- every 10 years the city redraws the boundaries of the 11 districts that make up the city of SF
- Jtown has always been a part of District 5 (Western Addition)
- Jan ’12 a map came out showing the new D5 boundary at GEARY…thus splitting up jtown from D5, and rosa parks jbbp, Buchanan YMCA, and the st francis co ops
- some community members went to speak out at the Redistricting Task Force’s (RTF)
- RTF moved the northern boundary of D5 up to PINE St. ON THE SPOT….YAAAY!
- but wait….
- JCYC, Nichiren Buddhist Church, and St. Benedict’s Parish at St. Francis Xavier Japanese Catholic Church are on the NORTH SIDE OF PINE…thus they are STILL IN D2
- Chibi Chan Preschool (where many jtown kids went) and the Westside Courts are also left out
- …well that stinks…
- and NOW HERE WE ARE…LET’S DO SOMETHING
- “adding” jcyc, chibichan, and the other elements are NOT AN OPTION…THEY ARE A MUST…JCYC, CHIBICHAN ARE JAPANTOWN…just as much as you all ARE JTOWN…
- SO I ask you this…
- Please sign the attached LETTER…FORWARD THE LETTER TO ALL OF YOUR PEOPLE…HAVE THEM SIGN IT…
- TURN IN THE LETTER IN TO THE JCCCNC by FAX (415)567-4222, EMAIL email@example.com, WALK it IN 1840 Sutter St, SF, CA 94115, POST OFFICE, CARRIER PIGEON….by MARCH 16th
- Please sign the online petition… http://www.change.org/petitions/san-francisco-redistricting-task-force-adopt-new-district-5-borders-that-will-include-all-of-japantown
- Join nihonmachiROOTS as we fight for JTOWN…follow us in our WEEK OF ACTION! March 11-March 17http://www.japantownnow.com/events
- Follow us on FACEBOOK http://www.facebook.com/nihonmachiROOTS
- IF YOU ARE A SPEAKER…then be heard at the following RTF MEETINGS
- TODAY, March 7 @6pm @City Hall Room 406
- Monday, March 12 @ 6pm @ West Portal School 5 Lenox Way
- Saturday, March 17 @10am @ ELLA HUTCH COMMUNITY CENTER 1050 McAllister St(THIS IS THE D5 MEETING) Let’s ROLL OUT in NUMBERS!
I ask you all to help us out…this whole process will not benefit any one entity within the community…
IT’S FOR THE WHOLE COMMUNITY!
Below is more background information on all that is going on.
P.S. Don’t be afraid for the future of the jtown community…help DEFINE IT
This e-mail / map is for written presentation to the Task Force, either electronically, by mail or in person. It includes information on the sites of interest that remain the proposed boundary.
Please read/review and feel free to distribute and forward to the Task Force.
D5 Northern Boundary Map: Feb. 27,2012
(a) We thank the RTF for recent changes that brought Hamilton Recreation Center, the Western Addition Library and Booker T. Washington Community Service Center back into D5.
(b) Westside Courts Public Housing shoulde be included with the working and middle income community in D5, not with the more affluent areas in D2 who share little in common and may have different political interests.
(c) Japantown community resources actively being used by the Japantown community and of historic significance should remain connected to Japantown.
(d) our maps consistently show our ability to keep the Wester Addition together while allowing for the needed growth in other districts.
(e) We are the people who live in the area speaking specifically about our neighborhood and how our community is shaped.
Point (a): Thank you RTF!
Thanks to the Task Force members for including Booker T. Washington Community Service Center, Hamilton Rec Center and the WA library in D5, we urge them to also include Westside Court and the few areas of Japan town that should remain in D5.
Point (b): Westside Courts
We advocate for the inclusion of Westside Courts public housing, in D5, arguing that their community of interest lies much closer to D5 than D1 or D2.
Westside Courts shares a community of interest with the Western Addition, not the Richmond or Pacific Heights, because their shared history with the community, socioeconomic similarity, shared schools, community services recreation areas, health clinic, grocery stores are all in D5. The residents want to stay in the neighborhood and keep the Western Addition whole.
Placing Westside Courts residents in other districts weakens them politically when they are placed outside their communities of interest and forced to depend on dissimilar communities for cooperation and support.
Point (c): Chibi-Chan Preschool, St. Benedict’s Parish at St. Francis Xavier Japanese Catholic Church and the Nichiren Buddhist Church
We advocate for a D5 northern boundary at California between Buchanan and Octavia to capture two blocks where the last few Japantown community institutions are located in back together with the rest of D5.
St. Benedict’s and the Nichiren Buddhist Church on California between Buchanan and Octavia remain active houses of worship for the Japanese American community. They are presently located across the street from the proposed D5.
Chibi-Chan Preschool on the block between Pine and Bush/Pierce and Scott remains an active community institution within Japantown. An extension should be made to keep it in D5 while the surrounding areas go to add needed population to D2.
Placing Japantown community resources in districts D1 or D2 weakens D5 residents’ ability to have a voice in controlling the community resources and living areas that they rely on when they are placed under the control of communities who do not use these resources and may not share the interest or desire to maintain and support them.
We recommend bringing these remaining institutions into D5 while the surrounding areas go to add needed population to D2.This will help keep Japantown whole will relieving some of the population pressure on D2.
Point (d): Our Map
Our map keeps our communities of interest together, but we Recognize that the Task Force will need to balance the population of D1 and D2 to accommodate keeping the Western Addition portion of D5 together.
We recommend a map that achieves this by:
Moving the northern border to California, Pine and Sutter Street as shown on the map provided, to include only significant areas of community interest while the other areas go to D2.
Placing Anza Vista residents in D1 from Masonic to Divisadero.
Keep all of Sea Cliff above California Street in D2, based on socioeconomic commonality which differs from the working class, middle income family and individuals in D1 from their more affluent neighbors in D2.
Move the D2/D3 border in Russian Hill out to Jones and the D2/D5 border between Gough and Van Ness down to Ellis. We support Russian Hill residents desire to keep their D2/D3 mix and moving from Leavenworth to Jones gives population to D2 withiut putting all Russian Hill into one district.
Point (d): Tell your story
Tell your personal story about how yourself and our community connections, Westside Courts’ kids going to community events at Ella Hill Hutch, the Japanese language program at Rosa Parks school, etc…
The Fillmore and Japantown areas share a long history of providing cultural homes for communities of color since the days when they were the center of community life for African American and Japanese American San Franciscans. A common history of racial persecution, geographic displacement and uniting our communities to resist discrimination, by building bridges with each other, to maintain community pride and unity continues to this day. Residents of both communities share a past history, but presently continue to share community resources, libraries, housing, schools, recreation centers, places of leisure and worship and development plans for the future that define them as a united community that intends to remain that way.
Previous versions of the Redistricting Task Force Map (RTF) created a District 5 (D5) northern boundary at Geary Boulevard, separating Japantown and Fillmore residents in the area from community member and resources and areas where strong historic ties exist and are presently active in keeping the community together, namely Japantown, Westside Courts Public Housing, Hamilton Recreation Center , Booker T. Washington Community Service Center and the Western Addition Public Library. Placing these residential and community resources in supervisorial districts (in this case, District 2 – D2) separate from the district community which created, maintains and actively utilizes these areas is inconsistent with the mission of the RTF and is a disservice to the residents of the Fillmore and Japantown communities. Geary runs through the united community. It does not divide two separate ones.
Together, Japantown and Fillmore residents and leaders have been consistent in our argument that these area should remain in D5; D1 or D2 is not an alternative for us or our neighbors when other, viable options exist that better serve the interest of keeping our community and other communities of shared interest together. This map (attached) reflect our most recent attempts to demonstrate the desired D5 boundaries, based on continued conversations with residents from neighborhoods in D5 and the surrounding districts.
We thank the Redistricting Task Force’s assistance in keeping our community together and hope the following helps explain our position and our map.
Key Community Areas and Resources
Japanese Community Youth Council (JCYC)
2012 Pine Street
Chibi Chan Preschool
2507 Pine Street, SF 94115
Japanese Community Youth Council – JCYC (2012 Pine Street) has become one of San Francisco’s most successful youth organizations. While still committed to children and youth from the Japanese American community, JCYC has evolved and grown into an organization, which annually serves over 8,000 young people from all socio-economic and ethnic backgrounds.
Through a continuum of services, JCYC programs can support children and youth from the time they start Chibi Chan Preschool (2507 Pine Street, SF 94115) until they are ready to move onto college. The organization strives to offer young people a comprehensive array of services to ensure that they have the resources and support necessary to grow into healthy, productive adults.
2501 Sutter Street
Nestled in between Sutter, Baker, Broderick, and Post Streets, the 136-unit housing project is one of the more isolated public housing units in San Francisco. In its isolation, however, the public housing residence has somewhat of a sense of self sufficiency as it has a computer lab, a day care facility, and a food bank for residents.
Built in 1943, residents live with outdated appliances; unpredictable plumbing, mechanical, and electrical systems; extensive rodent problems; and other issues that affect their health and quality of life. Although situated closer to Pacific Heights, these residents have always been in D5, identify with D5 and share socioeconomic concerns more similar to those in the Western Addition than in the immediate surrounding areas.
One review on Yelp! review gives some insight in why Western Addition resident are concerned with the prospect of the isolated Westside being lumped into another district and loosing it’s connection to its true community of interest in the greater Western Addition:
“I don’t live here, I’ve never been inside the buildings, but I live across the street. The one perk of having this monstrous eyesore in the neighborhood is always having front row seats to a good fight or some other criminal activity. Sometimes it’s fun and it breaks up the monotony of living in a quiet, respectable neighborhood that can drive a person to madness…
Pretty soon after all this started happening, I noticed the cops started showing up, so I didn’t feel so bad about not calling 911. I mean, it really looked like the kind of fight that I’ve had before and didn’t look like anyone was going to get seriously hurt. But I also learned in first year of law school that what happened was against the law and definitely counted as assault/battery. And when as many cops showed up as there just were, and considering what just happened, probably both of those people are now headed off to jail (another perk of this place is getting to watch people getting arrested and carted off to the clink)”
Nichiren Hokke Buddhist Church
2016 Pine Street
St Benedict Deaf Parish at St. Francis Xavier Church
1801 Octavia St
St. Francis Xavier Church was begun in 1913 by Fr. Albert Breton, who also founded Japanese Sisters of the Visitation and later became Bishop of Fukuoka,Japan. In 1929 the Japanese Catholic Community acquired the property on the southwest corner of Octavia and Pine where they eventually built a school. In 1939 the site of the present church was acquired and built. In 1942 when the United States Government ordered the Japanese to relocation centers, many parish members stored their furniture and personal belongings in the social hall for their newly built church. The pastor, Fr. William Stoecke, followed many of his parishioners to the camp at Topaz, Utah where he ministered to them throughout their detention. In 1945, when the west coast was reopened to the Japanese, Fr. Stoecke returned to San Francisco to help his people resettle.
Today this Japanese Mission continues to be a lifeline to the Catholic Church for many monolingual Japanese or those with limited second language capabilities.
People come not only from San Francisco, but from San Mateo County, the North and East Bay, and from as far away as Manteca in the Central Valley and there are plans to expand the opportunity for monolingual and bilingual liturgical services.
Director of Programs and Community Relations
Japanese Cultural and Community Center
of Northern California
(415) 567-5505 x228 / (415) 567-4222 fax
Our Community, Our Future