chairman: okay. let's re-open item number one up to public comment. >> clerk: yes. members -- if you have not already done so please press star 3 to be added to the queue to speak. for those on hold, please continue to wait until the system indicates you have been unmuted. can we have the first caller for public comment on item number one. >> so supervisors, during this pandemic, it's very difficult for us to participate in this
11:09 am
virtual meetings and it makes it all the more convoluted than that deprived to speak on the topic. it's a really convoluted subject. where the citizens, the constituents, the taxpayers of the pay view nor has that been a meaningful meeting. now, we do understand that we have an issue that people want to use natural gas and at the same time, they want to talk about climate change and
11:10 am
completion of the ozone level. but the city hasn't been very clear of this and a planning department and others have been pushing for new development to have others in the restaurant run by electric city. we haven't had a hearing on this recently. we had one a long time ago. so some of us are interested in subjects like this because we deem ourselves environmentalists. we don't deem ourselves as jail birds or those who favor criminality. it's happening in our city right now with some heads of departments charged. and it starts with development. >> clerk: your time has
11:11 am
elapsed. >> chairman: are there any other speakers for item number one. >> clerk: i believe that was the last speaker for item number one. >> chairman: okay. public comment is closed. vice chair mandelman would you like to make a remotion. >> chairman: on that motion roll call, mr. young. >> clerk: yes. on that motion [roll call] . the motion passes without objection. >> chairman: and we are adjourned.
11:12 am
>> when i look at an old neon sign that's working or not working, i feel the family business that was in there. >> since 2009, citywide, sf shines, has supported businesses and sites like the ones that receive new neon signs. >> you know, sf shines is doing
11:13 am
an amazing job to bring back the lighting and the neon glow of san francisco. >> sf shines is such an amazing program, and i can't think of another program in another city that gives matching gunned funds to store owners, mom and pop owners, and if they've got a neon sign, they've really got a great way to advertise their business. >> this is a continuation of the sf shines program. >> focusing other neon signs is relatively new to us. of the seven neon signs, we've invested about $145,000. >> a good quality sign costs more, but it lasts infinitily longer. as opposed to lasting five
11:14 am
years, a good neon sign will last 15 to 20 years. >> in san francisco, the majority of neon signs are for mom-and-pop businesses. in order to be able to restore these signs, i think it gives back to your community. >> part of the project has to do with prioritizing certain signs in the neighborhood based on their aesthetics, based on their current signs, and base on the history. in the time that we've been here, we've seen a number of signs restored just on eddy street. >> there are a number of signs in the tenderloin and many more that are waiting or wanting to be restored. i have worked with randall and al, and we've mapped out every single one of them and rated them as to how much work they would need to get restored. that information is passed onto sf shines, and they are going
11:15 am
to rank it. so if they have x budget for a year, they can say all right, we're going to pick these five, and they're putting together clusters, so they build on top of what's already there. >> a cluster of neon signs is sort of, i guess, like a cluster of grapes. when you see them on a corner or on a block, it lights up the neighborhood and creates an ambient glow. if you havy got two of three of them, you've created an atmosphere that's almost like a movie set. >> some of the hotel, we've already invested in to get those neon signs for people to enjoy at night include the elk hotel, jefferson hotel, the verona, not to mention some we've done in chinatown, as well as the city's portal neighborhood. >> we got the fund to restore
11:16 am
it. it took five months, and the biggest challenge was it was completely infested with pigeons. once we got it clean, it came out beautiful. >> neon signs are often equated with film noir, and the noir genre as seen through the hollywood lens basically depicted despair and concentration. >> you would go downtown and see the most recent humphrey bogart film filled with neon in the background. and you'd see that on market street, and as market street got seedier and seedier and fewer people continued to go down, that was what happened to all the neon strips of light. >> the film nori might start
11:17 am
with the light filled with neon signs, and end with a scene with a single neon sign blinking and missing a few letters. >> one of my favorite scenes, orson welles is chasing rita hayworth with neon signs in the background. >> i think what the office of economic and workforce development is very excited with is that we'll be able to see more neon signs in a concentrated way lit up at night for visitors and most especially residents. the first coin laundry, the elm hotel, the western hotel are
11:18 am
ones that we want to focus on in the year ahead. >> neon signs are so iconic to certain neighborhoods like the hara, like the nightcap. we want to save as many historic and legacy neon signs in san francisco, and so do they. we bring the expertise, and they bring the means to actually get the job done. >> people in tenderloin get really excited as they see the signs relit. as you're driving through the tenderloin or the city, it pretty much tells you something exciting is happening here. >> knee an was created to make the night more friendly and advertise businesses. it's a great way of supporting and helping local businesses. >> there's so many ways to improve public safety. the standard way is having more eyes on the street, but there's other culturally significant ways to do that, and one those ways is lighting up the streets. but what better way and special
11:19 am
way to do that is by having old, historic neon signs lighting up our streets at night and casting away our shadows. >> when i see things coming back to life, it's like remembering how things were. it's remembering the hotel or the market that went to work seven days a week to raise their money or to provide a service, and it just -- it just -- it just
11:20 am
. >> you're watching coping with covid-19 with chris manners. >> hi. i'm chris manners, and you're watching coping with covid-19. today, my guest is phil ginsburg. he's the director of the san francisco rec and parks, and he's a national rec and park ranger. thank you for being here. >> hi, chris. thank you for having me. >> i've heard you have an exciting new exhibit that features social distancing and is outside, so it's safer. can you tell us a little bit about it? >> the golden gate 50 anniversary wasn't the celebration that we hoped for, but when life deals you lemons, you hope to make lemonade, and
11:21 am
we tried to engage people in the park in different ways. behind me is what we did. it's a public exhibit which has transformed peacock meadows into an enchanted forest of other worldly shapes and lights. it's to close out golden gate park's 150 years and to allow people to have outdoors socially distant fun. >> great. and what are the hours, and when can people go see it, and are there access for wheelchairs and strollers? >> well, it will run until
11:22 am
february 27, and the ways are wheelchair accessible. it will close in time to make the city's curfew. we're not supposed to be gathering. we're not supposed to be celebrating out there, unfortunately. it is a beautiful exhibit and is one that can be seen from the sidewalk or you can wander into the meadow, but we ask that people be really mindful of the circumstances in which we find ourselves. the most important thing for us is to be safe and healthy. do not show up with other households. come and see it, get a little taste of the holidays and leave so other people can enjoy it. if it's too crowded, comeback because it's going to be around
11:23 am
for a while. >> how long does it take to walk around the exhibit? >> well, you could be there for five minutes or 15 minutes or longer if it's not crowded. it's about in an acre of meadow, but it's very visible even from a fully accessible sidewalk. you'll get a sense of it. basically, there are sculpted trees, and it's gorgeous. i got an opportunity to visit it over the weekend. the conservatory of flowers is there, and then, we have our amazing spreckels temple of
11:24 am
music which was recently renovated and lit up in lights. >> i have information that it was created by a local artist. what can you tell us about it? >> well, it's a new concept, but the lights were previously installed in a park in toronto and also in las vegas. the installation has been paid for through private donations to the golden gate park's san francisco 150 campaign. it reflects a culture steeped in science and history and
11:25 am
culture. >> i can't wait to visit it. safely, of course. >> wear masks, distance, sanitize, and don't gather. >> well, thank you for coming on the show today, mr. ginsburg. i appreciate the time you've given us today. >> thank you, and thank you for giving so much attention to golden gate park which has been so wonderful for us during covid and deserves a lot of extra love and attention on its 150 anniversary. >> and that's it for this episode. we'll be back with more information shortly. thank you for watching coping with >> right before the game
11:26 am
starts, if i'm still on the field, i look around, and i just take a deep breath because it is so exciting and magical, not knowing what the season holds is very, very exciting. it was fast-paced, stressful, but the good kind of stressful, high energy. there was a crowd to entertain, it was overwhelming in a good way, and i really, really enjoyed it. i continued working for the grizzlies for the 2012-2013 season, and out of happenstance, the same job opened up for the san francisco giants. i applied, not knowing if i would get it, but i would kick myself if i didn't apply. i was so nervous, i never lived
11:27 am
anywhere outside of fridays fridays -- fresno, and i got an interview. and then, i got a second interview, and i got more nervous because know the thought of leaving fresno and my family and friends was scary, but this opportunity was on the other side. but i had to try, and lo and behold, i got the job, and my first day was january 14, 2014. every game day was a puzzle, and i have to figure out how to put the pieces together. i have two features that are 30 seconds long or a minute and a 30 feature. it's fun to put that al together and then lay that out in a way that is entertaining for the fans. a lucky seat there and there, and then, some lucky games that include players. and then i'll talk to lucille,
11:28 am
can you take the shirt gun to the bleachers. i just organize it from top to bottom, and it's just fun for me. something, we don't know how it's going to go, and it can be a huge hit, but you've got to try it. or if it fails, you just won't do it again. or you tweak it. when that all pans out, you go oh, we did that. we did that as a team. i have a great team. we all gel well together. it keeps the show going. the fans are here to see the teams, but also to be entertained, and that's our job. i have wonderful female role models that i look up to here at the giants, and they've been great mentors for me, so i aspire to be like them one day.
11:29 am
renelle is the best. she's all about women in the workforce, she's always in our corner. [applause] >> i enjoy how progressive the giants are. we have had the longer running until they secure day. we've been doing lgbt night longer than most teams. i enjoy that i work for an organization who supports that and is all inclusive. that means a lot to me, and i wouldn't have it any other way. i wasn't sure i was going to get this job, but i went for it, and i got it, and my first season, we won a world series even if we hadn't have won or gone all the way, i still would have learned. i've grown more in the past four years professionally than i think i've grown in my entire
11:30 am
adult life, so it's been eye opening and a wonderful learning >> hello everyone. i'm san francisco mayor london breed and i'm really happy to join you all today. can we believe that it's been over a year now since we've been living in the new world of the covid-19 pandemic. and i know that i'm smiling right now and it has everything to do with the fact that all of what we've done and everything that we've talked about in the past in terms of where we need to get to, we're finally
11:31 am
getting there. and so today, as a result of the work from our governor and the state, today is the first official day for those who are over the age of 50 can actually get the vaccine. we've announced before, people over the age of 65, emergency workers, restaurant workers, public safety personnel, essential workers, grocery store clerks, muni drivers and others are still eligible. but we are now adding an additional group to the eligibility pool. here in san francisco, our efforts have been really incredible and dr. colfax will talk a little bit more about that. but at least 45% of san franciscans have received their first dose. and over 62% of those over the age of 65 have received their
11:32 am
second dose as well, they're fully vaccinated. this is higher than the national and state average. san francisco is doing an incredible job with vaccinating people and some of you probably have seen some of the reports that suggest san franciscans in general are those who most likely want the vaccine. that's why our efforts have been so successful. and, yes, we know it's been challenging with certain communities and we knew that if we didn't embed equity in our outreach efforts to address this pandemic from day one with testing and resources, but also with the vaccine, then we wouldn't be where we are today. this is why in neighborhoods like the bayviewpoint and other places where we are seeing high rates of infection. this is why we have set up
11:33 am
pop-up and mobile sites and locations in those neighborhoods and have made it easy for people to access vaccines without an appointment because we knew that was going to be critical to getting those who are a little hesitant about getting the vaccine. it would prevent them from doing it. we knew that especially many of our seniors didn't have access to the internet and may not understand how to use a computer and it was important to make it easy for them to access the vaccine. and our partnership with people like annie chung who you will hear from in a moment with the seniors, the large senior population we have in chinatown and the work she's done and the outreach she has made to reach those seniors. meeting people where they are and putting equity at the
11:34 am
forefront of everything we do is why san francisco has been a leader, not just in the number of case rates and the number of deaths in our very dense city, but a leader on rolling out the vaccine and getting people back to the lives that we know and love. but we're still not there. we expect by this weekend we'll be at 50% of san franciscans vaccinated. and, by mid may, we expect to be at 80%. so we're moving right along, but we also have to remind ourselves that this is not over. we are still in a pandemic. we still need to be cautious around others, wearing our mask, socially distanced and following the health guidelines in a way that's going to keep us safe and keep our numbers
11:35 am
down. we have about twenty people in the hospital right now. one of the lowest numbers we've experienced since this pandemic. we should be proud of what we've been able to accomplish in this city and i can't wait until we're at that point where we are able to socialize without masks. where we are able to go back to events. and that time is coming sooner rather than later. next friday is opening day. the san francisco giants opening day. and although they are limited in the number of people that they will be able to allow in the ball park, they work with our department of public health to come up with a plan to keep people who are in the ball park safe as they buy concessions and go to the restrooms and interact with one another. they're limiting the number of people who can come to the ball park. you have to have proof of a vaccination or proof that
11:36 am
you've been tested within a certain time period, but you know what, that's better than not having opening day allow fans at all. so there will be fans, there will be games. we will see this city start to come alive again one day at a time on this beautiful sunny day where the temperature is expected to be over 82 degrees. let's not get too comfortable because i know most of us are going to want to go hang out in our parks and enjoy the outdoors on this beautiful day in san francisco, but we still need to be mindful. we're still in the pandemic, and if we want more days like this, if we want more opportunities to open more things in our city, it still requires each and every one of us to do our part. now this sunday is easter sunday. and, i don't know about you, but easter is one of my favorite holidays because what
11:37 am
it means is that spring is here. and, when i was growing up, we got to wear our hats and new dresses and that's when we got our new outfits. it was always easter sunday. i look forward to coming together with my family and my community. and this year is going to be a little bit different. so i want to ask you all to be very careful. i know that a lot of you may want to have events and gatherings and so one of the things that dr. colfax will talk about or the guidelines in what we suggest you to do in order to safely gather with friends and family because we don't want you to do what you might of typically done. we want you to do what's safe to do so that we can continue to get out of this pandemic. with that, i want to introduce dr. grant colfax. >> thank you.
11:38 am
hi everybody. and thank you, mayor breed for your ongoing leadership in this unprecedented time. i'm delighted today that we're able to make vaccines available for all san franciscans ages 50 and over. with this expansion and eligibility, thousands of san franciscans will be able to get protection from covid, begin to safely interact with vaccinated loved ones, contribute to our collective effort to vaccinate the entire city, to achieve herd immunity, and allow us to more safely open our economy. this expansion and eligibility comes as we are very close to reaching the milestone of 50% of our adult population having received at least one dose of the vaccine.
11:39 am
and, for our residents 65 and over who we know are most at risk for complications, hospitalizations and dying from covid-19, an impressive 82% have received at least one dose and 62% are now fully vaccinated. as a city overall, we are doing much better at slowing the spread of this virus. at the peak of our surge, earlier this year, we were averaging 370 new cases a day. as of last week, that number was down to 33. so i am optimistic for our future, but we also still need to be realistic about where things stand today. by no means are we out of the woods yet and cases in san francisco have slowly started to climb again. now we're still at a low rate,
11:40 am
but just in the last week, we've seen an increase of 20% in our case rate. this is not unexpected. we know as cities re-open including in san francisco, cases gradually go up. the virus is again spreading, so we must be vigilant in wearing masks, social distancing, and following the precautions that we know slows the spread. after all, together we have beaten back three surges. and i know we do not want to see a significant fourth surge here. we are seeing alarming conditions in other parts of the country. as you know, the cdc director and other health care experts are worried. that is why it's so important for us to fully immunize our city. until we reach that all-important herd immunity, the virus will always have the possibility of surging again.
11:41 am
and, of course, variants remain a concern. they are here in the bay area and we must remain vigilant. and though the state's expanded eligibility comes as welcome news and i'm grateful for this, we still don't have enough vaccine supply. our ability to serve all those who are eligible depends on that supply and we don't have enough supply yet. so we are ready to go when those vaccines come. we have the infrastructure in place to vaccinate at least 20,000 san franciscans a day. we are ready to get those vaccine into arms, we just don't have the vaccine. and, if we have sufficient supply to achieve our capacity, we could have over 80% of adults vaccinated with first doses by mid may. now, although the state does now currently allow for fully vaccinated individuals to
11:42 am
interact indoors with fully vaccinated people from other households without masks, the san francisco health department agrees with the cdc around small private indoor social gatherings. once the state allows us, and we're hopeful the state will follow the cdc guidelines very soon because they are based in science and evidence and give people fully vaccinated a chance to engage with others in a way we haven't been able to do so for over a year, we will loosen restrictions so that vaccinated individuals can safely interact indoors and small gatherings unmasked with other household members that are also fully vaccinate or otherwise low risk single households. this is yet another reason to get vaccinated. i have to also include a reminder in this, that even if you get vaccinated and are fully vaccinated, if you get
11:43 am
symptoms or are exposed to somebody with covid-19, please get tested. testing remains a key cornerstone to our ability to slow the spread of the virus. these vaccines are excellent and safe, but they aren't perfect. as we expand eligibility to more san franciscans, our admission is to bring vaccines to those communities most impacted by covid-19. and, therefore, we will continue to prioritize equitable distribution throughout the city. one great example of how we can do this is through our mobile vaccination teams and tomorrow alone, we will be conducting vaccinations at the white house for the blind and at ping u.n. housing site in chinatown. still using our shelter-in-place in town. today i was at next door shelter where i have a clinic and it was amazing to be able
11:44 am
to take patients i was see right over to the mobile vaccine team getting vaccine to arms in realtime. as we gradually move forward in the opening of our city, we will do so carefully. we will make sure that as we loosen restrictions to support businesses, bring back jobs, and restore the vibrancy of the city. we are on the right path, we are making great progress. thank you. keep the mask on. stay strong. get vaccinated when you're eligible and it's your turn and let's hope that vaccine supply to improve. thank you. >> thank you, dr. colfax. and now i want to introduce annie chung with self-help for the elderly. thank you so much for being here today. >> good morning everyone.
11:45 am
thank you, mayor breed. and dr. grant colfax. may i thank you really the department of public health and all your teams that are working on the covid response. we feel really proud to be a community partner because every time when our community is facing challenges whether it's with testing or with the vaccines rolled out, we always feel there's someone at d.p.h. that we can go to and express our concerns and very quickly, i think mayor breed and her team have responded, you know, to our community needs. for example, back in january and february when we found that vaccines are beginning to be available, none of our seniors and none of the community who don't speak english well could navigate those sign-up sites. when we expressed the need for
11:46 am
bilingual materials, your team came up with the flyers. yet the sites were still in english. so they couldn't get the vaccines. so i think as we work closely with the response. and we feel that -- it's really important that we bring the vaccines to the community versus waiting, you know, for those diverse community who don't have the internet nor the language capacity to sign up for a vaccine appointment. so really, thank you, on behalf of all of our seniors for listening and responding to our needs. we work closely with the all-american medical group, the chinese hospital, the chinese health coalition, the ymca
11:47 am
chinatown coalition, and also cdc. so as a group, we can go around and do outreach and also education work on how important it is for our community to be vaccinated. when d.p.h. expanded the qualification considering s.r.o. residents to qualify as congregate housing, we were very happy. so as of tomorrow, you will start to see all the residents in public housing as well as s.r.o. residents in chinatown. we'll get them vaccinated very soon. we work closely with aamg doctors who are all bi-lingual. where the seniors are picking up their daily meals and right there, the community doctors also give the injections and
11:48 am
the vaccinations to our seniors. you can see the big smiles on our seniors' faces despite they were worried they would have some side effect, but because they have their own doctors during the i inoculation and they are excited they are really familiar and comfortable, so that lowered the sense of discomfort and fear. so i think that's a good model, director colfax to bring the vaccines to really where the patients and the clients are and then they get a sense that, you know, the whole city and the whole community is taken care of, their needs. we are thankful for the departments and mayor breed particularly for your team. thank you, really so much. we appreciate the efforts that you're opening up the vaccine to people from 50 years and older, but we're still concerned that there's 10% to
11:49 am
20% of seniors that are still not vaccinated. so we'll work closely with your staff to bring the vaccines to the homebound seniors as our next project. it's a labor of love, but from our experience in doing the covid response work, we're not short of volunteers. i think there are many volunteers who are willing to be drivers, volunteer doctors and helpers to bring the vaccines to the thousands of homebound seniors and persons with disabilities. so we'll work closely with you on that project. so thank you very much, mayor and dr. colfax. we need our community to be vaccinate. thank you. >> thank you, again, annie, for being here with us today and also the work that you do to take care of so many seniors
11:50 am
and i cannot wait until we're open again so i can go visit them and enjoy the entertainment and food and festivities. i know it's especially hard for some of our seniors living in isolation. so having self-help for the elderly and keep that connection with them is so critical in getting people vaccinated is so important because i know more than anything, they want to come together again. so, with that, thank you all for joining us. and, at this time, we'll take a few questions. >> the reality of people [inaudible] employment right away, what do you think of people who might get frustrated trying to navigate the system? are you concerned for the people who are eligible before this group [inaudible] now that more people are trying to sign on? >> i'm not concerned because of the efforts that we talked
11:51 am
about as far as equity because we have mobile sites. we have people who are going to certain neighborhoods where we see high infection rates who are providing the vaccine to people and so we're taking our lead from community based organizations, but we did this from the very beginning. that's why over 62% of people over the age of 65 in san francisco are vaccinated and over 80% of them have already received their first dose. that's unheard of on a national level. i'm not concerned about reaching those communities. and, keep in mind i don't think we'll ever get to 100% because there are some people who are hesitant and that's why i got the vaccine. i wanted people in the western edition where we had a lot of folks who were saying i'm not going to get the vaccine. i wanted them to see that i got it and that it's safe and that they should get it too and i
11:52 am
know there were a few people including one of my friend's mom and she said i'm only here because you're here, mayor, and i'll go ahead and get it. that's really where we are and what we're going to do. i'm not concerned because of the city's efforts and our work and the prioritizization for certain zip codes and the places where people can drop in and get the vaccine, but, you know, we're going to have more supply on top of that. so it's going to be a lot easier and it just requires people to be a little patient and we're going to get there. >> more than two weeks fully vaccinated. are you feeling any differently? >> i am smiling more, i think. i think, for me, i'm still wearing my mask and doing my part and keeping my distance. and i still -- i think it's now out of habit, but i'm looking forward to maybe before i probably would have never gone
11:53 am
to the giants opening day, but now i'll probably stop by and check it out a little bit. so i'm a little bit more comfortable, i think, going out in public. for the most part, i'm hoping we get more san franciscans vaccinated. >> [inaudible] >> yeah. i just think that it's unfortunate and it's another distraction from getting our kids back in school. i think, you know, when the grown-ups all of a sudden become the story and become the distraction and this case and many other things that have sadly happened at the school board, then it takes away from what's most important and no one person should be more important than protecting and supporting our kids and getting them back in school.
11:54 am
>> [inaudible] >> i'm not prepared to provide any updates as to where we are. i mean, this is a pending lawsuit, so we want to make sure what's appropriate to say and what isn't appropriate to say before we start talking specifically about things that we plan to do. i do know this is one of the reasons, you know, not necessarily a lawsuit, but the lack of movement by the school district is one of the reasons why we're developing this program "summer together" because we can't just wait for them to sit around and get their stuff together. we have kids struggling now. and if you think about it the achievement gap was problematic and it's gotten worse. and you think about what's going to happen to these kids if they don't get the kind of education they deserve to get within the next couple of years, then we're going to have
11:55 am
a problems. i'm focusing on what they're going to do. the kids will have the ability to participate in a program that will help with the learning loss that they i'm sure experienced over the course of this past year during the pandemic >> [inaudible] >> as i said, i am not prepared to talk about that at this time. i want to make sure that i understand the legalities. it just happened yesterday. so before i make any public statements or comments, i want to make sure i understand fully what this could mean and what the city can do to participate or be involved in this in any kind of way. it is a lawsuit that's geared towards specific members and the school district and we know that the school district is its own entity. we also know that the city stands ready and willing to help to support our kids in any
11:56 am
way we possibly can. and, as i said, this is another, you know, unfortunate failure of, you know, a particular individual in this case as it relates to our children. if you really care about kids, then there are things you just will do or will not do to impact their lives and i think it's unfortunate we're at this state of affairs. >> [inaudible] >> well, the appetite, you mean of the people once folks are in a better place of being vaccinated? well, i know that most people are going to want to come
11:57 am
together with people that they may have not been able to come together with before especially those who have elderly parents. i'm hearing a lot about people who had babies and they wanted the babies to meet their grandparents. and so i'm seeing a lot more of that where people are feeling a lot more comfortable and less afraid of possibly having an impact on someone who is more vulnerable. i think that people are going to want to get together more. i want to go see a play or a concert or -- i'll take anything at this point, but i'm going to be more interested in doing things that we haven't been able to do as a result of this pandemic. i'm looking forward to seeing people singing. like, right now, there's a prohibition right now on those who can go out and entertainment, there's some limitations here because we are still in this, but we have to proceed with caution because the last thing i want to do is come to the people of san
11:58 am
francisco and say, yes, we're at 80%, first vaccinations of all san franciscans, but, guess what, we're seeing a surge and i have to shut the city down again. like that's the last thing i want us to do. so i think we're still going to need to proceed with caution. we're going to have to ride this wave and continue to do our very best. >> [inaudible] >> i can't hear you at all. i'm sorry. >> [inaudible] >> the advice to find an appointment for the seniors? we're going to be doing a lot of outreach not just with self-help for the elderly, but we have aging and adult services. a lot of our programs to be able to identify seniors in those hardest hit communities through outreach and the various programs we fund and offering, you know, rides to
11:59 am
seniors and letting them know about the specific locations and being able to walk with the seniors and i'll give you an example. so maxine hall where i got my vaccine in the wherein district location. you don't need maxine hall. so folks that are part of an organization of seniors like people at the senior service center there are people there who offered to walk them or use the vans to drive them around the corner if they want to get their vaccine are canning them every single day and there's just another of organic outreach everett that's happening with a number of agencies that serve senior communities throughout san francisco. >> i was going to ask more about the following [inaudible] >> okay. anything else?
12:00 pm
>> [inaudible] >> i can commit to san francisco's what? >> you can commit [inaudible] >> no. i can't commit that. all right. thank you. >> i love teaching. it is such an exhilarating experience when people began to feel their own creativity. >> this really is a place where all people can come and take a class and fill part of the
12:01 pm
community. this is very enriching as an artist. a lot of folks take these classes and take their digital imagery and turn it into negatives. >> there are not many black and white darkrooms available anymore. that is a really big draw. >> this is a signature piece. this is the bill largest darkroom in the u.s.. >> there are a lot of people that want to get into that dark room. >> i think it is the heart of this place. you feel it when you come in. >> the people who just started taking pictures, so this is really an intersection for many generations of photographers and this is a great place to learn
12:02 pm
because if you need people from different areas and also everyone who works here is working in photography. >> we get to build the community here. this is different. first of all, this is a great location. it is in a less-populated area. >> of lot of people come here just so that they can participate in this program. it is a great opportunity for people who have a little bit of
12:03 pm
photographic experience. the people have a lot, they can really come together and share a love and a passion. >> we offer everything from traditional black and white darkrooms to learning how to process your first roll of film. we offer classes and workshops in digital camera, digital printing. we offer classes basically in the shooting, ton the town at night, treasure island. there is a way for the programs exploring everyone who would like to spend the day on this program. >> hello, my name is jennifer. >> my name is simone.
12:04 pm
we are going on a field trip to take pictures up the hill. >> c'mon, c'mon, c'mon. >> actually, i have been here a lot. i have never looked closely enough to see everything. now, i get to take pictures. >> we want to try to get them to be more creative with it. we let them to be free with them but at the same time, we give them a little bit of direction. >> you can focus in here. >> that was cool. >> if you see that? >> behind the city, behind the houses, behind those hills.
12:05 pm
the see any more hills? >> these kids are wonderful. they get to explore, they get to see different things. >> we let them explore a little bit. they get their best. if their parents ever ask, we can learn -- they can say that they learned about the depth of field or the rule of thirds or that the shadows can give a good contrast. some of the things they come up with are fantastic. that is what we're trying to encourage. these kids can bring up the creativity and also the love for photography. >> a lot of people come into my classes and they don't feel like they really are creative and
12:06 pm
through the process of working and showing them and giving them some tips and ideas. >> this is kind of the best kept secret. you should come on and take a class. we have orientations on most saturdays. this is a really wonderful location and is the real jewel to the community. >> ready to develop your photography skills? the harvey milk photo center focuses on adult classes. and saturday workshops expose youth and adults to photography classes. >> announcer: you're watching
12:07 pm
"coping with covid-19." today's special guest is dr. steven getnick. >> hi, i'm chris man us and you're watching "coping with covid-19." today my guest is the director of the behavior therapy center of san francisco and professor emeritus in counseling psychology at the university of san francisco. doctor, welcome to the show. >> thank you. >> let's talk about managing anxieties during this pandemic. what types of issues are people facing at the moment? >> there are a number of issues and i really want to point out that this is affecting everyone and has come on very quickly. so it is normal. if you are not experiencing some anxiety, something is a touch off because this affects us all. i think some of the main ones are our health and worried about getting the virus and our developing serious complications.
12:08 pm
i think for a lot of people who are single, living alone, in isolation, has been very difficult. i think being in close quarters with people who we normally have some space from now are together 24/7. that's produced a lot of stress and anxiety. that loss of connection with others. we already addressed. and having kids home. for a lot of people. >> yes, absolutely. what are the other problems that they might have? >> i think without that dynamic, the good things are not a problem. it is the difficulties we have. and when we're together 24/7, again it's like hooking everything up to an amplifier. >> so, what kind of problems
12:09 pm
could be created from working home from home, perhaps for the first time in your career? >> a lot of people are not used to working at home and a working at home just isn't the same. for one thing, there is a lack of social interaction. some people find that that affects them greatly. some people are actually finding they're getting more work done at home without distractions from work. the lack of structure is probably the most common. we see it here with work at the office. people are kind of watching. we know that our schedule is, suddenly you're at home and you are on your own. >> absolutely. if those are some of the issues people are facing, what are some of the techniques people can use to overcome their anxiety? >> caller: i think there are many. one of the first is how managing and keeping track of your thinking, we think and talk to ourselves a lot. that's normal.
12:10 pm
we have a dialogue with ourselves often and we need to monitor that a bit. people tend to ruminate versus problem-solve. that is they tend to worry about all the things that might go wrong. and what i suggest is, look, there are things that can go wrong, but ruminating about the worst-case scenario is not going to be very productive. sit down, figure out what the things are that you have to deal with and try to problem-solve. i think any of the self-control techniques for anxiety can be helpful. and there are dozens of them. the common ones are meditation, relaxation techniques, yoga, for example and another is diaphragmattic breathing. if you google that, you can
12:11 pm
learn diaphragmattic breathing in about 10 minutes online. it's incredibly simple and it is a really nice way to reduce anxiety in the moment. self-control procedures, exercise. whether if you're fortunate enough to have equipment at home, that's great. if you're not, get outside and go for a walk, keep your safe distance, of course. but you need to be active. that's helpful. >> i think people marry be dealing with information overload at the moment. how do you suggest people manage that? >> i was just going to say that. i think it is really important to kind of limit the information you get. not in terms of accuracy. i think in terms of accuracy, you want to identify a few sites where people are coming with evidence-based information and scientific information so you can form yourself well. once you've informed yourself, you need to not be watching all
12:12 pm
day long. i've talked to people who are mesmerized from the tv and a it keeps that anxiety going so you need to limit your viewing for sure. this can be stress for people who have economic concerns and worried about their family and friends and loved ones who are essential workers. what would you suggest they do to help manage anxiety and stress? >> there is a number of things. one of major ones for depression is behavioral activation. simply, it really means that people will tend to not be depressed as a number of reinforcing activities to engage in. whether it is hobbies, you read, you listen to music, you crochet, you -- whatever. these kinds of things are very important so you want to make sure that you're engaging in
12:13 pm
activities that literally make you feel better as opposed to sitting around ruminating, worrying about the worst-case scenarios that might happen. >> what about trying to do some self-development? >> yeah. it's a very interesting time. i've talked to a couple of my own clients who are finding, in a very positive way, that this isolation, while at first can generate a lot of anxiety, particularly if you're just not good at living alone. for a number of people, it's giving them a chance to sit back and really think about what is important in their lives, what are the priorities. i think that maybe if there is any silver lining in this epidemic, it's really forcing all of us to kind of rethink what's really important. >> indeed. you know, though, at the same time, there are people who are feeling very lonely at home. how would you encourage them to overcome that? >> you get online.
12:14 pm
facetime, skype, zoom, like what we're doing right now. you can stay connected. it's very possible. most connections are important. we are social critters and we need that connection. i think for people who don't have those options, pull up photos, take a look at pictures of family. you need to stay connected. and it's very important. >> and finally, do you have any suggestions that are specifically for families? >> yeah. well, again, i think one of the interesting things that's come about from all of this, is i talked to families on video is they're obviously spending more time together. while it's a bit awkward, particularly for parents who are in the house working a lot. it's a chance to really deepen relationships and spend more good, quality time together. i think parents really need to step back and kind of plan
12:15 pm
their day a little bit. not micro manage it, but have some ideas. can the family play games together? a lot of people i talked to, they're even together as a family for the first time. so i think there are a number of things that people can do. i think it is qulaouzful for the families to take five, 10 minutes and say how did the day go? i talked to someone in the phone book before we started who said they noticed what time of day all their anxiety kind of comes together and they start sniping at each other. now they're taking a few minutes at tend of the day to say, ok, how are we doing? >> i think they need modeling good behavior, something you can do within the family, too, to try to -- >> that's right. i think that's relevant. very relevant to how children
12:16 pm
are going to do. most of the research from crises, particularly things we can't control showed that children do as well as their parents do. so i think it is important for parents to think about how they're react aing and they stay calm because whatever they do is modeling, coping for their children. so, that can be very useful. it can also be problematic. >> when we talked earlier, you mentioned that acknowledging that your kids are afraid is important. >> yes. i think that ties to your last question. i think modeling -- you know, it's not incompatible with saying, yeah, you know, mom or dad is a little nervous, too. it means a lot of stuff is going on, but we're going to be ok. we're going to stay together. we have our time together. we're going to be safe.
12:17 pm
we'll -- fill in the blank. so you can do both. you can re-assure but in a realistic way that once the kids know it's normal to be anxious in these times. >> thank you for coming ton show, doctor. i really appreciate the time you've given us. >> you're welcome. thank you for having me. >> and that is it for this episode. we'll be back with more covid-19 related information shortly. you have been "coping with covid-19." thank you for watching. kids, n
12:18 pm
12:19 pm
terrors. we see again, across -- -- >> you're watching coping with covid-19 with chris manners. >> hi. i'm chris manners, and you're watching coping with covid-19. today, my guest is an infeshttious disease specialist and leading the covid disease tracing team for the san francisco department of public
12:20 pm
health. she's here to talk about the city's contact tracing program and how to slow the spread of the virus. doctor, welcome to the show. >> thank you so much for having me. >> can we begin by talking about when the city's contact tracing program began and what are the services? >> sure. so we began contact tracing on the first day that we had a case here in san francisco, so that was march 5 of this year. the purpose of our program is to provide comprehensive services to people who are close to and diagnosed with covid. this includes anyone who's newly diagnosed gets a phone call from our trained health professionals in which we talk more about their diagnosis, make sure that they have accurate information. we then go into understanding a little bit more about their symptoms and trying to better understand when they first may have become infectious to others. as part of that, we will then
12:21 pm
talk about anyplaces they may have visited for an extended period of time and people they were in contact with. we then seek to better understand the individuals that they were in touch with by collecting names and phone numbers so that then we can reach out to these individuals and make sure that they have the information that they need in order to quarantine and get access to immediate testing for covid. >> how does the program work? how many people are actually acting as contact tracers, and what do they do? >> so we had over 100 people activated with the city to provide active contact tracing actions for san franciscans. so this team is highly trained in being able to provide everyone diagnosed with covid with information about what this means to them and make sure that they know the resources that are available to them so that they can safely
12:22 pm
isolate. this team then also has worked with several social workers as well as other city departments to make sure that this individual has wraparound services in order to complete their isolation in quarantine. in general, we have staff that represents all diverse backgrounds in san francisco, and they are also able to provide linguistically appropriate services to make sure we are able to meet the needs of the people being diagnosed. >> that's great. when we run a huge program in the mission district, what role did contact tracing play in that effort. was there anything notable? >> so previous to this pandemic, san francisco public health has been tracking communities disproportionately affected by covid-19. we provided a large community-based testing
12:23 pm
campaign in the mission. as part of this campaign, we found that while latinos made up 44% of the people who were tested, they made up 95% of people who ended up being diagnosed. we also found that 90% of the people who were diagnosed with covid-19 could not work from home, suggesting that this disease is impacting communities that may be unable to work from home or have the resources to stay at home during their shelter in place order. so as part of these activities, it's really a reflection of what we're seeing citywide in that we need to make sure that people who are at the greatest risk for covid have the resources needed in order to take time off of work as necessary, as they're diagnosed with covid. >> i think as we've seen in new york, density is a huge factor, so it makes sense that there would be quite a few cases in
12:24 pm
the mission district. >> yeah. we did find that the median size of the household was greater than three, and the majority of people who had been diagnosed with covid, so this does go back to the fact that covid is really likely to transmit within households, and we need to make sure that households have the information that they need if somebody is diagnosed with covid, and that they can appropriately cleanup, clean their spaces, and they can self-isolate, and as necessary, they have access to city funded hotel rooms where they can safely isolate or quarantine for the required period of time and reduce their risk of spreading covid to others. >> just to confirm, these tests are completely free, right? what kind of turnaround do we have? >> so fortunately, san francisco offers free testing to san franciscans who have
12:25 pm
even one symptom consistent with covid-19. what you need to know about this testing is that you have to schedule it on-line, but that you don't need any medical insurance, and you don't need a doctor's note. in addition, testing is available to all san franciscans regardless of immigration status. you'll be able to get your test results in just one to five days after getting a test, and you'll get follow up through the health department if you're found to have covid-19, including access to all of our tracing activities that i've talked about today. so if you have an opportunity to test for covid, i recommend that you go for it because it's important that we all really understand that testing is part of our new normal and a really important pillar for our fight against covid transmission here in san francisco. >> now, some communities have been responding differently to the virus. some have been asking their
12:26 pm
citizens to keep a diary so they can remember who they've seen, while others are encouraged to download an app to their phone so they can keep track of tracing. have we considered any of these steps. >> so a major part of tracing is to talk to someone about where they've been and who they've been in contact with prior to developing symptoms or on the date of their test. this requires jogging somebody's memory, and as we all know, it can be hard to recall all of the things that one has participated in days -- in the past several days. so we recommend that everyone pay attention to what they're doing as we lift our shelter in place orders, and we are carefully looking at the possibility of being able to support and being able to understand where someone may have been and who else may have been exposed to covid. but as part of that, we're
12:27 pm
keeping careful caution and doing our due diligence to ensure that people's privacy and confidentiality is maintained. this is the number one priority for us in the department of public health. we want anything that we offer through an app to be supplementing instead of replacing our currently contact tracing efforts. >> so it seems like any app-based program the city might offer would be on a strictly opt-in basis? >> absolutely. we would want people to choose whether or not they want to participate in any of these app-based programs, and it would strictly be voluntarily if they were diagnosed with covid and they wanted to share information with the department of public health and others. we really want to make sure that any app that we recommend as a department is completely confidential and maintains the highest levels of privacy, and
12:28 pm
also is able to supplement our current offering of contact tracing and not become a distraction whereby people are getting notified that don't have contacts or information that they need in order to take the appropriate next steps. >> yeah. i think it would address people's concerns if it's strictly voluntarily whether you use the app or not. so finally, what would you say to our residents is the best way to stay safe during this pandemic? >> well, i like to boil is down to a short little phrase. cover your face, test early, and trace. and what i mean by that, as well as our shelter in place restrictions, we really want people to continue into their new normal life wearing a mask. we know that this is a very protective way of preventing the spread of covid, and we want everyone to adopt this
12:29 pm
practice in their life as they move forward. we also want people to pay a lot of attention to their bodies as we begin to get back into the world as well as any symptoms that may be consistent with covid-19. fortunately, we have the tests here in san francisco to make sure that every san franciscan can access a test if they have symptoms. so if somebody is experiencing any symptoms, we want them to seek out those testing services immediately and isolate and note their results. and finally, if somebody is diagnosed with covid-19, we want to make sure that they have been paying attention to who they've been spending time with in the days prior to their symptoms or the days prior to their tests. so that includes an element of tracing your foot steps, as i like to say, and being mindful of your actions, particularly any interactions where you may
12:30 pm
not have been masked or may have been spending time with people over ten minutes and less than 6 feet apart. by keeping track of people you may have been in contact with, it'll be much easier to work with the health department and reach out to those individuals to make sure that they know that they were exposed to somebody with covid-19 and they can get the appropriate testing and quarantine so we can ongoingly reduce the risk of transmission to others. >> that's really fantastic information, doctor. i really appreciate the time you've given us today. i know you're really busy. >> yeah, i appreciate the conversation. >> thanks again. that's it for this episode of coping with covid-19. for sfgtv, i'm chris manners. th