Last week, CDC director Rochelle Walensky described the news that 75% of people dying from COVID-19 in the US have disabilities as “encouraging.” Disabled people created an outcry on Twitter, starting the hashtag #MyDisabledLifeisWorthy. Disabled people and seniors know that our lives are valuable and our deaths from COVID-19 are not inevitable. From care rationing to the failure to control the spread of Omicron, ableism has underscored the US response to the pandemic.
Join the twitterstorm calling out ableism at the CDC, using #MyDisabledLifeisWorthy, #OurDisabledLivesAreWorthy, #NoBodyIsDisposable, #EugenicsbyCDC. And for more reading, check out High-Risk Pandemic Stories: A Syllabus, compiled by Alice Wong and the Disability Visibility Project – remember, our stories have power.
We look forward to being with many of you at General Meeting this Thursday morning to discuss how all of us at SDA, members and staff, will build and wield our collective power to fight for justice in 2022; similarly, we are excited for the Assembly District 17 Candidates forum that afternoon, where we can begin to hold a new elected official accountable to the priorities of seniors and people with disabilities. More information on both is below. And as we approach the holiday weekend dedicated to honoring the legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., SDA has compiled this list of events hosted by partner organizations. We will be sharing these on our social media as well. Please feel free to suggest others to add to the list!
What do you think SDA’s priorities should be this year?
General Meeting: Voting on our Top Issues
Come to the January 13th SDA General Meeting to make your voice heard. We’ll discuss campaign ideas and vote for our top 3. This meeting is an important part of our process to define our Advocacy Agenda for the year. After this vote, there will be a leadership meeting with staff, board members, and campaign leaders at the end of January to further flesh out the top campaigns and bring them back to the full membership as a fully formed Advocacy Agenda. The Advocacy Agenda issues are ones that are of primary concern to our communities where SDA has a role to play in effectively addressing them. As always, SDA will continue to work on a variety of other issues as well.
If you want to vote and you’re not sure if your membership is current, please email Sarah@sdaction.org to check.
Date: Thursday January 13th
Time: 10 AM
Location: Join online:
Or join by phone:
* Dial toll-free 888-475-4499 and enter Meeting ID: 852 8240 1205
* Or call with one click from a mobile phone: +16699006833,,85282401205#
Spanish and Tagalog interpretation and Live Captioning provided.
RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank You Donors!
SDA would like to send a very heartfelt thank you to all of our donors! We blew past our year end fundraising goal of $15,000 and raised over $21,000 to keep our work going! We are so grateful to be working alongside all of you. We’re entering 2022 ready to get to work!
SDA Members are the life of the organization!
It’s January 2022! That means it’s time to become a new member or renew your SDA membership. Please stay current with your membership so that you don’t miss out on what we’re up to!
You can join or renew online at https://actionnetwork.org/fundraising/become-an-sda-member-today , you can also send cash or a check to SDA P.O. Box 423388, San Francisco, CA 94142-3388, OR Venmo us at @sdaction
2021 Advocacy Agenda Campaign Updates
Free Wifi Campaign Delivers Demands!
On December 10th, a targeted delegation of members visited the flagship AT&T store to deliver these updated demands. Along with the demands, the Wifi Warriors gave AT&T a timeline to meet with the group by the end of January. If the deadline is not met, we promised to take our appeal public again with a large action.
You can read our most recent letter of demands to Ken McNeely, the President of AT&T’s Western Region, here.
In summary, our demands are as follows:
- Expanding eligibility for Access by AT&T to all seniors and people with disabilities
- Maximum speeds of at least 200/200 mbps and minimum baseline speeds over 100/100 mbps for Access by AT&T customers with a parallel plan offered at $30/month for households only eligible for ACP (essentially zeroing out the cost)
- Invest in outreach and enrollment efforts to increase access to existing programs
- Invest in connecting buildings and neighborhoods to the necessary network
- Support the establishment of, and participate in, a collaborative task force with SDA and other stakeholders that would work to quantify the systemic and geographical connection discrepancy, set goals for increasing connectivity, and monitor progress toward these goals.
Join us to win these demands in 2022!
Come to our planning meetings! Meetings are usually the last Tuesday of the month, but the next meeting will be on Tuesday February 8th from 3:00-4:30, by Zoom and phone. Spanish interpretation will be provided – please let us know if you’d like to join and have any other requests for interpretation or accommodation.
Sign our petition here to show your support. Reach out and get involved by attending a meeting and/or joining outreach efforts, emailing Peter[at]sdaction.org or Dasom@sdaction.org or leaving a voicemail at 415-546-1333 mentioning the Free WiFi Campaign.
SDA Campaign Updates
Housing: SRO Workgroup
SDA’s SRO Workgroup is pushing for working elevators and other accessibility improvements in residential hotels. If you live in a residential hotel or know someone who does, please fill out the survey here!
If you want to join this fight, contact Yesi at email@example.com or (415) 261-4300.
If you’d like to take the survey or want to help get surveys filled out, contact Yesi@sdaction.org and come to the SRO workgroup meetings!
The photo at right shows Yesi speaking at an action in Dec 2021 calling on DPH to ensure that people in their supportive housing buildings only pay 30% of their income as rent. Facing public pressure, DPH agreed to do this the day before the action!
Wheelchair Repair Campaign: Clinic Recap
More than 15 wheelchair users were able to get wheelchair repairs done, and others planned follow-up with City Wheelchairs for larger repairs.
Next fiscal year, Supervisor Myrna Melgar has committed to include funding to start a new free Wheelchair Repair and Battery Replacement Program for wheelchair users in San Francisco. After this first clinic we realize this program will have high demand, and we are planning future wheelchair repair clinics in the Mission and at Pomeroy Center. Please help us amplify the impact that the future program could have. Sign the petition here.
SDA’s Transit Justice group continues to be busy! Currently, we are working on four key accessibility issues as part of our Pedestrian Accessibility Campaign:
- Shared Spaces Program
- Golden Gate Park Plan
- Restore Muni Campaign
- Gimme Shelter Campaign
Interested in any of these current campaigns? Then join us. Just contact Pi Ra, firstname.lastname@example.org, (415) 225-2080.
The Gimme Shelter Campaign survey and petition are still open – find them at the links below!
SDA is Hiring!
We are looking for a passionate and motivated person to work towards social and racial justice as Housing Organizing Director with Senior and Disability Action. Seniors and people with disabilities and Black, indigenous, people of color are encouraged to apply. Great if you have organizing experience. Pays $57,000 + full benefits. The job description and information on how to apply are here.
Reminder: Another Round of Recalls
Be sure to vote in the February 15 election! If you need help, contact the SF Department of Elections at (415) 554-4375 or SFVote@sfgov.org, or leave SDA a message at (415) 546-1333. Sign your envelope and drop it in the mail, a vote-by-mail dropbox, or a voting site, by February 15, or vote in person early or on Election Day.
On the ballot: three school board recall contests, the primary for CA Assembly District 17, and Assessor-Recorder. If any of the three board members (President Gabriela López, Vice President Faauuga Moliga and commissioner Alison Collins) are recalled, Mayor Breed will appoint their interim replacements. There will also be a recall election for DA Chesa Boudin occurring with the June 7th statewide primary elections.
The city has requested $12 million to fund the anticipated costs of the recall elections.
Thursday Jan 13: AD 17 Candidates Forum
Following up on the election announcement above, here’s your opportunity to meet the candidates for Assembly District 17!
All 4 candidates (Campos, Haney, Mahmood & Selby) will be at the California Alliance for Retired Americans (CARA) & SDA Forum on Thursday, January 13 @ 2 pm. The primary election is coming up on February 15!
Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/8308420049
Dial by phone: 888 475 4499 toll-free, Meeting ID 830 842 0049.
Becoming Disabled During the Pandemic
Over the past 18 months of the COVID-19 pandemic, many people have become disabled or chronically ill for the first time– due to COVID-19, mental health effects of the pandemic, lack of access to healthcare, and more. Senior and Disability Action is hosting a training program for people who are new to disability or chronic illness and want to connect with other people and/or change the way disabilities are created and treated in our society.
If you have long COVID or a new disabillity, please fill out our short survey here: https://forms.gle/1cX9aW9bBZmg6hkcA
Senior and Disability Survival School in February!
Please mark your calendars for SDA’s February 2022 Survival School to mark the beginning of the new year. In this online Pandemic Edition Survival School in Chinese and English, we will cover topics on COVID, technology, food, transportation, housing, mental health, and home services. Join us to strengthen your advocacy skills and meet service providers to get your questions answered.
To register, please contact Dasom at email@example.com and call 415-546-1333. Classes will be held on Zoom on Wednesdays and Fridays: February 2nd and 4th, 9th and 11th, 16th and 18th.
Upcoming SDA Meetings
**Please note meetings continue to be remote until further notice**
Tuesday, January 11: Healthcare Action Team (HAT) Meeting (2nd Tuesday of every month). 11:00 am – 12:30 pm. Email Ligia for more information.
Thursday, January 13: General Meeting (2nd Thursday of every month). Join at 9:45am for Zoom support, 10:00am for General Meeting. Topic: Reflecting on our Year and Dreaming for 2022. Captioning and Spanish Interpretation provided. Email SDA or leave a message at 415-546-1333 mentioning the General Meeting with any questions. Zoom Link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85282401205 One-tap mobile: +16699006833,,85282401205# US (San Jose). Toll-Free Dial In: 888-475-4499; Meeting ID: 852 8240 1205.
Friday, January 14 and 28: Mad Mob SF (2nd and 4th Friday of every month). 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm. Email Raia to get the information to join or to find out about future meetings.
Wednesday, January 19: Housing Collaborative Meeting (3rd Wednesday of every month). 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm. Email Jessica for more information.
Friday, February 4: Transit Justice Meeting. 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm. Email Pi for more information.
Friday, February 4: SRO Workgroup (first Friday of the month). 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm. Email Yesi for more information.