Mayor Lee Continues to Support San Francisco Women & Families at First Ever Bay Area Women’s Summit
Mayor Lee Pledges to Advance Women’s Equity & Opportunity at Landmark Event that Brought Together Leaders & Community
San Francisco, CA—Mayor Edwin M. Lee today announced three pledges at the Bay Area Women’s Summit that continue to build on the City’s achievements to provide opportunities to women to advance. The Mayor’s pledges include $6 million in new funding for subsidized child care and expanded implicit bias training for City staff. The pledges are part of his larger commitment over the next two years to dedicate more than $16.75 million of funding for new initiatives that support the City’s families.
The Summit served as a significant platform to engage and secure pledges from influential leaders across the Bay Area and nation to advance women’s economic empowerment, equity, and opportunity in the region and beyond. Guest speakers included Senior Advisor to President Barack Obama Valerie Jarrett, Treasurer of the United States Rosie Rios, New America President & CEO Anne-Marie Slaughter, National Domestic Workers Alliance Director Ai-jen Poo, PolicyLink President & CEO Angela Glover Blackwell.
The Summit highlighted the achievements that have already been made in San Francisco including the passing of the first in the nation legislation to guarantee parental leave, and legislation that guarantees sick leave and affordable health care. It highlighted the successful efforts to raise San Francisco’s minimum wage to one of the most progressive in the nation in order to help our working mothers and families share in the prosperity of our region. Fifty eight percent of the City and County of San Francisco government workforce are women and women in government are holding some of the highest offices including the City Administrator, Fire Chief, Department of Emergency Management Director, Health Director, Port Director, Directors for the Department of the Environment, the Department of Human Resources and many more.
In 2015, Mayor Lee called for the convening of the Bay Area Women’s Summit in an effort to encourage public and private sector initiatives that would improve economic and social opportunities for women in San Francisco and the region.
“San Francisco has long been at the forefront of social change and women’s equity, but we know we can, and must, do more to make sure our women are fully participating in our robust economy,” said Mayor Lee. “It is why I pledge to allocate $6 million dollars over the next two years to maintain and increase subsidized child care spaces for low-income women, children and families in San Francisco. I also pledge to implement online implicit bias training and sexual harassment training for City and County of San Francisco employees, prioritizing Department of Human Resources employees, hiring managers and public facing employees, and implement in-person implicit bias training for all San Francisco Police Department employees over the next two years.”
Mayor Lee has pledged to allocate $6 million dollars over the next two years to maintain and increase subsidized child care spaces for low-income women, children and families in San Francisco. The funds are also intended to support wage increases for child care workers who are predominantly women and ultimately improve the quality of child care services. Access to high-quality child care promotes a child’s development and has been proven to give children a head start in life. In more than 35 states child care costs more than college. Families below the Federal Poverty Level pay an average of 30 percent of their income in child care costs. Without help, many families can face the untenable choice of not working or leaving their children in unsafe, unstable, or poor quality child care arrangements. Mayor Lee’s pledge for subsidized child care will go into effect this summer. The Office of Early Care and Education will oversee the implementation of this initiative.
Over the next two years, Mayor Lee is investing over $16.75 million in new initiatives that support women and their families to thrive in the City:
- by improving the quality and availability of early care and education;
- spearheading an effort to help families better navigate the myriad of City children’s programs so that they can better take advantage of the services available;
- expanding summer and other afterschool programming for kids; and
- expanding services offered by family resource centers throughout the City.
Furthermore, Mayor Lee has continued to prioritize funding for Violence Against Women Prevention and Intervention. The City’s Violence Against Women (VAW) Grants Program, managed by the San Francisco Department on the Status of Women, funds 38 community-based programs that serve over 24,000 individuals, primarily women survivors of violence, with over 31,000 hours of supportive services annually. Over the next 2 years, Mayor Lee has pledged to invest $11.8 million into this program. Since taking office in 2011, Mayor Lee has grown the VAW grants budget by 112 percent, rising from $2.8 million per year to its current $5.9 million per year.
Mayor Lee encourages San Francisco’s private sector, non-profit partners and all employers in the City to join his pledge or make their own pledge to advance women’s equity, empowerment and opportunity and create a stronger economy that is more diverse, equitable and robust for women and people of color.
Mayor Lee and Mayor Schaaf co-hosted the Bay Area Women’s Summit in partnership with the Women’s Foundation of California. The Summit was held with cooperation from the White House Women’s Summit and the United Nations Foundation.
For more information on the Bay Area Women’s Summit, go to: www.bayareawomen.org.