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August 25, 2010

COSW Meeting Information - August 25, 2010


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

5:00 PM

                       City Hall, Room 408


1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place

                      San Francisco, CA94102


Members Present                       Staff Present         

                                    President Kay Gulbengay             Executive Director Emily Murase, PhD

Vice President Julie Soo               Administrative Assistant Cynthia Green

Commissioner Dorka Keehn       Senior Gender Policy Analyst Anu Menon

Commissioner Katherine Munter   Commission Secretary Cynthia Vasquez

Commissioner Rebecca Prowda                     

Commissioner Andrea Shorter                           


                                    Excused:  Commissioner Carolene Marks

                                                CALL TO ORDER/ AGENDA CHANGES  

President Gulbengay called the meeting to order at 5:10 pm.

Action: Approved agenda.    

m/s/c (Keehn/Munter/Unanimous)

No public comment.


II.     APPROVAL OF MINUTES                                                   

President Shorter asked Commissioners to review the minutes from July 28, 2010.

Action: Approved minutes from July 28, 2010. 

m/s/c (Soo/Munter/Unanimous)


No public comment.




A.           Executive Directors Report

Dr. Murase directed Commissioners to her written report.  The final Gender Equality Principles Initiative (GEP) roundtable was held on August 19th at Google’s San Francisco office.  The topics covered were GEP Principles 6-7: Civic and Community Engagement and Transparency and Accountability.  Dr. Murase thanked President Gulbengay for her participation at the roundtable.  The GEP is now moving into a planning phase for the next steps.  Dr. Murase announced that November 3rd will be the last meeting chaired by Commissioner Keehn as her tenure with the Commission will be ending in early 2011.  The Domestic Violence Consortium will be honoring Commissioner Keehn on October 5 for her activism and leadership on the Justice and Courage Oversight Panel.  Dr. Murase announced that October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and the Department will be conducting the annual cell phone drive for the 3rd consecutive year.  CAWA will also be hosting their Beijing+15 Summit on Saturday, September 25, 2010, 9 am – 4 pm at the Delancey Street Foundation. 


Dr. Murase thanked Commissioner Julie Soo for her participation with the Family Violence Council.  Dr. Murase reported that on August 2 Fiscal Policy Analyst Laura Marshall presented the Courage to Change report to the Public Safety Committee of the Board of Supervisors.  Wendy Stills with the Adult Probation Department provided testimony on the many changes that occurred at the Department as a result of the Justice and Courage Domestic Violence Safety Audit. 


President Gulbengay acknowledged Senior Gender Policy Analyst Anu Menon and Policy Director Ann Lehman for their work with the GEP.  President Gulbengay expressed how overwhelmed she was to see the support of the Private Sector partners and their response to the GEP.  If we can get this type of support for such an initiative it should be able to go to other counties. 


IV.    CONSENT AGENDA                                                            

 All matters listed hereunder constitute a Consent Agenda and are considered to be routine by the Commission on the Status of Women.  They will be acted upon by a single roll call vote of the Commission.  There will be no separate discussion of these items unless a member of the Commission so requests, in which event the matter shall be removed from the Consent Agenda and considered as a separate item.  Members of the public may speak on each item listed on the Consent Agenda.


A.           Resolution Recognizing the 100th Anniversary of the AngelIsland Immigration Station

B.           Resolution In Memory of the Life of Joannie Chang

C.           Resolution Recognizing the Contributions of Amy Augustine


Action: To approve the Consent Agenda.

m/s/c (Keehn/Shorter/Unanimous).


Commissioner Soo will be presenting the resolution honoring the life of Joannie Chang at a memorial ceremony.


No public Comment.


V.           OLD BUSINESS


A.           Strategic Plan Update

Dr. Murase reviewed the Fiscal Year 2009-2010 Annual Report. She explained that the agency's work is divided into two broad areas: women's human rights and women's health and safety. The overarching goal in women's human rights is to ensure the human rights of women and girls in San Francisco and beyond. She reviewed the 6 related goals and achievements under each.


1.      Create gender equality in budgets, workplaces, policies, and programs in the City and County of San Francisco.

We issued the Gender Responsive Budgeting: Path to Accountability and Data-Based Decision-Making, February 2010. In terms of gender analysis, we issued the Gender Analysis of San Francisco Commissions and Boards, 2009. We also worked with the Department of Human Resources to identify City layoffs by gender in July 2009. The UN Women's Empowerment Principles announced in March is based on the San Francisco Gender Equality Principles Initiative.


2.      Create gender equality in San Francisco's private sector workplaces.

As part of the Gender Equality Principles Initiative, we hosted a webinar on legal issues (July 2009), corporate roundtables (November 2009, April 2010), launched a web tool (June 2010), and partnered with the NortheasternLawSchool to conduct research into legal frameworks for gender equity in the US and in Europe.


3.      Expand women's equality nationally and globally.

In the past year, staff members have conducted extensive promotion and training on the UN Convention to Eliminate All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), including at the following events.

a.         UN Global Compact Center committee meetings

b.         UN Institute for Training and Research Presentation on Gender Violence, October 2009

c.         UN Commission on the Status of Women Non-Governmental Organizations Parallel Session presentations, March 2010.

d.         UN Treaty Review sessions in Berkeley, March 2010

e.         Human Rights Impact: General Issues and Sectoral Perspectives Forum, ColumbiaUniversity Law Journal, May 2010.

f.          Global Compact Leaders Summit 2010, July 2010


4.      Promote women's leadership opportunities in San Francisco

The Department supported the following events and activities.

a.         Women's Police Summit, October 2009

b.         Women's History Month, March 2010

c.         San FranciscoStateUniversity Gender and Public Policy Roundtable, April 2010

d.         Updating "Road to Leadership" brochure, spring 2010.


5.      Ensure all women in San Francisco have the opportunity for economic independence.

Staff members have focused on developing the Gender Equality Principles Initiative and expanding federal stimulus funding to include more opportunities for women through the following events and activities.

a.         US Department of Labor Contractors Forum, September 2009

b.         Board of Supervisors Hearing on Women and the Economic Crisis, December 2009

c.         JobsNow Program staffing.


6.      Provide the research and resources necessary to assist government and community policy-makers and advocates in the promoting the rights of women and girls.


Staff issued the Report on the Status of Women in San Francisco, 2009 and continues to monitor legislative and policy action at the national, state, and local levels.


The overarching goal in women's health and safety is to end all forms of violence against women. She reviewed the 4 related goals and achievements under each.


1.      Create a comprehensive safety net for women survivors of violence through the administration of the Violence Against Women Prevention & Intervention Grants Program.

Grants Administrator Carol Sacco has assumed a leadership role on the City-wide Non-Profit Monitoring Task Force. Staff convened the Annual Partner Agency Conference on major donors in January 2010. Dr. Murase briefly reviewed performance outcomes for the VAW Grants Program.


2.      Create a seamless criminal justice response to domestic violence.

Staff members have worked on the following initiatives.

a.         Committee on Housing for Domestic Violence Survivors

b.         Audit Implementation Committee and the release of the Courage to Change Final Report, May 2010

c.         Ongoing oversight for the JUSTIS implementation.

d.         The Bridges to Freedom language fluency project which trained 112 criminal justice and social service responders in Spanish/Cantonese DV terminology, January - June 2010.


3.      Coordinate community-based and City-wide family violence prevention and intervention efforts in San Francisco.

Staff supported the following activities:

a.         Convening an Intervention Committee to develop a child abuse intervention program.

b.         Forensic Digital Photography Training, November 2009

c.         Dashboards and reports including the First Comprehensive Report on Family Violence in San Francisco, 2009 and Family Violence Dashboards, February 2010.


4.      End the trafficking of women into San Francisco and the wider Bay Are and address the needs of trafficking survivors.

Staff engaged in the following activities.

a.         Launched the San Francisco Collaborative Against Human Trafficking, January 2010

b.         Public Awareness Campaign, January - February 2010

c.         Data Collection Committee.



Dr. Murase concluded with department administration that has the overarching goal of creating efficient internal operations that allow the Department to meet all external responsibilities and objectives. She reviewed the 2 related goals and achievements under each.


1.      Carry out all essential internal operations necessary to ensure smooth operation of the Department and Commission.

Staff members have benefited from JobsNow, Leadership CA, and Leadership SF. The Department hosted interns from San Francisco State University Graduate School of Social Work and the Willie Brown Public Policy Institute, the Pacific Asian American Women Bay Area Coalition, and colleges from across the country.


2.      Provide high quality customer service to individual constituents, community and government agencies, and all others are accessing Department Services.

Executive Secretary Cynthia Vasquez has focused on comprehensive referrals to the public and all staff members have engaged in numerous instances of public outreach and promotion, including census outreach and a cell phone drive last October as part of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.


Commissioner Shorter thanked Dr. Murase for her informative presentation.  She wanted to know about the status of the gender analysis of Commissions and Boards as well as the various city Departments.  Dr. Murase explained that the Department is now required to provide a gender analysis of Boards and Commissions every 2 years.  While there have been appointments of women onto City Boards or Commissions, it is important for women to be represented on bodies with large budgets.  Commissioner Soo explained Department staff drafted a template to be used by City Departments in reporting demographics of Commissions and Board members.    


Commissioner Keehn acknowledged the staff for all of the work and accomplishments made over the last year.  Commissioner Shorter praised the Department and, in particular the Department’s internship program.  She reminded the Commission that the Department continues to be short staffed and that the intern program should not be relied upon to permanently fill the gap in staffing. 


Commissioner Munter wanted to know about the needs or current gaps of the Department.  Dr. Murase explained that the GEP program will be moving on to a new stage and will likely need more staffing.  The Department was successful in training staff from the FultonCounty in Atlanta, Georgia on gender budgeting which they have now implemented in all county departments.  Due to a staffing shortage, the Department has not been able to do substantive policy work on girls over the last few years. 


Commissioner Keehn thanked the Department for the high quality of work despite limited staffing.   




A.     InternationalMuseum of Women Presentation                                                                   

Clare Winterton, Executive Director of the International Museum of Women (IMOW), thanked the Commission and Dr. Murase for the opportunity to share the work of the Museum.  Ms. Winterton explained that the IMOW is a social change museum that inspires global action, connects people across borders, and amplifies the voices of women worldwide through global online exhibitions, history, the arts and cultural programs that educate, create dialogue and build community.  IMOW is a San Francisco web-based museum with 24/7 accessibility in multiple languages that include: English, Spanish, French, and Arabic. The museum fuels women’s self expression and creativity by using art and multi-media as a gateway to social change.  Since 1994, the exhibits have been available on-line and curated online, there have been some physical exhibits and some exhibits that have travelled.  Some of the exhibits are photographs, podcasts, videos, or paintings.


As a part of its mission, IMOW conducted evaluations to gather information of the social change the museum encourages.  In 2008, 64% reported intensified attention to global women’s issues and 40% reported getting involved or intended to get involved in personal action-steps towards gender equity. In 2007, 73% reported 3 or more personal changes (in attitudes, opinions or aspirations) as a result of engagement and 57% reported taking three or more action steps in support of advancing women’s opportunities and leadership.


Ms. Winterton explained that public programming has featured conversations with labor activist Dolores Huerta, author and columnist Nicholas Kristof, and, upcoming speaker, Ingrid Betancourt, a former Columbian hostage.


IMOW has been successful in building a vibrant global audience with 50,000+ visitors per month, 3 million participants in the last 4 years and visited by over 200 countries.  The top cities for global web-traffic are from the following countries:

1. United States                       

         2. India                        

         3. France                                 

         4. Canada                                

         5. United Kingdom                  

         6. Spain                                   

         7. Chile                        

         8. Mexico                                                        

         9. Saudi Arabia                                   

         10. Egypt         


The following are recent IMOW exhibitions:

·      Imagining Ourselves 2006-2007

·      Women, Power and Politics (2008)

·      Economica


Forthcoming exhibitions include:

·         Economica Focusing on Latin America: Costa Rica, Mexico, and Argentina (October 2010)

·         Young Women Speak the Economy, which will be physically exhibited in Denmark, Sudan, Filipines and the United States (April 2011).

·         Global Motherhood/Maternal Health, which will focus on maternal deaths and women’s human rights 

       (September 2011).


Commissioner Soo wanted to know why the exhibit was not available in Chinese considering the large Chinese population here in San Francisco.  Ms. Winterton explained that censorship issues may prohibit use or viewing in China. 


As a former board member, Commissioner Shorter expressed how impressed she was to see how far IMOW has come.  Commissioner Shorter wanted to know why the 4 countries had been chosen to physically have exhibits.  Ms. Winterton explained that the partnerships at each location with practicality and logistics were the reason for those choices.  Commissioner Shorter also wanted to know if there was a sense of how the work of the museum has had any impact in any policy arena.  Ms. Winterton explained that they would like to take the information that they have been able to gather to show policy makers what an influence the museum has made. 


Commissioner Soo suggested contacting the Chinese Women’s Federation to bring more knowledge of the IMOW to a new population. 


B.     Appointments Accountability Ordinance                                                                              

Heidi Sieck, President of the San Francisco Women's Political Committee (SFWPC) and co-founder of the Women’s Policy Summit, presented information about the Appointments Accountability Ordinance was introduced at the Board of Supervisors and referred to the Rules Committee.  This proposed ordinance arose from the Commission's gender analysis of City Boards and Commissions to monitor the diversity of appointments.  Ms. Sieck thanked the Commission and Department for their support and partnership in this effort.   


Ms. Sieck explained that the SFWPC’s mission is to support women in leadership and support women perusing leadership positions, particularly public office.  It also serves as an advocacy group to promote economic development and economic stability, and to gather many women’s groups together to work together. 


The purpose of the legislation is to establish and maintain a centralized and publicly accessible online database of information related to appointments to City Boards and Commissions.  This would include all Boards and Commissions, names of current commissioners, term dates, and who is responsible for in making the appointments.  Once the proposed ordinance is adopted, practical implementation of it will need to be established by the City.  Ms. Sieck emphasized how helpful a centralized website would be for the Department when conducting its bi-annual gender analysis of Boards and Commissions.  Ms. Sieck requested the Commission to support the proposed ordinance. 


Commissioner Keehn explained that this ordinance has been a long time coming and promises to be a great tool for diverse leadership.  Commissioner Shorter stated how important this ordinance is in providing transparency and a centralized location for this data.    


Action:  To support the Appointments Accountability Ordinance.

m/s/c (Keehn/Munter/Unanimous)


VII.   PUBLIC COMMENT                                                                       

Papia Gambelin, Manager of Government Relations with Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) explained that PG&E strives for diversity, inclusion, gender equality, and to represent the communities served.  For the past 25 years, PG&E has had a women’s resource group.  Nationally, women make up 25.1% in this non-traditional workforce whereas PG&E has the highest rate at 29.7% women employees among peer companies. 


Debbie Manti, a representative with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers and a former PG&E employee explained that she is requesting the support of the Commission to not support a 2-tier wage system that PG&E is currently proposing.  Clerical workers will soon be in contract negotiations and the 2-tier system would create entry level pay levels just above the poverty level.  The clerical division is made up of 59% people of color and 74% women. 


Mike Marasaki gave public testimony on homeless women he has encountered on streets of San Francisco and requested resources to obtain assistance for this population.  He was referred to 311 where operators could connect him to appropriate services. 


Commissioner Soo reminded the Commission that August 26 is the 90th Anniversary of Woman’s Equality Day as well as the 100th Anniversary of the Angel Island Immigration Station which is where her grandmother entered the United States.  Commissioner Soo also wanted to congratulate Lucy Koh who has been confirmed by the U.S. Senate as the first Asian American Woman appointed to the U.S District Court for the Northern District of California. 


VIII. Adjourn

Commissioner Soo requested the meeting be adjourned in memory of the late Joannie Chang.

Action: Motion to adjourn.   

m/s/c (Keehn/Munter/Unanimous)

The meeting adjourned at 6:36m.





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