Mayor London Breed Announces Rollout of New Staffed Public Toilets and Hand-Washing Stations in High-Need Neighborhoods
Bathroom access expanded for vulnerable populations; monitors on site to keep the temporary facilities clean and safe.
San Francisco, CA — Mayor London N. Breed and Acting Public Works Director Alaric Degrafinried today announced the first deployment of a series of new portable toilets and hand-washing stations at 15 high-need locations in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The portable toilets, available for use 24 hours a day, will be staffed to deter vandalism and unwanted activities. They also will be serviced daily.
“These safe and clean public bathrooms and hand-washing stations will be available for anybody to use, and we are placing them in areas where we know our unhoused residents and other vulnerable populations gather,” said Mayor Breed. “These facilities provide another crucial component in San Francisco’s response to the COVID-19 public health emergency.”
The first portable toilets and hand-washing stations are in the Tenderloin, South of Market, Bayview-Hunters Point, Castro, and Mission neighborhoods. The initial five will be in place tomorrow, Wednesday, April 8, with all 15 up and running by early next week. The specific locations are listed below, and additional sites will be added soon.
The Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing recommended high-need locations for the relief stations. San Francisco Public Works then refined the list, looking at factors such as proximity to existing public toilets, street slope, and available space.
“These extra bathrooms will help people take care of their basic needs with dignity and help keep our public spaces sanitary,” said Alaric Degrafinried, Acting Public Works Director. “That is important for the public at large and for our street cleaning crews who, as essential workers, remain on the job during this unprecedented pandemic helping to take care of San Francisco.”
The City has issued a grant to Urban Alchemy, a nonprofit workforce development program, to staff the toilets. The organization currently provides attendants for Public Works’ existing Pit Stop public toilet program, which has 24 locations in 13 neighborhoods. These additional COVID-19 response portable toilets and hand-washing stations augment that supply.
Urban Alchemy is providing staffing 24 hours a day at the toilets. The attendants are on hand to make sure the toilets remain stocked with toilet paper and are kept tidy, and that the hand-washing units have soap, water and paper towels. The staff also can assist in requesting emergency response, if needed.
“We are grateful for the opportunity to help in San Francisco’s response to this public health emergency,” said Lena Miller, Executive Director of Urban Alchemy. “Our team has the experience, expertise and passion to serve people in this time of need.”
Other nonprofit workforce development programs may be brought on as the program expands.
The initial 15 toilets and hand washing stations are located at:
- 139 Welsh
- Natoma/Sixth Street
- 2111 Jennings
- 200 Napoleon
- Selby McKinnon
- 14th Street/Stevenson
- 15th Street/Julian
- Market and 16th Street
- 23rd Street/Folsom
- 245 Bayshore