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Meeting Information


2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 


      Held at Martin Luther King Middle School in the Bayview,  San Francisco



1.      (ACTION)  Roll Call

The meeting was called to order at 6:05 pm by President Julian.  Comms. Aramburo, Chuck, Dupre were present at the gavel.  Comm. Drake arrived at 6:08 pm  Hale arrived at 6:20 pm.


2.       (ACTION) Review and approval of Sept 21, 2000 meeting minutes  

      Upon motion by Comm. Arámburo, and seconded, the minutes were approved as written.


3.    (DISCUSSION)   Chief Probation Officer's Report:

a.      Status report on Juvenile Hall replacement project

Chris Bigelow gave an update on the progress.  Things are still being fleshed out as to the process for demolition and construction, the phases being seen as 3 nowand not 2 as formerly planned. 

The gym is now seen as a separate structure from the warehouse and not attached. 

The Dept has been promised (orally) $10 million from the Capital Improvement Advisory Committee, but nothing in writing.  This still leaves the Dept short $7 mil. There has been no response from the Feds regarding the environmental impact issues/clearances/waivers.

Comm. Arámburo asked about the environmental impact on the detainees during construction.  Bigelow said that all necessary and normal precautions will be taken but that there were many options not open to them because this is a residential area.  Everything that can be done will be to mitigate the hazards to residents, employees, and neighbors.   They have scheduled a meeting with the mid town terrace neighbors for early Dec.

Comm. Arámburo  asked if anything can be done to reduce the hall population during construction.  Chief Williams said that there are 6 things that will be looked at to do this. They have to find one quickly because we will lose 28 beds with the demolition of the RU/admin.

Comm. Dupré asked if there was anything the Commission could do to assure the CIAC comes through with the promised monies.  The Chief said he will be contacting individual Commissioners to discuss this.

Comm. Hale asked about the murals and if there could be murals on the outside of the structures (he referred to an outdoor mural on 3rd and Carroll).  Bigelow said that this contract was a separate one between the artists and the Arts Commission and that inquiries should be directed to them.  Comm. Hale asked that the Arts Commission and artists be invited to the next Commission meeting to discuss this.

b.      Introduction of Cassie Coleman

Chief Williams introduced Cassie Coleman, who is a recent hire to work with both the Dept of Public Health and Juvenile Probation to provide media liaison work for the collaborative project being undertaken, as well as providing comprehensive media relations for the Probation Dept. specifically.

c.      Report on Population Reduction/Disproportionate Minority Confinement project, by James Bell (Youth Law Center)

James Bell summarized what they (Youth Law Center) would be providing for the Dept regarding the issues of population control and disproportionate minority confinement, although he prefaced his remarks with his skepticism that anything would work in SF.

They would provide a national survey and assessment of practices and their results, to choose possible strategies for SF. (eg. he breifly went over the experience in 3 other places where efforts to reduceDMC are ongoing; Chicago, Seattle, Santa Cruz)

They would assess the current status of this Dept's practices: gathering mass amounts of stats on processing of youth in Juvenile Hall (ethnicity, offenses, age, length of stay, etc. etc.) to ascertain the "choke" points -where processes are stalled, leaving youth in the hall.

They would propose what needs to be done here to resolve these problems.

Comm. Jackson-Drake asked who would need to be committed to this for it to work.  Ans. Those bureaucrats in charge of this Dept and Hall.  Then some big politico downtown (possibly a Juvenile Court judge, a Supervisor). 

Comm. Arámburo  asked how many of the other locations utlize electronic monitoring as an alternative to detainment.   Ans:  all of them.  In Chicago, they also utilize day treatment programs.  Comm. Hale expressed his concern for the stigmatization of the youth through these devices.  Comm. Arámburo   asked what the responses to the devise have been from the youth?  Ans: there hasn't been a significant survey taken about this.

J. Bell mentioned another aspect of the system that needed to be considered.  The police.  There were two ways to deal with them. 1) include them in the process of assessment -another jurisdiction trained their police on their intake instrument so that the police could make a determination at the point of arrest, whether they would detain the youth in juvile hall or not; which allowed them to decide to arrest or cite and release.  2) exclude them altogether, allowing them to bring anyone up to the hall, and deal with the intake assessment at that point.

Bell emphasized that no matter what.  In order to reduce the population, there had to be alternatives to incarceration that the Dept was willing to implant and utilize.

d.      FY 2000-1 operating budget update

This item was tabled.

e.      Highlights since last Commission meeting     (items under "e" were tabled)

·        50th Anniversary celebration, and swearing-in of San Francisco Juvenile Probation Department peace officers 

·        San Francisco Interfaith Council 10th Anniversary celebration

f.       Trends/Emerging Issues/Upcoming Events

·        Management Retreat, December 1, 2000

The Chief mentioned this and invited the Commissioners to attend.

·        Planning for Juvenile Probation Commission Retreat

The Chief just brought this up as a possible thing the Commission might want to do sometime, to follow up on the retreat of 1999.

g.      Staff Commendations

The Chief read a letter of appreciation from a mother of a detainee in B-4, profusely thanking the staff for their treatment and guidance of her son while he was in the hall.  (A copy of the letter is in the Commission office).

4.      (DISCUSSION) Asian Law Caucus presentation on language access needs of juveniles and their families in Juvenile Hall and the Probation Dept (Khin Mai Aung & colleagues reporting).

Khin Mai Aung and Evelyn Guzman spoke.  Khin Mai Aung is from the Asian Law Caucus and Eveyln from Mission Neighborhood Centers.  They are part of a 4 group task force (comprised of ALC, MNC, La Raza Centro Legal, and Asian Pacific Islander Wellness Center).  They began looking at the language needs of the clients of this Dept and discovered that the Dept didn't have a consistent and comprehensible policy for delivering language appropriate services to the youth and their families.  The courts have systematic translation services for their activities, but the Dept seemed to be sporadic and casual, leading to many situations where clients are not given appropriate or adequate services, and the clients' rights are not maintained.  Such situations as mono lingual written materials, correspondence, signage in the building, face to face counseling and school instruction, curriculum, to processes such as making grievances, understanding their legal rights, and educational programs; all are places where non English speakers need language assistance and are denied.

Khin stated that this has been brought to the attention of the Dept.  They have met with the Chief and he wants the Dept to be a part of this group to look into where the various needs exist, and to come up with recommendations for both short term and long term solutions.

They hope to bring forth a set of recommendations by the Spring.

Comm. Julian said that there needs to be attention paid to culture and gender also.

Comm. Arámburo  noted that the need for language interpreters may exceed the ability of the Dept to hire, so it may be a possible activity for a corps of volunteer language assistants.  Check with the faith community.

Comm. Hale asked about the possibility of putting together an instructional video for mono lingual clients to educate them on the system and what to expect.  Possibly working with public access TV to do such a show.

5.       (ACTION) Consideration of, and possible action on Program Committee's recommendation for contracting with the Youth Guidance Center Improvement Committee in the amount of $115,065.00  for the following vocational and educational programs:  (explanatory documents: program descriptions)

a.      Juvy Java

b.      GED Plus

c.      Focus II Advanced Computer Literacy

Liz Jackson-Simpson, President of the Bd of the YGCIC (and Associate Vice President of the SF Youth Employment Collaborative), represented the organization (along with John Knox, the coordinator of the programs). They opened up for any Commisison questions.  Comm. Dupré moved to approve the recommendation of the Program Committee to enter into the contract. Comm. Arámburo seconded.  Comm. Jackson-Drake asked about the make up of the YGCIC Bd..  Cheyenne Bell showed her a list of the Bd members.   Comm. Dupré asked if there was any literature that assessed the efficacy of the "Focus" approach to their education and training. Knox said that they produce periodic and final reports on their activities and outcomes for each of their funding sources. There was no discussion  The question was called, and by voice vote, the motion carried, unanimously (5-0).

Comm. Dupré commended Jackson-Simpson for her central role in bringing in a $28 million (over 5 yrs) grant from the Dept of Labor for a youth employment collaborative with several neighborhoods in SF.  Jackson-Simpson said that the SF proposal was rated number 1 out of all proposals submitted to DOL.  26 were funded.  It is now in the process of gearingup with staff.

6.      (DISCUSSION)   Public Comment on any matter within the subject matter jurisdiction of the Juvenile Probation Commission.

      Chief Williams announced the resignation of Cheyenne Bell and highly commended her for all the work in developing the Community Programs division.  C. Bell thanked the Chief, Asst. Chief, her staff, and the Commission for all the support in doing this, noting that when she started 10 yrs ago, there were only 2 contracts and now there are some 80.   This administration, and Commission are the best she's seen in those years.

 Comm. Hale recounted how when he began in the BVHP Foundation Community Defender's program, Cheyenne was an inspiration to him, and has remained so to this day.

Comm. Dupré mentioned that he recalls her days at KPOO as a Raggae DJ.

Comm. Julian echoed the praise already given to Bell, and thanked her on behalf of the Commisison for her work.

Comm. Dupré mentioned the anniversary celebration of the SF Interfaith Council, where it presented an award to Chief Williams.

7.  (DISCUSSION)   Announcements, requests for future agenda items.

        Comm. Jackson-Drake asked for a report on the library situation in the Dept.

        Comm. Hale announced that the Safe Haven program, now under the auspices of another CBO, is doing well.  He also mentioned that his team, the SF. Brown Bombers were to play their championship game on Friday, the 24th.

      He reported that he met with Eva Patterson, of the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights, in regards to changing public policy concerning public education.  He thought it would be appropriate to have the Chief follow up with her on the issue of DMC.

          Comm. Dupré moved to adjourn this meeting in the loving memory of a long time community activist and youth worker in the Western Addition.  Thomatra Scott, who passed recently.  "Scotty" was active with youth citywide, but had a close association with the African American and Japanese American communities of the Western Addition.

8.   (ACTION)   Adjournment   

        The meeting was adjourned at 8:12 pm  in memory of Thomatra Scott (Scotty).