tv Government Access Programming SFGTV August 4, 2018 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT
in fact, actually, why don't we do this, instead of making it a consolidation of the general orders, because those general orders already exist. what we will say, if the chief will come back to the commission for consideration, a planning department that defines a peer support unit specifically considering the following. >> repeat that? >> the only deliverable in this document will be within x amount of days of the adoption of this resolution, the chief of the department shall deliver to the commission, for its consideration, a planning -- something of this effect, a planning document. describing a state-of-the-art peer-support unit, consistent with this resolution and setting forth minimum standards of the peer support unit
considering the following. and that's when it gets into a and a-i. >> commissioner veronese, i like this, i would like it to be brought back, cleaned up, shortened so we can vote on it. i don't think we are ready to vote tonight. at least i'm not ready to vote tonight on this resolution. >> i'll do that. >> i would like to see it cleaned up, shortened, made more of a set of considerations and not mandates and then let's look at it at the next meeting. is that agreeable? >> yes, i will do that
consistent with the understanding of -- >> we will take some action at the next meeting. >> i would like to hear from the chief of the department, please. thank you. >> let me finish with commissioner veronese. finish your thought. >> i believe commissioner hardeman has been sitting silently and patiently as well. >> i'm not in any hurry. >> i think it's important to have the chief speak first. give us your input. >> sure, i'm happy to take any specific questions. it's been a long day, i might be able to be more concise if i get specific questions. commissioner veronese, thank you very much for putting this forward. i've been a long-time supporter of the stress unit and i've worked with a number of members including captain griffin, we have two new members, nazareta and mahoney.
certainly i would like their input, as well as griffin, i know retired member christy, endeavoring to look at building on what we have, i really think is a great model. i do. i know there are a number of departments, i know commissioner veronese, you mentioned long beach, they are very progressive. but there are departments that don't have full time members that are firefighters and/or medics that are truly peer members. they have other alternatives. but i think with a model program, could it be built and improved? absolutely. that's what i think the spirit of the resolution is. having said that, i would endeavor to get some of the people that are doing the work to weigh in. particularly our two new members, as they are sort of the future of the department and they have time left in the department they aren't going to be retiring any time soon, to really engage them, as well as some of our subject matter
experts that have previous time there. what i would envision would be forming a work group. the stress unit, peer support unit does work closely and report to deputy chief over homeland security. chief cochrane under the direction of the deputy chief, chief nicholson. so six months, i know, basically sort of a negotiation with commissioner aliota veronese was ambitious. six months is tight. not to let it tread off your presentation might make more sense to make it as comprehensive as possible as we reach out to other departments and so forth. it's certainly a project i look forward to working on and
seeing if we can improve. i'm sure we can. but we have a good model. i do like the idea and i know you brought it up, president cleaveland, it's important that not everyone, i will use myself as an example, i have regular contact with members of the stress unit. i have nothing but total respect for the work they do. personally, if i'm, and this is just me, and everyone deals with their stress in different ways. personally, if i'm having struggles, whether work-related, home-related, whatever-related, me, the person i am, i choose not to talk to someone within the department, because i'm a very private person and i totally trust confidentiality and so forth, but for me, having sort of a third party and having that anonymity, maybe going to a mental health network, where no one really knows who i am, maybe they do, but they aren't as closely tied in, to have layers built in, because everyone processes things
differently, or is more willing to share. that peer support is amazing helpful for some and the only person will you go to. for others, maybe it's too close. to have realization that people process their stress in different ways, but the bottom line is, to your point, having the resources available when the person needs it and wants to reach out. i think we have done a better job over the years instead of being reactive. often time it's was a very informal way. hey chief, or firefighter so and so, please give someone call, he is struggling. he is having a marital problem, a substance abuse problem, he is having a hard time with the call we just responded to. that happens and it happens very productively, but to your point, representative cleveland, we recognize it whether people want it or not. in there's a traumatic scene, we automatically send a team
out for debriefing. the natural response for people who do what we do is okay, i'm fine, and we move onto the next call. we have formalized that well, i think, over the last few years. certainly, i will commit to working towards taking a look at what we have and seeing what we can do to rework it, or add to it, and i'll have to put a team together, but i'm confident we can do so. and i'm happy to answer any questions. >> thank you, chief. commissioner covington, did you want to say something? or did you want to go to commissioner hardeman. i see your name was up there first. >> yes, that's before commissioner hardeman chimed in. i think this is a very valuable discussion that we are having. and i think we are moving in the right direction. the chief needs input. she needs input from, you know,
a variety of sources and a variety of people. she perhaps will need continued direction from you as well. they all had commissioners involved and still have commissioners involved, as well as people at various ranks within the department. and i think that's a valuable thing. we really have to make sure that people feel included in this process. that all of this doesn't have to come out of the chief's head. that there is a meeting of the minds, as to how best to proceed. so i think we are on the right track. >> it's a collaborative process. >> yes, definitely.
>> commissioner hardeman? >> yes, thank you, mr. president. commissioner alioto veronese, i'm just really surprised hearing the names involved helping you draft this, they want to hire a medical doctor, specializing in treatment of mental illness to be a full time employee of the fire department. i don't understand it. if you are saying drug addiction is a mental illness, which it's not, it's an addiction, some people may refer to it, but i think that is pushing it too over the edge. i just don't understand that. is that a group decision?
who -- without naming anyone's name but how did that surface? it shocks me. >> would you like me to respond? >> yeah, how did that come about? >> there are departments that have looked to the assistant of different types of physicians to form their units. some departments actually have some within their units. i'm not saying that we need one. that's not what this says. and so, it's very clear to me that the language and the format of this document is misleading people on this commission. because that's not what this document says. this document says, what this document really says, is there are experts out there who know more about addiction, that know more about suicide, that know more about the effects, the symptoms of p.t.s.d., more than
yourself, myself, we're not experts at this. the point of this document is who are those experts? identify those experts. give them the input. essentially create the working group that commissioner covington was talking about. and maybe that's why this document should be more clear. because the document is more of an instruction to create a working group, figure out who the experts should be and tell the commission at the end of the day what that unit looks like so we could make it a part of a budgeting process going forward. so i apologize for misleading you. this document doesn't say in it that we need a full time employee that's a physician, i don't know that's appropriate at all. i don't have the expertise in this genre to know whether or not that's true. it may be true. it may not be true. i don't have those expertise. i'm sorry i mislead you to think somebody in some group i
talked to said we absolutely needed that. no, that's not true. but we should be consulting the experts in this area that are doctors. and frankly, you may believe that drug addiction is not a symptom of mental illness. i don't believe that. in some circumstances. that's why these conversations are important. right, commissioner? with all due respect, this is an amazing conversation because there are commissions and departments all over this world that are not having this conversation. so if we don't vote on this tonight, in my mind we have made progress, because we are talking about issues. if you talk to people who actually had addictions within this department, you may find those addictions have something to do with some p.t.s.d. injury they have had.
and as a result of that, once we have people that are looking at this issue, commissioner, we may find that the alcoholism, or the pill addiction, or the oxycontin addiction, or whatever addiction may exist with any particular member of the department, right, some people prefer to go to third parties to talk to people. some people will only talk to people that are firefighters. some cops will only talk to people who are cops because they fully understand them, right? some people like to be more anonymous. some people will turn to alcoholism, pills and other addictions. right? and all of that is more than you and i could ever understand. but this document is basically asking us, is asking the chief, which is really the only thing we could do. our authority, the public should know this. if you are watching at home, the commission's authority, does not go beyond the chief. we cannot tell any of the
members of the command staff what to do, when to do it. the chief is the chief of the department. she runs this department. we set policy for this department. and so what i'm trying to do is set a policy this is an issue that is important to us, we would like the chief to look into it. this is something that needs to be explored and nobody is talking about it. they are starting to talk about it. and we're talking about it now. but i think that when the report comes back to us, once we have a model that the commission will accept, and the report comes back to us a year from now, or six months from now, or whatever it is, i think we will all be surprised what the state-of-the-art unit looks like, it's not, with respect to the chief and all the efforts so far, it's not what we currently have. >> well i hate to give you the bad news, but i've been going to aa meetings with firefighters for 42 years. and police officers.
and i wrote my unions addiction policy way back 35 years ago. i have dissected it, rewrote it, had reports given to me monthly on every hour, every minute of every conversation, practically. and discovered that most people's problem is, is drugs and alcohol, without question. also what people worry about, it's problems at home, children, wife, domestic violence. a member could call up just like you could do now, could you call alex, ask for anything. with my union, retired, my members were able to call up and ask questions about anything. i need to refinance my house, i need to get an auto loan, where is the best place.
that's what it ended up being, more than an addiction recovery. my union, if you look at the suicides, and you take the suicides nationwide, they are fishermen, farmers, lumber workers, factory workers, construction workers, carpenters, miners, electricians, maintenance workers, mechanics, repairers, installers, factory workers, production workers, architects, engineers. then firefighters, police officers, and protective services, probably sheriff and etc. and rent-a-cops. and then artists, designers, athletes and entertainers that's what my union was made up of.
almost identical suicide rate was firefighters. so i know a lot about this issue. i have spent many, many, 42 years. i could sit down and write a document that would blow your mind and you would say, that sounds good to me. so i do know some worker does know a lot. >> commissioner, that's the great thing about these commissions. i didn't know that, if i had known that six months ago, i would have put you to work. >> i don't advertise it, but i thought it was a good time. >> commissioner, i respect your experiences. we all come from different experiences and have different things to add to these commissions. that's why these commissions are great and that's why they are unique and that's why they are important. i have deep respect for every member of this commission and their experiences. i don't mean to down play and i don't think you took my comments as down playing your experiences.
for sure i don't have that knowledge. but i appreciate it deeply. i think that's why this is so important. i think that's a very good example of why this conversation is so important. because we all have different experiences, we know this problem exists, right? we all have different experiences. all i'm trying to do is find a better solution to it. that's it. so when the chief comes back, if we pass something, if the chief comes back six months ago, you could say through your experiences, no, i don't agree with this, because of this. i think the stress unit should have no doctor. but the point is, and i think everyone here would agree, the point is, it's an important issue to look at. so let's look at it, let's put the right language in this resolution so that we can have the chief take a look at this
issue, do a deep dive into this issue, come back to us whenever that date is, so we can budget to deal in a more appropriate way than the way we are currently dealing with. that's all this is. >> vice president nakajo. >> commissioner veronese, i want to thank you for the hard work and the passion. about a year ago when you came, one of the first statements you stressed with your fundraiser was in this regard of stress of the members in terms of the regard. at this particular time i would like to acknowledge and appreciate the commissioners on this commission as well as the chief and everyone of you command staff, and every member in this audience that has been with us for the last three hours. i totally agree with
commissioner covington, a good, healthy, robust discussion. and i appreciate you being in it at the forefront so we could discuss it. for me, in terms as well, with the contract question that came about for individuals, it's about options. and it's about options to be able to have the options. and of course, within our own family and our own house, i think we want to reach out to our members in terms of our own, but i also share the feeling that sometimes i like to go to someone who doesn't know me at all. because sometimes self esteem and guilt is tough enough when one asks for help. so for me, a healthy discussion around options is really important. just one question in terms of logistics. chief hayes-white, who is the administrator of the
program. >> the stress unit is built on a lot of confidentiality, there's an ability for members of the stress unit to come directly to me. if there's something that comes to my attention, we are a paramilitary organization. members are given a lot of latitude and they deserve that latitude. there's a lot of trust that goes along with that, having said that they report to the assistant deputy chief overseeing homeland security, in this case michael cochrane. >> that's what i wanted to hear. the bottom line, responsibility and we have a structure. i'm not saying the structure is sufficient, because obviously there's concerns. and again commissioner, i appreciate you being in this conceptually all the things we are talking about. i can support that, the detail things we are talking about, the budget issues and everything we talked about. thank you for the clarity in terms of the intention of the resolution.
when i first read it, it certainly sounded like we were creating a new unit. not that there is anything wrong with it but i think this calls for the response we as commissioners have, that is oversight. that's purely on the level i dialogue, i personally enjoy the dialogue and the frank discussion among all of us and i thank you all for your time this evening. thank you mr. president. >> thank you, mr. vice president. commissioner veronese you are going to take this resolution and streamline it, bring it back to us in a couple of weeks, for reconsideration. is that correct? >> yes. i will do that. >> all right. i don't know if we need to vote on that. do we need a vote? i don't think so. all right. very good. thank you. we will move to the next item, madam secretary.
>> item 8, agenda for the next and future fire commission meetings. >> well we have one item already. for the next meeting. commissioners, any input here? any public comment? >> i want to congratulate commissioner veronese's cousin on winning the british open. he looks like your cousin. >> does he? >> anybody disagree? there's italian heritage there, connection, he has got to be sicilian. >> i will look him up. i wasn't aware of it. >> this is the win of what? >> british open. he is italian. >> oh, right. >> i think we wanted to put the chief's residence on the next meeting's agenda to discuss
that. >> i have the chief's resident's update. we do have a closed session settlement that needs to be approved. are we going to put the mayor's transition update on the next -- >> i don't think we will be ready at that point. >> and commissioners, just as a reminder, i will not be present for 8-8. deputy chief gonzalez is a good fill-in for sure. he is limited in one aspect and that is of the chief's residence, he doesn't have sort of the knowledge i might have but chief rivera is very well versed on it. i just wanted to raise that for you. >> okay. >> any other commissioners have any additional items to add? >> just a clarification, between now and the next meeting, are we going to be looking for a place for the
retreat? we have the google doc that will be coming around. we will need a facilitator for that meeting. usually at retreats you do have a facilitator who is the person who keeps things moving. >> and does an agenda need to be posted for that? >> yes, it would have to be, yes. >> like a special meeting? >> yes. >> all right. the chief and i will discuss that and come up with a facilitator, if you have input on a facilitator. i know one person that might be useful as a facilitator. >> okay, great. >> we will get a facilitator. >> anybody in the department you could use? >> all right. very good.
we are here at the urban center on mission street in san francisco. it's a wonderful display. a little house in the urban center exhibition center that shows what it's like in a home in san francisco after an earthquake. one of the major issues that we are going to face after earthquakes are fire hazard. we are happy to have the fire marshall join us today. >> thank you. my pleasure. >> we talk about the san francisco earthquake that was a fire that mostly devastated the city. how do we avoid that kind of problem. how can we reduce fire hazard? >> the construction was a lot different. we don't expect what we had then. we want to make
sure with the gas heaters that the gas is shut off. >> if you shut it off you are going to have no hot water or heat. be careful not to shut it off unless you smell gas. >> absolutely because once you do shut it off you should have the utility company come in and turn it back on. here is a mock up of a gas hear the on a house. where would we find the gas meter? >> it should be in your garage. everyone should be familiar with where the gas meter is. >> one of the tools is a wrench, a crescent wrench. >> yes. the crescent wrench is good and this is a perfect example of how to have it so you can loosen it up and use it
when you need it. >> okay. let's go inside to talk about fire safety. many of the issues here relate to fire, for example, we have a little smoke detector and i see you brought one here, a carbon monoxide smoke detector. >> this is a combination of smoke and carbon monoxide detector. they are required in single homes now and in apartment buildings. if gas appliance is not burning properly this will alert you before the fumes buildup and will affect you negatively. >> this is a battery powered? >> this is a battery powered and it has a 10 year battery
life. a lot of times you may have one or the other. if you put in just a carbon monoxide detector, it's important to have one of these too. every house should have a fire extinguisher, yes. >> one thing people expect to do when the power goes out after an earthquake about using candles. what would you recommend? >> if you have a battery operated candle would be better to use. this kind of a candle, you wouldn't want it in an area where it can cause a fire or aftershock that it doesn't rollover. you definitely want to have this in a non-combustible surface.
>> now, here we have our stove. after a significant earthquake we expect that we may have gas disrupted and so without gas in your home, how are you going to cook? >> well, i wouldn't recommend cooking inside of the house. you have to go outside and use a portable stove or something else. >> so it wouldn't be safe to use your fireplace to cook? >> not at first. you should check it by a professional first. >> outside should be a safe place to cook as long as you stay away from buildings and doors and windows. >> yes. that will be fine. >> here we have some
alternative cooking areas. >> you can barbecue and if you have a regular propane bark could barbecue. >> thank you for joining us. and thanks for this terrific space that you have in this exhibition space and thanks for helping san francisco stay >> good morning, everyone. i'm barbara ga sierra, the director of health and i'm be your m.c. this morning and i want to thank you all for being here today for this program announcement. and i want to thank victoria manner, one of our incredible care facilities, for hosting us this morning. and so we have several distinguished leaders with us this morning. and our mayor london breed, we hope to have our president of the board of supervisors malia cohen. and our new supervisor rafael
mandelman and the owner of the victorian manner bernadette joseph. bernadette is the second generation of owners of this type of facilities and we really appreciate her family's commitment to the communities that we serve. our residential care homes are very important form of housing in san francisco, providing compassionate support for our community who live independently. the department of health, the department of aging, and i want to acknowledge that we have our department heads with us today. and both departments depend on these homes and facilities to ensure our clients are safe and that they get the care that they need. so we're so fortunate to work and live in a city that cares -- cares for its most vulnerable community members. our strongest leaders for this is our own mayor, mayor london breed. mayor breed is committed to ensuring those facing behavioral
and health challenges are provided care and housing that they need. so please welcome mayor london breed. [applause] >> mayor breed: thank you, barbara, and thank you, everyone, for being here today. i'm really excited to be here and as mayor i have made it clear that one of my top priorities is to not only address many of the challenges that we face with so many people struggling with mental illness, but, more importantly, to address issues of homelessness. we have to make sure that we invest in preventing homelessness in the first place. and we know that this particular facility, along with so many others throughout our city, continue to struggle financially. they struggle financially due to lack of funding from the state, from the federal government, and what that means is that time and time again in our city we need to figure out ways in which we
can continue to support the great work that this facility is doing and others like it. so today i'm really proud to announce that we're investing over $1 million over the next two years from one-time revenue to stabilize residential care facilities that support our most vulnerable population throughout san francisco. [applause] and, let me tell you what it will do. it will help 37 residential care facilities and house more than 350 people in our city, including many of our seniors. some of these people suffer with serious behavioral health and medical issues. many have a history of homeless homelessness. and we know again that the best solution is it to prevent homelessness in the first place. one of the care providers that
support one of the ones that will receive funding as we said before is victoria manor which we are here today, located in district 5, which is now represented by supervisor brown. this place has 90 beds and it serves 26 clients for the department of public health. the facilities like these have been under strain as i said in terms of lack of funding and the city currently spends $2.5 million through the department of public health to provide supplemental funding to close the spending gap. and i want to, again, i appreciate barbara g garcia for identifying where the needs are and making sure that we are using city resources in the most efficient way to support this community. but this is a complex issue which requires a holistic approach to look at now and the financial challenges of the future. and this additional funding is a down payment and demonstrates
our commitment to ensure that these providers can care for and to serve our community. the department of aging and adult services is convening a working group along with the department of public health and the office of economic and workforce development to analyze the current demand and study options to meet the needs of the future throughout this city. i expect to hear recommendations by the end of this year and until then this funding will help to ensure that we continue to serve hundreds of san francisco residents who would otherwise be at risk of homelessness and who would otherwise not be able to care for themselves. i want to thank the supervisors who are here today for their tireless work in preparing this coming fiscal year's budget, who is now our board president and was leader during this budget time, she was also the finance chair, supervisor malia cohen. and i am hoping to sign this
into law hopefully soon and i have sent a letter to president cohen outlining my support for this funding and how we're able to move forward in our shared priorities. we know that there's a lot of work to do and it takes a village. it takes a lot of our departments it takes members of the board of supervisors, and i'm glad to be joined by someone who has been my partner although he's just joined the board of supervisors, supervisor rafael mandelman who has really been a champion for issues around mental health. we're so grateful for his support here today. and i also want to take this opportunity to acknowledge roma guy who has also been an incredible advocate behind mental health reforms and pushing for more mental health stabilization beds in our city to, again, care for our most vulnerable population of citizens in san francisco. with that i'd like to provide an opportunity for the president of the board, president malia
cohen, to say a few words. [applause] >> thank you, and good morning, ladies and gentlemen. what a wonderful day, mayor breed, also a fantastic start. this is exciting news. i'm thrilled to join the mayor as well as my colleagues, supervisor mandelman and supervisor brown, as well as my partners in the department of public health that are standing up here with me, to announce this $100 million for board and care. san francisco has always been a city that has been committed to supporting our most vulnerable residents. you know what, we haven't stopped yet. we're actually recommitting and reaffirming that commitment today. this year i'm proud that the -- that our budget process was, quite frankly, most transparent. and policy driven. a collaborative process that we have seen to date. in the month leading up to the budget we spoke with community
activists, we have spoken with our residents, we polled our residents and, of course, we surveyed the colleagues on the board of supervisors. resoundingly without a doubt we have heard that homelessness is a top priority for particularly those who are suffering mental health issues. we have a responsibility to keep our residents, to help them to remain in healthy condition, and it's a top priority of ours and we want to have them in a safe place to live and access to care and treatment. and so it is actually through our policy-driven process that we allocated $47 million in additional funding for homelessness. i think that is an important figure to note. the board of supervisors has directed over $4 million towards housing and homeless solutions and it's going to manifest itself in several ways, ways that you will be able to see instantly. first, in housing subsidies for families and seniors, mental
health services and street medicine teams, patch the funding for residential care facilities. that's a critical one. patch 23u7din funding for residl care facilities. and also for those facing eviction. so this additional million dollars for the board and care facilities is without a doubt welcomed. it's a welcomed investment to help 355 san franciscoians facing displacement and also dealing with mental illness. this is directly aligned with the board's budget priorities and our commitment to ending homelessness and ensuring that our most vulnerable residents are safe, healthy and housed. thank you very much, ladies and gentlemen. [applause] >> thank you, president cohen, it was one of the best budget processes i have been involved in so thank you.
we are so fortunate today to have our board member from this district, i have worked with her for many years and we're very proud to bring her up to the podium. [applause] >> thank you. thank you to everyone that is here today. the residents of victoria manor. and also thank you mayor breed for finding this additional million funding to help our board and care facilities throughout the city. and president cohen and supervisor mandelman, thank you for supporting this. i think that it's so important. i have to thank roma guy and barbara garcia because anytime that i have questions they're the boots on the ground and i call them. i want to just thank you for all of of the years that you have been supportive in giving advice. i have a personal story. a neighbor of mine actually was losing her place, her roommate situation because of her mental
health issues. when i saw her on the street she told me, this was almost 13, 14 years ago. and she told me her social worker suggested that she go into a room and care board facility. she was really frightened. i think that she had no idea what they were about, and neither did i, but then i saw her months later and she was so well taken care of. she was happy. and she told me how much this really meant to her. and she had a family -- i think she was an eighth resident in care. and i have been very supportive of the board and care. because if it's the right situation for that right person it's vital. it's taking care of our most vulnerable residents and we need to step up. it's part of our housing stock, and i said that affordable housing is one of my priorities.
this is affordable housing for our most vulnerable residents. i want to also thank all of the angels out there that take care of our residents here. and thank bernie joseph for being one of those people, second generation, that isn't saying i can't do it, you know, because a lot of people -- a lot of people age out in these board and cares and they can't do it anymore. they don't have someone to replace them. and i just really think that it's amazing that it's a family affair because they are a family here. so i want to thank everyone for coming out and i'm very excited moving forward of how we look creatively at supporting our most vulnerable residents. thank you. [applause] >> thank you supervisor brown. our newest board member rafael mandelman, and in recent conversations with supervisors he's very interested in looking at housing, skill nursing and residential care facilities i
know is one of his top priorities. so supervisor mandelman, thank you so much. [applause] >> good morning, everybody. i am incredibly pleased to be here to support mayor breed and her team, director garcia, for all of great work you have done to make this a possibility. and for identifying these additional funds to help to meet the critical need. decades ago when california set itself on the path towards deinstitutionalization and closing our state mental hospitals we were promised a network of community care facilities. i think that we all know that that promise was never kept. but to the incident that it was kept it was through places like this in the community where folks could get the care that they need. today in san francisco we have lost and are at risk of further loss of dozens, if not hundreds, of board and care facilities that provide house askin housine
for our most vulnerable neighbors. i have spoken frequently and over the last year about my mother and her struggles with mental illness. she was housed for most of her adult life in board and care facilities. some were good, some were not so good. but they were essential to keeping her housed. make no mistake but for facilities like this one, hundreds, if not thousands of additional san franciscoians would be in hospitals or jails or on our streets. so as we work to move the thousands of currently unhoused homeless san franciscoians off the streets and into care it's critical that we stabilize our stock of board and care facilities and create more care options for those who need them. i like that the mayor referred to this as a down payment and i think that is the right way to think of it. it's an important first step in addressing a need that i imagine that we will be grappling with
for most of your administration but that i have complete confidence that working together with roma guy telling us what to do, we will be able to solve. so i'm very glad to be here and very grateful to be included. thank you. [applause] >> thank you, supervisor mandelman. i just wanted to acknowledge bernie's family, her husband and daughter are here and i know that it's a family -- a family affair for this project. so i do want to thank you for all of the work and the support that you give to bernie to provide such a beautiful location for our clients. one of the important processes for our clients is social support. and so to be together and to learn together and to support each other is one of the important processes and also important contribution that a facility like this provides. so it would be such a great honor and i want to acknowledged
kelly, our transitions director, who really manages with bernie and i heard that she's one of the best negotiators as bernie says, that she does what she is told to. and we are appreciative of both of the teams and so i appreciate you, bernie, and i want to bring you up. [applause] >> good morning. i'm bernadette joseph, the owner and director of operations at victorian manor. thank you, mayor breed, and supervisor cohen and supervisor mandelman and supervisor brown, and director of health garcia, barbara garcia. thank you for being here and for your support for our seniors. here at victorian manor we serve over 90 elderly clients with various needs, including dementia, medical and mental health needs. our home provides a place where seniors can live in the community and be as independent as possible.
we welcome with open hearts and open arms a diverse group of residents, including a frail and vulnerable elderly population and we see every day what a big difference it makes for them to have the right place to live with the full activity program that enriches their lives. thank you mayor breed for recognizing the work of residential care facilities for the elderly like victorian manor. the new funding will help us to make ends meet. and to continue to serve the seniors that we care so much about. we are happy that the city is also looking into long-term solutions to keep the facilities like ours, residential care facilities for the elderly, to have them remain in san francisco. so, thank you so much. [applause] >> thank you, that's the end of our program. and i'm sure that the press may
have questions and i'll leave that to the press. thank you. >> any questions... anything off topic we'll take on the side. >> can you say specifically what the funding will go towards, is it services or more beds? >> one of the important things that we have done with the facilities is that we have provided them with an extra amount per day for the bed and part of that is because we have individuals with different levels of need and that really helps for the staffing of the beds, and making sure that the right staff is for the right client and their needs. so this will provide extra dollars for a per bed space that we pay for and we work that out with the owners so they have the right staffing. bernadette, if you would like to add anything? [laughter].
>> where is the money coming from? >> the department will be working with the board of supervisors and the mayor's office for the one-time dollars that the mayor allocated for this. >> that money goes towards staff wages and health care? >> and as you know we pay per diem per day and that extra dollars the staffing has. >> can you talk more about why this is a piece of the puzzle that deserves the extra money? there's a lot of other things out there that need help as well. >> i think that we don't spend enough time talking about stopping something from happening in the first place. when you think about the amount of money it takes whether it's wages for employees, or an increase in the dollars that it takes to feed people, whether it's additional services, physical therapy, social services and things that go into
actually taking care of some of the individuals who are in board and care, the costs are going up. then what happens when there's a huge gap, that means most likely that sometimes they can't necessarily take care of all of the clients that they have. and the reason why this is important is because if they have a budget shortfall then that means that they go from 90 beds to maybe even 80 beds so they could at least afford to cover the costs of those particular individuals. this is important because where are we going to put 10 people that might be displaced because of a lack of funds? and so in looking at, you know, all of these particular board and care facilities and the increase in costs and the challenges to meet the need, we have to make sure that we keep every single bed. we have to make sure that we do everything that we can to prevent, you know, something from happening in the first place and that is the possibility of losing those beds which means that those people are going to have to go somewhere. and we have to do everything
that we can to make sure that they don't end up on the streets and that's what this is about is prevention. >> any other questions? >> can you explain a little bit about -- i was shocked by the number that we have lost -- it looks like almost 30 of these facilities in the last five years. why that is happening. >> well, it's exactly what mayor breed talked about is the fact -- and also the fact that some of these were family owned and the cost of doing this -- and this is all over california and this is not just san francisco. but the cost of doing these types of facilities, particularly as they depend on the ssfai dollars that comes in doesn't always match the overall cost of the facilities and the services. so it's exactly why we're trying to provide them some stabilization. we started doing this almost 11 years ago really looking at how to work with the residential care facilities in both ways. one, to provide them dollars to serve clients with higher needs
go up a utility supervisor for the distribution system i offer seizing see the personnel that install water maidens and water carbon monoxides i've personal proud to work with city and distribution place whether a fire or main break those folks come on scene and get the job done 3450r7b9 what time they're here to take care of each other and make it so a safe and secure way i was encouraged to learn to deal with the services and breaks and i wanted to move into understanding how to do main connections one the great things that the sfpuc to move to different sections in if you're tdr in learning a different job you have the ability to move up
i courage anyone to step out of their comfortable zone and work on a system as large as a our water system we started from one end and keep on going it's a fascinating job and i'm going to stay here because i'll never learn everything to learn about this system sustainability mission, even though the bikes are very minimal energy use. it still matters where the energy comes from and also part of the mission in sustainability is how we run everything, run our business. so having the lights come on
with clean energy is important to us as well. we heard about cleanpowersf and learned they had commercial rates and signed up for that. it was super easy to sign up. our bookkeeper signed up online, it was like 15 minutes. nothing has changed, except now we have cleaner energy. it's an easy way to align your environmental proclivities and goals around climate change and it's so easy that it's hard to not want to do it, and it doesn't really add anything to the bill.