tv Mayors Press Availability SFGTV October 25, 2020 11:35pm-12:01am PDT
so we're not just opening up the gates to playgrounds but we're also cutting ribbons on five amazing playgrounds that have just been waiting for children that have been renovated through the let's play s.f. initiative, which is is an incredible partnership between the recreation and the park department and the parks alliance, san francisco voters who support park bonds, and through let's play s.f. we're actually transforming 13 playgrounds that have been loved to death across our city and to creative places that spark imagination, connection, and healthy bodies and minds. so without further adieu it is my great pleasure to introduce our parks champion-in-chief who has been a great nudge to make this happen. thank you, mayor. >> thank you. and thank you, phil, and thank you to all of the families in san francisco for your understanding and your patience
as we deal with a very, very challenging time, one that none of us could have ever predicted. and i'm so excited to be here at mersed heights because i know how hard this community worked to get this park to be a priority. for so many years -- i see mary harris over there shaking her head hard. for so many years, and a lot of the people in this community, they have been fighting to make sure that this part of town receives the support and the attention that it deserves. there are families here and there are generations of kids growing up in this neighborhood and in this community. and they deserved the opportunity to make sure that we rebuild the library, which your supervisor is pushing for. that we rebuild the parks and all of the other amenities that make life so great in san
francisco. and here we are, because i'll tell you, supervisor, not too long ago i know that we came here, and we cut the ribbon -- or we broke the ground -- and this happened really fast. this is pretty amazing. and, you know, to make a park like this to happen, and it is absolutely beautiful! it is so amazing. and i am so happy that today finally kids will be able to play in playgrounds all over san francisco. this is amazing. and i'll tell you that the reason why i'm so happy, because it is hard for children right now. you know, our private schools have opened and our public schools haven't. kids are not in school and they're in front of a screen on a regular basis. and that is not good for them. we know that it's not good for them. it's why i have been putting, of course, as much pressure as i can on the public to do our part
to wear our masks and to wash our hands and to socially distance ourselves, and as much as we want to be around each other we have to make sacrifices for our children. so that they can go back to school, so they can play in playgrounds, so they can have a well-rounded life, because just imagine -- this is hard on us as adults. just imagine how much harder it is on kids. how tough it is, and how we are seeing even now -- even though we're providing devices and internet and other resources to kids, the achievement gap is still growing wide. so we have a lot of work to do. and that's why today is so amazing. and it's so exciting. because it's not just that we're opening up all of these playgrounds, we have renovated a number of playgrounds in san francisco, and so kids are going
to have an opportunity to just enjoy something new and exciting in the city. i am excited and i'm grateful to you, phil, and i'm grateful to the parks alliance and the let's play initiative and all of the friends of mersed heights, you will hear from some community members here today, because this work happened because of this community. this work happened because you had an incredible leader in supervisor safai. so with strong leadership, with strong community support, with collaboration and with years -- wait -- decades of advocacy, you have made something incredible happen for the kids of this community, for the kids who are part of this learning hub, who are hoping that this press conference is over as quick as possible so they can come and play in this playground. in fact, it won't bother me if they play on the playground
during this conference, just let them have a good time. because that's where we are now. and what this also does is that it gives us hope. it gives us hope that the time that we've spent in isolation, the time that we have spent, you know, doing what we needed to do during this pandemic, we know that there's a light at the end of the tunnel. we know that good things can happen if we all do our part. and so i really, really, really want to thank all of you so much for being here, so much for continuing to support our parks and the bonds that the voters have always voted to support because that's how this happens. and it is amazing, and it's a beautiful day, and, supervisor, you should be so proud of what you have been able to accomplish for this community, unlike never before, and we are so grateful for your strong advocacy and leadership. and, ladies and gentlemen, i want to introduce the district 11 supervisor, supervisor safai.
[applause] >> thank you, madam mayor. this day is super special. i'll just say that. when i first started working in this community, the mantra was, why are we always treated like the forgotten part of san francisco? why are we not getting our fair share? why are the working people -- why are the hard-working people that get up and make this city run every day treated like this? and if you saw this playground, if you saw this fence, right, phil, it looked like a prison yard fence. it looked like something that you would never want to bring your family to. the same at mersed -- excuse me, allis-chalmers that is open today. and they used to ride by that to say look at how awful this park is, will you please give us money, because down the street
was daily city and it was shining. but i can say with full confidence that this community fought hard, this community advocated and never gave up. i want to give a special shoutout to renard menro, working here tirelessly on a little island by himself, using every little resource he has, going into his own pockets often, to make sure that this community had something. i want to thank miss wilma gardner, she couldn't join us today and she lives right across the street there and said i want to see this park rebuilt before i die. that's what she told me when i met her years ago. and i'm sorry that she couldn't be here today. there's a lot of people that couldn't actually physically be here, but all of their blood, sweat and tears went into this. i want to thank phil ginsburg and his staff. they have made a commitment to ensuring that the neighborhoods that have the most children, like ours, under the age of 18
get their fair share. and all of their hard-working staff. and i want to especially thank miss mayor, madam, london breed, because every single thing -- now don't get jealous of the supervisors -- every single thing that i have brought to her to talk about this community she has said, yes. when we asked her for a new library, she said, yes. when we asked her for a new job center, she funded that and we opened that up a year ago to this day. when we said three years ago -- not recently -- but three years ago when we said that the african american community is hurting she said, asha, you don't need to tell me, i know. and i said we're investing in this, and she said, yes. so this is one big step forward and i want to thank all of the people that have been involved in this, and all of the people that have dedicated themselves to this, and to all of the children and families that will enjoy this for many, many years
to come. this is a new day in district 11, thank you very much. [applause] >> thank you, supervisor safai. the mayor and the supervisor, you know, eloquently articulated the importance of this moment. playgrounds are happy, they're joyous, but for children and their development and their social and emotional development and their ability to problem solve and the ability to take risks and the ability to share and to collaborate, this is really serious stuff to get kids back on our playgrounds again. i think that the mayor said it, that kids have taken it on the chin a little bit during this pandemic, let's be honest. and i'm grateful to the mayor and to supervisor safai and the community for screaming out on behalf of our children. we have to now do the right thing. playgrounds are open. we need to keep our kids safe and our families safe. so, please -- yes, there are rules and there are capacity
limits. there are -- we are supposed to continue to social distance and continue to wear a mask, right? do not eat and drink in these spaces. let's all do the right things so that our children and san francisco families can be healthy. so the last point they want to make before bringing up our next speaker -- yes, thank you, mayor. okay, do not -- if you are a parent, when you bring your kid to a playground, do not do this -- pay attention. no cellphone. pay attention to where your kids are and how they're engaging on these spaces. again, the goal here is only to allow our kids to have the freedom to play and to do it in a healthy way. one last point which is that this should be a reminder as both the mayor and supervisor safai mentioned about the importance of investing in our parks. san francisco has the best park system in the united states of america. it is 150 years old. but we have to continue to
invest in it, continue to nurture in it so we no longer have fences that look like jails and playgrounds that aren't deserving of the children who use them. so i want to thank all san francisco voters for supporting the 2012 clean and safe neighborhoods park fund, without which we would not be here today. our most important partner in all of this are our friends at the department of public health who have as a tough a job as anybody right now in trying to figure out how to allow us to safely resume some sense of normalcy. and i am incredibly grateful to dr. colfax and dr. aragon and their team for working with us and truly understanding the importance and the urgency of opening up playgrounds. so dr. colfax, the mic is yours. >> well, thank you, director ginsburg, and really to acknowledge our gratitude to
mayor breed, supervisors safai, director su, and mr. robert ellis for their leadership in this work. you know that there's been so many challenging days during this pandemic. and so many sad days. and this is such a day of gratitude and beauty. look out it here, and look at the kids playing. this is a pivotal moment as we work together to slow the spread of covid and realize that our children must go back to doing the things that we know that are important for their health and their family's health and the communities' health. the reopening of the playgrounds is an opportunity to get our kids back something that we haven't done since march, march. incredible. we at the health department are so happy to be here as we have worked to get san francisco to this place. to back to where kids can get in an environment where they can
thrive, starting with school programs, community hubs, and elementary schools, step-by-step, and now playgrounds. we have made tremendous progress as a city. and we know that the sacrifice and the dedications of our families and our communities have made the contributions that have succeeded in slowing the spread of covid-19 virus. and i thank you. we thank you. and we want all of our children -- all of our children -- to continue to enjoy the reopening of activities. and so parents, we need your help in ensuring that we open playgrounds as safely as possible. when visiting playgrounds, please be sure that your family follows the health and safety rules for playground visitors. prepare your family for less children and for socially distanced fun.
and i wouldn't be doing my job, you know what comes next, if i wouldn't remind people to, please, wear a face covering. they are required for all playground visitors, aged 2 and over. please limit your stay to 30 minutes when other households are present, so that other people can also enjoy the playground. and, please, practice that good hygiene. and although playgrounds are outdoors, we still want to be cautious. we need everyone's help in sustaining our gain and the progress that we have made. so let's have fun today. let's take advantage of these beautiful seasonal days that we have in san francisco, and, again, thank you mayor breed, supervisor safai and director ginsburg for your partnership and work. and everyone, let's continue to play it safe. thank you. [applause] >> thank you, dr. colfax. so we're now going to hear from two important community members that have fought for children
and for families in this neighborhood. our first speaker, renard monroe, the executive director of youth first. you've been amazing. thank you for your partnership in our community hub program. i want to acknowledge executive director, dr. mariea su, my partner in crime and all things kids and families. but, ménard, you are running a model program and you're doing it for kids who really need the support. and we're so grateful to you for your help in keeping these spaces safe and clean. please come up and say a few words. [applause] >> good afternoon. this is a bittersweet moment for us as a community, because there are some people before ménard who really put in some hard work to make sure that we have this space for the children and our community.
and i need to acknowledge a few people who didn't make it to see this day. our neighbor, she lived right there, her name was karen mccoy. [applause] she fought and she fought and she had phil's number on speed dial trying to get this place renovated. she didn't make it to see it, she passed away and i'm thankful for her and her daughter, they both passed away. they fought for this park and i'm appreciative of that. and delores, who is also a resident fought for this park. and mary harris and al harris, okay, a lot of people put in -- wilma gardner, a lot of people have been fighting to make sure that this community gets what it needs. i'm just happy to be part of the process and i'm thankful for today and i'm thankful for our mayor to allocate the funds and phil ginsburg, he's been
awesome. it's been awesome. and i appreciate you. he comes out the first day they put this together and went down the slide with the kids and impressed the kids. it's just one of those things where san francisco is supposed to be about community. and these type of events are so important, especially in a times that we're living in and the covid-19. i definitely want to thank our supervisor safai. [applause] for all of his hard work and pushing for our district to make sure that we can have spaces like this. also i want to thank our community as a whole, first and foremost. our residents right here, up and down the street. using this park every day, and we're so happy to have it back open, to have our kids back playing safely and in an environment, and something to be proud of. i'm proud of our district. i'm proud of where we're going. okay, we have organizations and c.b.o.s who are really making a push for this district to get
the resources allocated here. and all of the things that we are doing just to make sure that the community gets what it needs and to make sure that children have a future. so, thank you. [applause] >> thank you, renard. so another community leader that had my phone number on speed dial, my phone number, my email and my twitter and my telegraph handle was edna james. and edna couldn't be here today, but she has asked one of her closest community partners to come up and to say a few words. robert ellis. robert is the vice president of the o.m.i. community action organization and a member of the friends of mersed heights playground, and to say a few words about the power of community when it comes to getting things done. robert, the microphone is yours.
>> hi, i wish i had been first. all of these accolades have been handed out and it's well deserved. and i want to thank our mayor breed for all of her dedication, all of her dedication to the city. and not only she is smart, but she's pretty. so that's a good thing. like i say, i want to thank phil definitely -- if you stand here and you look around you can see the transformation of this park and the future is still bright. i have been on di dixie street r the last 50 years and i have seen the park deteriorate and now it's like a phoenix rising from the sun. so you see that it's bringing a whole new atmosphere to the community. not only for the children, but
also for the adults and for everybody in the community and the city. and i'm certainly glad to be a part of it and i want to apologize -- not apologize, but i want to give my regrets to miss james, the well documented partner was unable to be here today. so i want to thank everyone that invited me and phil and just say, phil, you're doing a wonderful job. keep up the good work. and god bless you. thank you. >> just a few quick acknowledgements and then we're going to wrap up and if there are any questions you have a few people here who might be able to answer them. just a couple of questions. but i i want to recognize through the san francisco park alliance that without the san francisco park alliance, make no mistake that we would not be renovating or ribbon cutting
five new playgrounds. their partnership is invaluable and they lead with their heart and they care about the parks. thank you, san francisco park alliance. [applause] and then last to my own team, lisa brampton, lisa, thank you for all that you have done to bring private resources to help to supplement what the voters have done to allow us to renovate these playgrounds. to our park supervisor, brandon young bright and early here, mayor, making sure that this place looked super clean. so, thank you, brandon, for being here. and to dan mauer, our project manager for this particular project, and to all of the rec and park staff who really had to hustle to make sure that you can see these markings on the ground and you can see all of the signs in the last 36 hours we have put out maybe 750 signs and have marked playgrounds and, yeah, my staff always rises to the
. >> madam secretary, will you please begin by calling the roll? >> clerk: yes. today is wednesday, october 23, 2020, and this is the regular meeting of the abatement appeals board. the first item is roll call. [roll call] >> clerk: okay. we have a quorum, and the next item is item b, the oath. will all
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