Supervisor Farrell - Newsletter


Supervisor Mark Farrell

Fall 2017 Newsletter


I am glad to be back in touch here to provide an update on what we have been up to over the past couple of months.

Inside of City Hall, we have been fighting to increase the representation of women in the public realm, approved an equal pay policy to help level the playing field for women in the workplace, and approved a first-in-the-nation ban on toxic flame retardant chemicals that was causing negative health effects in our first responders, children, and pets. In partnership with Mayor Lee, we also released a road-map for our City to execute to deliver fast and affordable Internet to all of San Francisco.

Outside of City Hall, I have hosted public safety meetings with our Police Department to discuss public safety best practice tips and to update the public on recent public safety incidents across the District. We also have been moving full steam ahead on opening public schoolyards on the weekends across San Francisco through the San Francisco Shared Schoolyard Project. 


Legislation & Policy Update


Ensuring Equal Pay for Women with Pay Parity

Women in San Francisco are paid 84 cents for every dollar – with women of color earning even less. I am committed to closing this alarming gender pay gap. The Board of Supervisors unanimously approved my “Pay Parity” law, which bans employers from considering past salary information in determining what salary to offer the applicant. The law also bans employers from asking past employers about an applicant’s current or past salary without the applicant’s authorization. Studies have shown that when women are required to disclose past salary information as part of the application and salary negotiation process that they often end up at a significant disadvantage. My policy will help enable fair salary and wage negotiations between applicants and employers while working to close the very real gender wage gap.


Fighting for More Female Representation 

Representation matters. I introduced a policy at the Board to join in an international movement and make San Francisco the first country in the nation to establish a goal of 30% female representation in public spaces, City Boards, Commissions, and publications by 2020. To kick-start that effort, I am pushing for a statue to commemorate Maya Angelou – an international and San Francisco icon. Of the 87 public sculptures and memorials in San Francisco – only two depict non-fictional women. We can clearly do better to show all women across San Francisco that representation matters. My policy will be up at Committee and onto the full Board in the coming weeks. 


Hosting Hearings for Solutions to Reducing Homelessness

Homelessness remains the top concern of residents and businesses citywide and working to reduce it citywide remains a top priority for me. To that end, I hosted two hearings to ask tough questions about what is working, what is not, and areas for us to focus on as a City. The first hearing focused on our biennial point-in-time homeless count that showed a slight reduction in homelessness citywide from two-years ago. The second hearing discussed San Francisco’s recently released “5-Year Strategic Framework to Reduce Homelessness.” We talked about the new plan’s goals to reduce chronic homelessness in half, end functional family homelessness in San Francisco, and to implement a new centralized intake and data system to better route individuals who are homeless to the services, shelter, and housing opportunities they need. You can view the presentation of the new plan here:

Keeping Firefighters, Families, and Pets Safe From Toxic Chemicals


Most people are unaware (myself included until I learned more) that common household furniture and children’s products often contain toxic chemicals that have been linked to serious health ailments, including birth defects, decreased fertility, learning disorders in children, cancer in firefighters and other first responders, and thyroid disorders in pets. Despite no evidence these toxic chemicals actually save lives, homes here in San Francisco and throughout the state; unfortunately, have literally pounds of flame retardants circulating in them from furniture alone. In coordination with our City’s Department of Environment and public health advocates, we introduced and unanimously approved a first-in-the-nation ban on the sale of all upholstered furniture and children’s products in San Francisco treated with toxic flame retardant checmicals. Through effective public policy, we can better educate the public and protect them from these toxic chemicals. I believe we can force the market to change and provide healthier and safer products for consumers.

Fiber_SF_-_News_17.jpgWorking to Connect All of San Francisco to Fast and Affordable Internet

The digital divide (those who lack Internet access at home) in San Francisco is disturbing and real. Over 100,000 San Franciscans and 15% of public school students lack Internet access at home – the digital divide is approximately 30% for African-American and Latino public school students. Every San Francisco resident, business, and non-profit deserves fast and affordable Internet – it’s the 21st century utility. For over two-years, I have been working closely with Mayor Lee to make that vision a reality, and we just recently released the road-map from experts to make it possible. For over 9-months, the City’s fiber consultants worked to produce recommendations for the City to consider to pursue a citywide fiber network that will reach every resident and business, provide more choice, and ensure affordable rates for residents and businesses. With the report and road-map in hand, we will be working over the coming months to connect all of San Francisco to fast and affordable Internet! Read more from the experts about our plan:

Office of Supervisor Mark Farrell
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, Room 244, San Francisco, CA 94102

Phone: (415) 554-7752 Fax: (415) 554-7843
Legislative Aides: 


In the Community

Labor Council's Annual Pre-Labor Day Breakfast
It was a pleasure to attend the Labor Council’s Annual Pre-Labor Day Breakfast! I was excited to share my thoughts on our city-wide Project Labor Agreement legislation with the Council and those in attendance.


Month_11_-_Laf_Movie_Night.jpgLafayette Park Movie Night
I hosted a night of family fun in Lafayette Park featuring the classic movie Mrs. Doubtfire - it was great to see all of the families out!

Shared Schoolyard Project: John Muir Elementary
The Shared Schoolyard Project continues to be a huge success as we open more schools on the weekend. The John Muir Elementary kickoff was a wonderful event and I’m excited for this schoolyard to continue benefiting families in San Francisco.


Lafayette Park Fall Social
I joined other Friends of Lafayette board members in attending the 6th annual Lafayette Park Fall Social. This popular event was great opportunity for community members to learn what the park has to offer our community.


Dolphin Club’s 100th Anniversary of Golden Gate Swim
It was an honor to attend Dolphin Club’s celebration for the 100th anniversary of the club’s first swim across the Golden Gate Bridge, an incredibly challenging task.

University of San Francisco Public Policy Class
I had the pleasure of speaking to a group of college students at USF on how we take on public policy issues here at San Francisco City Hall and to hear directly from them about some of their policy priorities. 

Month_11_-mckinley_preview.jpgShared Schoolyard Project: McKinley Elementarymonth_11-_ssp_Longfellow_Elementary.jpg
Another Shared Schoolyard Project grand opening! McKinley Elementary School has now joined to be a center for neighborhood activities benefiting the families of our city.

Shared Schoolyard Project: Longfellow Elementary
Another Shared Schoolyard Project grand opening! McKinley Elementary School is the newest center Elementary taking part in the SSP.


North American Infrastructure Leadership Forum
I joined other executives in San Francisco at the Palace Hotel for the 9th North American Infrastructure Leadership Forum where we discussed infrastructure development in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, while facilitating business and promoting projects across the region.


Halloween Festival at Glen Park Elementary
With over 300 guests, it was a pleasure to kick off celebrating one of my favorite holidays at the Glen Park Halloween festival! The costume contest was a highlight for everyone.

California Academy of Sciences Halloween Party
My family and I attended an evening of Halloween fun at the California Academy of Sciences. All proceeds supported Academy for All, a new initiative providing free and low-cost Academy admission to children and families.

Future of Government Panel
I was able to deliver an overview of the civic innovation and tech initiatives I lead locally and participated in a panel discussion on the role of government in the 21st century at Pier 17.


Upcoming Events

District 2

BATS Improv: Family Drama
BATS Improv, November 4th -25th
Just in time for the holidays, BATS Improv revives Family Drama at Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture. Like many traditional American plays, the Family Drama story unfolds in real time and on a single set — with each actor portraying a single character throughout the entire three-act play.(Parental Advisory: This show may not be suitable for children younger than 16 years old because of possible adult themes and language.)

Golden Gate Maintenance
Crissy Field Center, November 9th, 9:00am - 12:00pm
Taste fine wine from 100 vintners at SF Vintners Market and then purchase the bottles you like at Fort Mason Festival Pavilion for age 21+. Repeats in March.

Presidio Bird Walking
Fort Mason Center’s Festival Pavilion, November 11th, 8:30am - 10:30am
Come on a youth-led bird walk in the Presidio with Jonah Benningfield, accompanied by Presidio Trust staff Rebekah Berkov and Diony Gamoso. Enjoyable for birders of any level, from beginners to the pros.

Presidio Stargazing Party
Main Parade Ground, November 11th, 6:30pm - 9:00pm
Presidio Stargazing Parties are perfect for families and people of all ages interested in seeing the universe through a telescope. The SFAA brings telescopes and amateur astronomers to guide you, unveiling some of the night sky's most interesting astronomical beauties. See the moon, planets, nebulae and galaxies up close and learn some of the constellations at a star tour.

Veterans Day Service and Art Service
Presidio Officer’s Club, November 11th, 10:00am - 1:00pm
This Veterans Day, in recognition and celebration of the spirit, sacrifice, and significance of military service, the Presidio invites veterans and civilians to come together at the Presidio Officers’ Club. We’ll have veterans’ art on display, Creative Family Fun arts and crafts for the whole family, and community service opportunities related to the recent fires in Northern California.

Marina Community Association's Annual Fall Meeting
The Golden Yacht Club, November 15th, 6:30PM
Hear Supervisor Mark Farrell, SFPD Captain John Jaimerena, and many others speak at MCA's Annual Fall Meeting and vote for the MCA Board of Directors nominees. This year, we have 9 candidates to fill 6 open seats!

Sketch and Go With Don Colley From Faber Castell
Fort Mason Center, Nov. 17th, 3:00PM – 5:00PM
Discover the immediacy and satisfaction of on-the-go urban sketching with Faber-Castell artist Don Colley at a FLAX art + design workshop at Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture. Colley demonstrates clever, fast-paced urban sketching techniques using Faber-Castell’s Pitt artist pens.

BCBG Holiday Warehouse Sale Extraveganza
Fort Mason Center- Meeting and Activity SPaces, Nov. 18th, 10:00am – 4:00pm
Top-rated by and Yelp, the “BCBG Holiday Warehouse Sale Extravaganza” returns to Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture just in time for holiday shopping fun. The sale offers fantastic bargains on more than 2,000 dresses, tops, leather jackets, denim, and more; including fabulous cocktail attire for the holiday. Shoppers can save as much as 70 percent off the latest designs and save an additional 10 percent on cash purchases.
The sale takes place in Building C, Room C-210.

Hold These Truths: A Dramatic Concert Reading
Cowell Theater, Nov. 18th, 2:00PM & 7:00PM
Join acclaimed actor Greg Watanabe and the San Francisco Japanese American Citizens League (SFJACL) for a stirring rendition of Jeanne Sakata‘s World War II internment play, Hold These Truths, at Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture. 

Traffic Skills 101: Urban Bicycling Workshop
Golden Gate Valley Branch Library, December 9th, 11:00AM - 1:00PM
Looking for a comprehensive introduction into urban riding? Our Traffic Skills 101 is a two-part course covering everything you need to know about biking in the city. The two parts are divided into a Day 1 Classroom course which is a pre-requisite for the 6-hour Day 2 On-Road course. Great for anyone wanting to hone their skills, or for those interested but intimidated by urban biking.

10th Annual NEN Awards
City Hall's Rotunda, January 26th, 6:00PM - 8:00PM
Supervisor Farrell is proud to announce the return of the NEN Awards. The Awards celebrate the amazing work of community leaders and organizations in San Francisco's neighborhoods. As is the tradition with the NEN Awards, the winners are nominated by the community, and we need your help to make sure that the heroes in our district will be considered for an award. Categories include: Comeback Neighborhood of the Year, Lifetime Achievement, NERT/Alert Leadership, and many more. The nomination window closes at 5pm on Friday, December 1st, so don't delay - submit your nominations today! To see a complete list of the NEN Award categories, and register to attend, visit the site below: 


The 14th Another Hole in the Head Film Festival
New People Cinema, Oct 5th - Nov 8th, 4:00 PM
Our annual festival of horror, sci-fi, dark fantasy and exploitation cinema defies convention to bring you the most outrageous genre films from both emerging and established filmmakers. Ten days of celluloid mayhem not usually found in your local cineplex!

American Indian Film Festival
Fillmore Heritage Center, November 3 - 11, 2017
Welcome to the 42nd annual American Indian Film Festival (AIFF) which helps American Indian media artists, screens their films at AMC Van Ness 14, giving awards out in the process. Come explore new collection of creative, powerful, and moving film-works from talented filmmakers this season.

ArtSpan Open Studios
Various San Francisco Locations, Oct 15th - Nov 12th
SF Open Studios, the oldest and largest open studios program in the country, is an annual, month-long art event in October and November that showcases over 800 emerging and established San Francisco artists in their studios.

Science Festival
Roxie Theater, Nov 3rd - 11th
Bay Area Science Festival offers 40 fun events about science and technology, including exhibitions, lectures, debates, concerts, plays, and workshops.

San Francisco Transgender Film Festival
Roxie Theater, Nov 10th - 12th
The San Francisco Transgender Film Festival (SFTFF) screens films that promote the visibility of transgender and gender variant people and challenge the mainstream media’s negative stereotypes of our communities. We provide opportunities for transgender and gender variant media artists, build community through our film and performance events, and engage our audiences in cross-community dialogue.

American Classical Concert
Davies Symphony Hall, Nov 10th - 12th
The San Francisco Symphony and its chorus perform works with an American theme, including “The American Flag” by Dvorak and “An American in Paris” by Gershwin at Davies Symphony Hall.

Films of India
Castro Theater, Nov 9th - Nov 12th, 4:00pm - 7:00pm
See films from India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka at the San Francisco International South Asian Film Festival (SFISAFF) at New People and Castro Theatre.

Embarcadero Festival
One, Two, Three and Four Embarcadero Center, Nov 17th, 4:00pm - 7:00pm
Visit Embarcadero Center’s Building Lighting Ceremony & Carnival for family activities (carnival games, face painting, cookie decorating, interactive arts & crafts), live music, Santa, Mrs. Claus, Mickey Mouse, an ice skating show, fireworks, and 15,000 Christmas lights.

Illuminate SF Light Art Festival
Multiple locations, November 23, 2017 - Jan. 1, 2018
See dozens of dramatic glowing art installations in different neighborhoods during Illuminate SF Light Art Festival with free guided tours, an illuminated bike ride, self-guided walks, and artist talks. Free.

Thanksgiving Run/Walk
Polo Field, Golden Gate Park, November 23rd
San Francisco Turkey Trot (3 & 5 mi.) is in Golden Gate Park.

San Francisco AIDS Foundation - Santa Skivvies Run
Sunday, December 10 - 3600 16th Street
Santa Skivvies Run is a festive, one-mile run through the Castro benefiting San Francisco AIDS Foundation. Join us as we drop trou, raise funds, and fight AIDS. Don't miss out on the best event of the season! Everyone is welcome to participate: Naughty or nice, young or old, fresh-faced newbie or long-time Skivvies veteran. Pull on your favorite festive costume, or strip down to your undies to raise awareness and fight HIV/AIDS in our community. For more information or to register, visit

In the Media 

September 5th, 2017
Marina Times, “San Francisco’s Response to the “Alt-Right””

September 13th, 2017
San Francisco Business Times,”One way to end the gender pay gap: Eliminate the question of previous salary”

September 11th, 2017
Chronicle, “SF supervisors to consider cannabis dispensary moratorium Tuesday”

September 12th, 2017
Fox 2 KTVU, “SF tent on sidewalk prohibition has been enforced 152 times”

September 25th, 2017
Lexology, “San Francisco encourages worker empowerment with new gig economy guidance”

September 27th, 2017
Chronicle, “A way to move SF consumers away from meat containing antibiotics”

October 10th, 2017
Examiner, “SF to ban sale of upholstered furniture containing flame retardants linked to cancer”

October 12th, 2017
Marina Times “The value of sister-city relationships for San Francisco in today’s world”

October 16th, 2017
Chronicle “Homeless camp-clearing Proposition Q beginning to have an impact”

October 18th, 2017
SF Gate “San Francisco moving closer to building a city-owned Internet network”

October 18th, 2017
Bay City Beacon “This Week in City Hall; 10/16 - 10/20”

October 18th, 2017
Government Technology “SF Supervisor Rethinks Where Robots Fit on City Sidewalks”

October 24th, 2017
Examiner “New SF buildings could be fiber-ready”

October 25th, 2017

October 25th, 2017
BoingBoing “San Francisco may finally get decent internet access, thanks to municipal fiber”

October 31st, 2017
Examiner “SF approves costly lease to start moving city departments out of Hall of Justice”

November 2nd, 2017
Chronicle, “SF panel seeks to legalize pot smoking inside dispensaries”

November 2nd, 2017
Hoodline, “Citywide Broadband Network Could Cost $1.9 Billion”

November 3rd, 2017
State Scoop, “Gigabit internet should be a universal utility in San Francisco, says city report”


Office of Supervisor Mark Farrell
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, Room 244, San Francisco, CA 94102
Phone: (415) 554-7752 Fax: (415) 554-7843
Legislative Aides:, 

You can also keep up with Supervisor Mark Farrell on Twitter.