Supervisor Vallie Brown brings her activist background and creative solutions to the issues facing our neighborhoods today, including housing, homelessness, transportation, quality of life, women's rights, and a cleaner and greener environment.
As Our Supervisor, VALLIE IS FOCUSED ON OUR MOST CRITICAL ISSUES
Comprehensive Solutions to Our Housing Crisis
San Francisco neighborhoods are facing a housing crisis, and our Supervisor Vallie Brown has made housing her highest priority. Vallie takes a comprehensive approach: protecting renters and helping to create new apartments and affordable housing. She’s streamlining the approval and building process, identifying new sites and funding for affordable housing, and protecting neighborhood vibrancy and character.
Creating New Affordable Housing and Protecting Renters
When it comes to protecting renters and keeping people in our neighborhoods, Vallie’s creative approach resulted in her pioneering the Neighborhood Preference policy that gives existing local residents priority for new affordable housing, and expanding the City’s program to buy at-risk rent-controlled buildings to protect existing tenants from eviction. She also worked tenaciously with City leaders to identify new sites for affordable housing, including the troubled former McDonald’s site on Stanyan that will result in 100% affordable housing.
Created neighborhood preference policy to give existing local residents priority for new affordable housing.
Identified the troubled former McDonald’s site on Stanyan to create 100% affordable housing.
Expanded the City’s program to buy at-risk rent-controlled buildings by $40 million to protect tenants from eviction, preventing Ellis Act evictions and permanently preserving affordable, rent-controlled housing.
Creating the Affordable Housing Production and Preservation Fund to expand our 100% affordable housing stock through new construction and acquiring existing buildings.
Funded Prop F after it was passed by voters last year, ensuring that every San Franciscan has a right and access to counsel in eviction cases.
Making Housing More Affordable for Low- and Middle-Income People
Vallie is also proud of her work to increase the density of new housing on Divisadero. Facing steep opposition to any new housing, Supervisor Brown advocated not just to turn a polluting asphalt gas station, a car wash, and an abandoned radiator shop into new affordable housing into housing, but she also increased the density of those apartments to make them more affordable to low- and middle-income people to give more people the opportunity to stay in our neighborhoods.
Increased the density and inclusionary affordable housing policies along Divisadero to ensure that new construction results in affordable housing.
Fought to ensure 400 Divisadero has a higher affordable housing inclusionary rate than required by City law to build more apartments for low- and middle-income San Franciscans.
Pushing to pass the $600 million Affordable Housing Bond on the ballot this November.
Creating plans to build 100% affordable housing on parcels that have been empty since the removal of the Central Freeway.
An All-of-the-Above Approach to Addressing the Homelessness Crisis
Supervisor Brown has experienced housing insecurity herself and knows that it isn’t a simple issue that can be solved with a single solution. She is currently pursuing both local and state-level solutions to homelessness to address each aspect of the problem, from youth homelessness to drug addiction to mental illness. She is taking an all-of-the-above approach to solve the homelessness crisis: Neighborhood shelters, day resting places in Churches, and a Navigation Center in District 5.
Bringing Navigation Centers and Local Solutions to District 5
Supervisor Brown is actively working to bring a navigation center for transitional-aged youth to District 5 to help them exit the cycle of homelessness and address an acute need in our neighborhoods. We also need to find new ways to transition youth out of navigation centers and into housing. And we must activate daytime resting places like churches and community buildings to give people a place inside to rest, use the restroom, find some peace and quiet, and be able to connect with social services.
Working to bring a navigation center for transitional-aged youth to District 5.
Advocating for local solutions, including neighborhood shelters, daytime resting places, and housing.
Working with city leaders and nonprofit organizations to build new permanent supportive housing.
Successfully fought for bathrooms and better conditions at the First Friendship Church family shelter.
Helped bring better services to the transitional-aged youth living at Booker T. Washington.
Helping Homeless People In Every Way We Can
Additionally, we have too many people left on our streets without resources when resources are plentiful. In addition to navigation centers and other local solutions, we need to accommodate people who live in their vehicles — like Vallie did when she was a kid. That’s why Supervisor Brown proposed and is moving forward with a Vehicular Navigation Center, to create a safe place for people to park, shower, and access services.
Passed legislation to create a Vehicular Navigation Center for people one step away from sleeping on the street.
Worked with Supervisor Mandelman to authorize the creation of a San Francisco conservatorship program to expand drug and mental health treatment.
Making City services more responsive to neighborhoods and people experiencing homelessness.
Solving Homelessness with Housing
Ultimately, the real solution to homelessness is long-term housing in District 5 and throughout our city. Navigation centers and daytime resting places are just the right first step. We need to create more housing at all levels, including transitional, affordable, and market rate, or we will simply keep pushing people out of their homes, onto our streets, and out of our neighborhoods.
Creating more housing at all levels of affordability.
Working to ensure new housing construction includes affordable and supportive housing that can help get our homeless population off the street.
Making Transportation Better, Safer, Cleaner, and More Reliable
Supervisor Brown has proven to be a true leader on public transportation, and pedestrian and bike safety.
Demanding that Muni Operators Are Paid a Living Wage
When the Muni shortage hit our entire city hard last year during Twin Peaks tunnel maintenance and the entire city experienced the Muni Meltdown, Supervisor Brown called a hearing and got to the bottom of the problem: despite capital investment in new train cars and infrastructure, we are failing to pay our drivers a living wage and they are leaving for better paying jobs elsewhere. Vallie uncovered that during their first five years of employment, drivers aren’t even paid enough to qualify for affordable housing in San Francisco. That’s a disgrace, and she demanded that Muni pay drivers a fair wage, both because they deserve it, and because we all rely on public transportation to get to work and move around the city.
Uncovered operator shortages at MUNI — over 400 operators short every day — and is pushing to hire more drivers and pay a living wage so Muni can improve hiring and retention rates.
Investing in and growing our transportation systems and options available and working to improve the reliability and safety of public transit and other existing alternatives.
Working to ensure train safety on our new MUNI trains, including proper door functioning.
Working for Safer Streets for All
Pedestrian and bike safety is a constant issue in our car-centric culture, and while San Francisco has made great strides over the past 30 years — with District 5 leading the way, with the wiggle and other pedestrian safety improvements — the truth is that we still have a long way to go. That’s why Supervisor Brown is taking a block-by-block approach to identifying dangerous intersections, roadways, and hazards to continue making District 5 the best place to walk or be on a bike in San Francisco.
Working to achieve Vision Zero with lifesaving pedestrian and bicyclists improvements to our infrastructure.
Supporting the creation of 20 new miles of protected bike lanes in the next two years throughout District 5 and the entire city.
Demanding increased enforcement on reckless drivers endangering cyclists and pedestrians.
A Cleaner and Greener Environment for San Francisco Neighborhoods
Supervisor Brown has been a longtime environmental activist in San Francisco, from addressing environmental hazards in the Bayview, to curbing plastic bag use with the first-in-the-nation plastic bag ban, to simply picking up trash around the neighborhood.
Banning Plastic Bags — Twice — and Expanding Access to Clean Energy
Over the years, Vallie has helped craft San Francisco’s landmark environmental legislation, including working for over a decade to help create CleanPowerSF, and worked on our first-in-the-nation Plastic Bag Ban. Now Vallie is working to create Plastic Bag Ban 2.0, which will ban plastic in favor of compostable bags in the produce section, and increase the cost of single use bags to $0.25.
Expanding our access to renewable energy with CleanPowerSF, which Vallie worked for 10 years to help create. Over 350,000 households have signed up, but we need to do more to get every household in San Francisco into the program.
Worked on the nation’s first plastic bag ban and now working on Plastic Bag Ban 2.0 to ban non-recyclable produce bags and to raise the bag fee from 10¢ to 25¢.
Fighting Against Climate Change at the Local Level
Vallie has always been focused on the environmental issues that face us directly, including our impact on climate change and our local environment, and is working to reach carbon neutral status by 2050. When we act locally to reduce our impact on our environment, from waste output to planting local trees, we are helping fight climate change and sea level rise.
Cosponsoring legislation to mandate commercial spaces over 50,000 sq. ft. to use 100% renewable energy by 2030.
Introduced legislation to mandate multi-family residential buildings over 50,000 sq. ft. report energy usage to the City.
Improving streetscapes, bringing trees and new green spaces to our neighborhoods.
Investing in Our Neighborhoods
From her start as an activist in District 5, Supervisor Brown knows the importance of clean streets and thriving merchant corridors. Vallie founded the Lower Haight Neighborhood Association and co-founded the Lower Haight Merchants and Neighbors Association to organize neighborhood cleanups and support local businesses. Vallie is also keenly aware of the benefits small businesses provide for our communities as local gathering places. She is working to address the problems that vacant storefronts cause in our neighborhoods, attracting blight, graffiti, and weakening our sense of community.
Created some of San Francisco’s first parklets and community farmers markets.
Worked with Mayor London Breed to propose $9 million in new investments to strengthen small business programs with access to capital through low-interest loans, resources for storefront and tenant improvements, and new funding to provide small businesses with financial assistance for regulatory fees.
Rebuilding playgrounds across District 5, including in the Hamilton, Hayes Valley, Panhandle and Wester Addition neighborhoods to make our parks more livable and vibrant.
Making our parks and open spaces more ecologically in tune with California’s climate and the changes it is undergoing — like in Alamo Square Park — with drought-resistant, native plants in our parks and open spaces.
A More Equitable & Just San Francisco
In her decades as an activist and now as our Supervisor, Vallie Brown has fought for gender and racial equality in District 5 and across San Francisco. Vallie grew up in poverty and lost both her parents by 14. She brings a unique perspective to the Board of Supervisors which is currently only made of three other women out of eleven members.
FIGHTING FOR GENDER EQUITY
At a time when women's rights are under assault nationally, Vallie Brown is leading the fight locally and standing up for reproductive rights and gender equity.
Organized San Francisco’s leading women’s groups, Planned Parenthood Northern California, and hundreds of women and allies to rally to protect reproductive rights.
Passed legislation to limit the City and County of San Francisco from doing official business with any state that passes an abortion ban.
Passed a resolution urging the US Department of Health and Human Services to rescind new Title X regulations that will impede access to essential, time-sensitive health care for low-income women and teens in SF. Further supported the decision of the City of San Francisco to withdraw from the federal Title X Family Planning grant program, in protest of the Trump’s changes to the rules that govern Title X funding.
Prioritized 70% of her non-profit budget allocations to women and women of color-led organizations supporting vulnerable communities in the 2019-2020 City Budget.
Funded critical programs to provide housing support, shelter, and comprehensive, culturally-sensitive health services to high-risk LGBT youth.
Secured a landmark investment for Planned Parenthood will provide on-site safety and security for the San Francisco health center for the next 2 years.
Passed a resolution recognizing May 5 as the national Day of Awareness for Honoring Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women.
WORKING TO END SYSTEMIC BIASES WITH A NEW OFFICE OF RACIAL EQUITY
Supervisor Brown and Supervisor Sandra Lee Fewer are working together to create an Office of Racial Equity to shed a light on generations of injustice and put an end to systemic racial biases in San Francisco’s public and private sectors.
Deliver and report a biannual Equity Report Card on how San Francisco is ensuring racial equity in housing, wealth, transit, health, the environment, and criminal justice.
Create a racial equity policy analysis tool for legislation introduced at the Board of Supervisors to illuminate the impact of policy on communities of color-- before a public vote on policy.
Working with the community to devise with policy recommendations for the Mayor and Board of Supervisors on policies addressing racial equity.
FINANCIAL EQUITY FOR WORKING PEOPLE & FAMILIES
As Supervisor, Vallie Brown is fighting to ensure equitable access to retail, business, and banking.
Passed a ban on brick-and-mortar retailers from not accepting cash—one of the first in the nation—preventing discrimination against unbanked youth, seniors, and people of color.
Fighting for a publicly chartered bank for San Francisco to close the unbanked gap and create equitable access to credit and lending.
Expanded the SF Working Families Credit, giving more low-income families access to a local earned income tax credit of up to $500.