Once upon a time … in a reality far, far away … Amy D.C. Brownell, PE, a licensed professional engineer with the Environmental Division of the San Francisco Department of Public Health (DPH), accepted the mandate to protect human health and the environment as a permanent regulator seated on the Restoration Advisory Board (RAB) of the Hunters Point Shipyard, a federal Superfund site. RABs are democratically elected bodies created by Congress to empower community stakeholders with the opportunity to direct the cleanup and reuse of former military installations.
In “Pseudo,” the Turner brothers, Justen, 15, and Julien, 19, creatively make a political comparison between the police unjustifiably preying on Black people and Blacks in the hood preying on white people. Although I think there has to be a wider discussion about power, white supremacy, capitalism and systematic domination, “Pseudo” is definitely a conversation starter.
While a graduate student in ethnic studies, Alicia Garza co-founded Black Lives Matter, an international organization that began in 2013 to fight violence and racism toward Black people. The organization began after the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the shooting death of teenager Trayvon Martin in Florida. It has since grown to an international network of more than 40 chapters across North America and the United Kingdom.
The New York Times sent Gary Rivlin to Baton Rouge and New Orleans, days after the storm, to cover Katrina as an outsider. Rivlin’s instincts had him looking forward “to the mess ahead. Eventually the flood waters would recede. How would New Orleans go about the complicated task of rebuilding?” This carefully researched, beautifully written book describes that process from then until now.
Because the Democrats joined the Republicans in allowing the sequestration budget cuts to continue in the latest political deal known as a “continuing resolution” that ended the government shutdown on Oct. 16, it appears to be a very grim situation for Section 8 voucher holders in cities all across the nation. Housing officials claim that 140,000 voucher holders are at risk of losing their vouchers because of the sequestration budget cuts.
“The implementation of the Local Hiring Policy for Construction has provided economic and employment opportunities for San Francisco residents,” said Supervisor Avalos. “I look forward to continuing and expanding our partnerships to advance the program to provide good paying jobs to San Franciscans and maximize opportunities for local residents.”
Low and moderate income youth in San Francisco age 5 to 17 will be able to ride Muni for free as of March 1, when the SFMTA will begin a 16-month pilot program. Thousands of youth, parents and community members have organized for more than two years to secure the free transit passes, which enable young people to get to school, jobs and after-school activities.
With a banner reading “From the Mission District to the whole Bay Area – Stop Racist Police Brutality,” over 300 community members rallied against the most recent case of police violence in San Francisco. The event was prompted by a video that became widespread showing 18-year-old City College student Kevin Clark being brutalized by two San Francisco police officers.
Dozens of parents and youth advocates testified before the San Francisco Board of Supervisors Government Audits and Oversight Committee supporting Municipal Transportation Agency Director Ed Reiskin’s proposal to apply recently awarded regional funds to implement the free Muni for youth pilot program. The MTA board will vote on this proposal Dec. 4.
The Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) is scheduled to consider a new funding option for Free Muni for Youth when it meets on Wednesday, Oct. 24, at its Oakland headquarters, 101 Eighth St., at 10:30 a.m. Youth pass advocates will hold a brief press conference in front of the MTC building immediately following the commission’s vote on the funding proposal.
Last night, I watched in horror alongside the rest of the world as Oakland police and 16 other police agencies from across the Bay Area fired tear gas and war grade weapons at the Occupy Wall Street movement. Now more than 50 writers have released a statement denouncing a “crackdown on free speech” by Oakland police and Mayor Jean Quan.
When police stopped a teenager stepping off the T-train yesterday to show his transfer as proof he’d paid his fare – $2 at most – he ran from them. They shot him as many as 10 times in the back and neck, according to witnesses. For many long minutes, as a crowd watched in horror, the boy, who had fallen to the sidewalk a block away, lay in a quickly growing pool of blood writhing in pain and trying to lift himself up as the cops trained their guns on him and threatened bystanders. Come to the press conference and speakout Monday, July 18, noon, at Third & Oakdale, San Francisco.
In a victory for Bayview Hunters Point community and environmental justice groups, a Superior Court judge ruled today that the City of San Francisco’s redevelopment plan for the former Hunters Point Naval Shipyard failed to properly evaluate the environmental and health risks by allowing the Navy to transfer ownership of the contaminated Superfund site before the cleanup of the area was complete.
While Assemblymember Jerry Hill and his controversial anti-local hiring bill AB 356 were busy drawing statewide opposition, the counties of San Francisco and San Mateo were calmly settling their differences for the betterment of workers in both jurisdictions. “There has been one positive thing resulting from the AB 356 debate: It has united leaders and communities all over the state to say that local hire is crucial to economic recovery,” said Greenlining Institute general counsel Samuel Kang. “Jerry Hill awoke a sleeping giant. By trying to kill local hire, he’s only made it stronger.”
The decades-long fight by Bayview Hunters Point for environmental justice goes to court Thursday on whether the City of San Francisco and Lennar failed to disclose the potential health impacts of development on the toxic Hunters Point Shipyard Superfund site. Meanwhile, emails just obtained through a public records request reveal a coverup conspiracy by the SF Health Department and EPA with Lennar. Pack the courtroom Thursday, March 24, 9:30 a.m., at 400 McAllister St., Room 613, San Francisco.
Nationally acclaimed scientist Wilma Subra says, “The EIR failed to evaluate and assess the cumulative impacts of exposure to children, adults and the environment as a result of exposure to all of the chemicals present at the site.” Declared Vivien Donahue, “San Francisco is not a Green City for the environment; it is green for the money they want to give to these developers.” “We are opposed to the EIR. The shipyard needs to be cleaned up, not covered up. It is too toxic!” said Esselene Stancil, 78. Showdown at Board of Supervisors Tuesday, July 13, 3pm, City Hall Room 250. Be there!
On Feb. 18, Lennar sent an armed operative to a town hall meeting hosted by the Stop Lennar Action Movement (SLAM), featuring Wilma Subra, a world renowned scientist who was brought to San Francisco by the Environmental Protection Agency. A former police officer, the man had NO permit to carry the weapon, signed in under a false name, was taking pictures of the crowd and refused to provide correct information. RALLY MONDAY, APRIL 12, 9:30 A.M., STEPS OF SF CITY HALL! Hearing follows. Demand justice!
“How can I learn who I can be, when I don’t even know who I am? Ethnic Studies provides me the foundations to learn who I AM!” declared Monet Wilson, a Y-MAC leader at Balboa High School. The San Francisco School Board’s unanimous vote marks a victory for Ethnic Studies in high schools 40 years after the historic trail-blazing fight that brought Ethnic Studies to San Francisco State.
Tuesday, Jan. 5, at 4 p.m. in City Hall Room 416 is the FINAL hearing on the Candlestick Point-Hunters Point Shipyard EIR, a very callous, negligent and dangerous document that identifies numerous life threatening and potentially disastrous impacts to human health and the environment - most dangerous of all the potential construction activities at a federal Superfund site listed as one of the most toxic properties in the nation!
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