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NOBCO Mourns the Loss of One of Our Own, Senator Clementa Pinckney

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NOBCO

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

NOBCO Mourns the Loss of One of Our Own, Senator Clementa Pinckney

Washington, DC – June 24, 2015 – The National Organization of Black County Officials, Inc. (NOBCO), under the leadership of Board Chairman, Commissioner Roy C. Brooks, from Tarrant County, TX, on behalf of our organization expresses great sadness as we mourn with the nation over the tragic death of nine innocent human beings in a senseless act of violence. As an organization of elected and appointed county officials, it is with deepest regret that we have lost Senator Clementa C. Pinckney, a member of the State Legislature. Elected to the House of Representatives in 1996 at the age of 23 and the Senate in 2000 made him the youngest African American elected to the South Carolina Legislature. Senator Pinckney represented the 45th district comprised of Allendale, Beaufort, Charleston, Colleton, Hampton, and Jasper Counties.

Senator Pinckney was a man of God and had pastored since the age of 18. Since 2010, Rev. Pinckney was the pastor of the historic Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church where he and eight of his members met their violent and untimely death. On the fateful Wednesday evening of June 17, 2015, nine Americans were confronted with domestic terrorism fueled by racial hatred ignited and executed during Bible Study. God-loving Christians welcomed the stranger into their midst and became victims of some of the most divisive conditions in our nation resulting in senseless deaths.

In these days of escalating racial tensions and too much cruelty and violence inflicted upon African Americans, NOBCO, representing African American elected and appointed county officials across America raise our voices to join with others in lamenting who we are as a divided nation. It is time for us to realize our greatest strength…our unity.   What will it take for us to truly be the United States? Today it begins with the removal of the confederate flag flying over state houses in our nation. We applaud those officials that have called for the removal of this symbol of division in our nation. Today it begins with educating and re-educating our children to love and not hate one another because of the color of our skin.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.” Today is the time to refocus our energies toward the realization of the beloved community that encompasses all. To allow hate to rule the day is counterproductive to a vibrant and thriving America for which we can ALL be proud. Today, NOBCO stands for one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

To the Honorable Rev. Clementa C. Pinckney, Cynthia Hurd, Susie Jackson, Ethel Lance, Rev. DePayne Middleton-Doctor, Tywanza Sanders, Rev. Daniel Simmons, Rev. Sharonda Coleman Singleton, and Myra Thompson, may you all rest in peace.

For more information, please contact Helen Holton, NOBCO Executive Director, at (443) 364-8581, or hholton@nobco.org.

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Community

Mayor London Breed Announces SFPD Tourism Deployment Plan as San Francisco Readies for Reemerging Travel Season

SFPD continues showcasing community policing reforms in deployment of 26 additional officers on bicycle and foot patrols to City’s high-traffic, iconic travel destinations

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San Francisco Cable Cars/Ragnar Vorel via Unsplash

Mayor London N. Breed announced details from San Francisco’s new community policing and tourism deployment plan to support and safeguard a re-emergent travel season that is forecast to exceed 15.3 million visitors by year’s end.

Outlining operational elements at a press conference on July 19 at Chinatown’s iconic Dragon’s Gate this morning, Breed and Police Chief Bill Scott highlighted how the San Francisco Police Department’s Tourism Deployment Plan will provide high-visibility and welcome support to an economic sector that is vitally important to San Francisco as travelers worldwide emerge from COVID-19 lockdowns.

“Tourism has long been an economic powerhouse in our city, bringing not just local tax revenue to fund vital city services but also jobs and economic opportunities for generations of San Franciscans,” said Breed. “San Francisco has done an incredible job managing this pandemic, and with one of the highest vaccination rates of anywhere in the country, we are working hard to reopen our city. That means bringing more officers to our tourist areas, as well as other efforts like our recently funded efforts to add more ambassadors and performances throughout Downtown, the Waterfront, and Mid-Market areas. We are committed to doing everything we can to reopen our businesses, put our residents back to work, and welcome travelers back to all of our city’s unforgettable destinations.”

The San Francisco Police Department’s Tourism Deployment Plan draws heavily from a community policing strategy that is among the pillars of SFPD’s groundbreaking 21st century police reforms. Under the plan, SFPD will deploy 26 additional police officers on bicycle and foot patrols to an array of high-traffic and highly sought-after travel destinations in five of the City’s 10 police districts:

  • Central Police District’s new deployments will feature 14 additional officers on bike and foot patrols that include: Union Square, Market Street, Powell Street, Chinatown and Lower Grant Avenue, Pier 39 and Fisherman’s Wharf, North Beach and the crooked portion of Lombard Street.

 

  • Mission Police District’s new deployments will feature two additional officers on bike and foot patrols in the Castro and Upper Market.

 

  • Northern Police District’s new deployments will feature six additional officers on bicycle patrols around the Palace of Fine Arts, Alamo Square and Japantown.

 

  • Park Police District’s new deployments will feature two additional officers on bicycle patrols along the Haight Street commercial corridor.e

 

  • Richmond Police District’s new deployments will feature two additional officers on bicycle patrols in Golden Gate Park.

In addition to this Tourism Deployment Plan, the Mayor’s proposed budget, which the Board of Supervisors has come to an agreement on, includes funding for the Downtown Recovery Plan. The Downtown Recovery Plan includes an expansion of the number of ambassadors in the downtown and Union Square areas; a series of events and activations throughout Downtown, at the site of the temporary Transbay Terminal, and along the waterfront; and improvements at Hallidie Plaza, the entrance to the Powell Street BART Station and site of the Cable Car turnaround.

Outlook for Tourism Sector

Although there is renewed uncertainty about effects from COVID-19 variants in many parts of the world, a San Francisco Travel Association analysis released in March forecast that overall visitation to the City would reach 15.3 million in 2021, with $3.5 billion in overall visitor spending projected by year’s end. The study by San Francisco’s official destination marketing organization said that total visitation was not anticipated to return to pre-pandemic levels until 2023. Due to a slower recovery of international visitors and average rate in the City, San Francisco Travel concluded that overall visitor spending was unlikely to return to 2019 levels before 2025.

“Our market research shows a light at the end of the tunnel for destinations like San Francisco after a devastating year for the global tourism industry: there is huge pent-up demand for travel all over the world,” said San Francisco Travel President and CEO Joe D’Alessandro. “As San Francisco embarks on a multi-year recovery, we know that high-visibility, community-oriented patrols by San Francisco police officers provide a reassuring, welcoming presence for the visitors and conventions so essential to our city’s continued success.”

San Francisco Travel reported a total of 10.2 million visitors to the City in 2020, which was down 61 percent from a record high of 26.2 million in 2019. Total spending by visitors was $2.3 billion in 2020, representing a pandemic-driven drop of 77.7 percent from 2019’s record high of $10.3 billion in total visitor spending. Spending figures include expenditures on meetings and conventions in San Francisco.

The COVID-19 pandemic has similarly affected local employment related to the tourism sector, according to San Francisco Travel, which found that the number of jobs supported by tourism in San Francisco fell to 20,880 in 2020 — a 75.8 percent decline from 86,111 jobs tourism supported in 2019.

Expanded Community Policing at Visitor Destinations

The mission of officers detailed to the Tourism Deployment Plan is to provide high-visibility and preventative patrol in their assigned locations, while embodying the principles of a community policing strategy that is a centerpiece of the San Francisco Police Department’s comprehensive and voluntary Collaborative Reform Initiative. Officers are well trained to incorporate five goals into their community interactions and public guardianship, as detailed in SFPD’s Community Policing Strategic Plan. SFPD’s Community Policing principles include:

  • Goal 1: Communication that is honest, transparent, empathetic and culturally and linguistically competent and respectful.

 

  • Goal 2: Education that both teaches community members in safety awareness and learns from communities to serve more responsively.

 

  • Goal 3: Problem-solving through collaborative working partnerships to identify and address safety issues and topics of concern.

 

  • Goal 4: Relationship-building to forge trusting and respectful engagements with San Francisco’s residents and visitors alike.

 

  • Goal 5: Organizational and operational approaches reflecting the guardian mindset that defines the promise of 21st century policing.

New deployments of police officers under the Tourism Deployment Plan announced on July 19 have already been implemented and will supplement existing patrols citywide, which will remain at current staffing levels.

Officers deployed under the plan will be on bicycle or on foot in frequently traveled areas, greeting and interacting with community members and guests. Assignments include fixed posts as well as patrols in commercial corridors, depending on deployments. Officers’ primary focus will be to engage with the public and provide aid when needed, and to take necessary enforcement action whenever identifying individuals involved in crime.

The San Francisco Mayor’s Office of Communications is the source for this story.

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Community

KAISER PERMANENTE SAN LEANDRO MEDICAL CENTER OFFERS CORD BLOOD DONATION AND COLLECTION

Kaiser Permanente is the first hospital in the East Bay to offer the program through a partnership with the Cleveland Cord Blood Center

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Kaiser San Leandro/Kaiser Permanente

SAN LEANDRO, Calif., July 13, 2021 – Expectant parents who deliver at the Kaiser Permanente San Leandro Medical Center will now have an opportunity to donate their babies’ umbilical cord blood as part of an expanded partnership with the Cleveland Cord Blood Center.

The Kaiser Permanente San Leandro Medical Center becomes the second Kaiser Permanente hospital on the West Coast to offer the Cleveland Cord Blood Center donation and collection program, which is critical for life-saving treatments. Kaiser Permanente San Francisco Medical Center has been a Cleveland Cord Blood Center collection site since 2017.

Cord blood is used to treat dozens of diseases and disorders such as anemia, leukemia, lymphoma and sickle-cell disease. Researchers also rely on cord blood stem cells to find and develop new cell therapy treatments. 

The San Leandro collection center is supported by the California Umbilical Cord Blood Collection Program, a statewide public program to collect a genetically diverse bank of cord blood units that will then be made available to patients in the U.S. and around the world for lifesaving transplantations.

“Our expectant parents now have the opportunity to participate in a program that can help provide life-saving treatments to many simply by donating their babies’ cord blood at birth,” said Debra Flores, RN, senior vice president and area manager, Kaiser Permanente, Southern Alameda County. “We are proud to partner with the Cleveland Cord Blood Center to help expand this program to our hospital so we can create a more diverse pool of donors.” 

Expanding the diversity of cord blood units

Cord blood collections at the Kaiser Permanente San Leandro Medical Center, located in one of the most diverse communities in the East Bay, will help expand Cleveland Cord Blood Center’s diverse inventory of cord blood. A more diverse pool of donors increases the chances of a match for life-saving treatments, particularly for minority groups and patients of mixed heritage. Donations from African American, Asian and Hispanic populations are underrepresented in public cord blood banks.

If parents agree, the umbilical cord blood is collected at the child’s birth, a simple and painless process.  A Cleveland Cord Blood Center-trained team then collects and prepares the donated cord blood for shipment to the Northeast Ohio center. Units approved for clinical use will be processed, stored and listed on an international registry which is accessible by physicians worldwide. In addition to umbilical cord blood used for transplantation in patients with life-threatening disorders, stem-cell rich cord blood units from Cleveland Cord Blood Center are increasingly used in the development of cell therapy treatments for a variety of diseases.

A statewide partnership

“The California Umbilical Cord Blood Collection Program’s focus on the statewide collection of cord blood units from diverse populations for public banking is aligned with our efforts to expand the diversity of inventory of units available for transplant,” said Marcie Finney, Executive Director of the Cleveland Cord Blood Center. 

Kaiser Permanente hospitals continue to look for ways to be a part of life-saving treatment programs like this one.

“This is an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of those in our community and beyond,” said Kapil Dhingra, MD, Physician-in-Chief, Kaiser Permanente San Leandro Medical Center. “We hope the diversity of our patients can help expand the pool of cord blood donors as we look for more ways to meet the growing global demand for umbilical cord blood matches.” 

About Kaiser Permanente
Kaiser Permanente is committed to helping shape the future of health care. We are recognized as one of America’s leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans. Founded in 1945, Kaiser Permanente has a mission to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve. We currently serve approximately 12.5 million members in 8 states and the District of Columbia. Care for members and patients is focused on their total health and guided by their personal Permanente Medical Group physicians, specialists, and team of caregivers. Our expert and caring medical teams are empowered and supported by industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the-art care delivery, and world-class chronic disease management. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care innovations, clinical research, health education, and the support of community health.

About the Cleveland Cord Blood Center 

One of only eight FDA licensed cord blood centers in the U.S., the Cleveland Cord Blood Center collects, processes, stores and distributes stem-cell rich umbilical cord blood for transplantation in patients with life threatening disorders such as leukemia, lymphoma and immune system disorders. In addition, Cleveland Cord Blood Center cord blood units are being used by our scientists and other research organizations in the exploration of the virtually unlimited lifesaving and life-giving possibilities. The Cleveland Cord Blood Center’s commitment to a diverse inventory of cord blood helps enhance the availability of a match for life-saving treatments, particularly for minority groups and patients of mixed heritage. Cord blood collection hospitals are located in Cleveland, Ohio; Atlanta Georgia; as well as San Francisco and San Leandro, California. The organization’s headquarters and research and development laboratory are located in the Cleveland area.

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City Government

Police Chief Appointed

Chief Pridgen comes to San Leandro after serving as the police chief of the City of Seaside. Prior to Seaside, Chief Pridgen spent 26 years with the City of Fort Worth, Texas, Police Department where he attained the highest rank of assistant chief of police.

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Police Chief Abdul Pridgen

San Leandro, CA: Abdul Pridgen, Police Chief, has been appointed by City Manager Fran Robustelli to serve as the next Police Chief of San Leandro, effective September 13, 2021. Chief Susan Manheimer will continue her interim service until September 12, 2021.

Chief Pridgen comes to San Leandro after serving as the police chief of the City of Seaside. Prior to Seaside, Chief Pridgen spent 26 years with the City of Fort Worth, Texas, Police Department where he attained the highest rank of assistant chief of police.

“Chief Pridgen is a well-respected law enforcement veteran, who is an advocate for diversity, inclusion, and a community builder,” said City Manager Fran Robustelli. “Chief Pridgen will provide immediate attention to pressing needs, such as transparency, investment into personnel, and implementing police oversight for the department.”

In response to his appointment, Chief Pridgen stated, “It is an honor to be gifted the chance to serve the dedicated men and women of the San Leandro Police Department and the rich, diverse group of San Leandrans. Our profession faces many challenges, but we have a tremendous opportunity to set an example for progressive, procedurally just, transparent, accountable, and community-focused policing. I look forward to working closely with all of our internal and external stakeholders to make the San Leandro Police Department a pioneering model of contemporary policing for others to emulate.”

Chief Pridgen received his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Criminal Justice from Dallas Baptist University and his Master of Public Administration from Tarleton State University. In addition, he received training from the Southern Police Institute, FBI National Academy, FBI National Executive Institute, and Harvard University Kennedy School of Government. Chief Pridgen serves as the president of the California Police Chiefs Association.

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