Last week on October 12, San Francisco celebrated Indigenous Peoples Day. It is a great opportunity to consider the unique cultures and contributions of the Indígena, including immigrants. One of the best ways you can show your support for immigrants is to VOTE YES ON PROP. C.
Proposition C will allow immigrants to serve on San Francisco’s various boards and commissions. They will participate in the same application and review process as all other interested San Franciscans.
Here’s why we believe this is a just, equitable, and reasonable measure.
Did you know immigrants bring in far more revenue than they cost? A 2014 article by Dan Kosten indicates that immigrants paid over $223 billion in federal taxes, and over $104 billion in state and local taxes. Immigrants are considered primary drivers in the agricultural, hospitality, tourism, and restaurant industries.
While immigrants don’t see a penny of what they contribute in Social Security and Medicare, San Francisco has a history of recognizing immigrant contributions. That’s why we are a Sanctuary City, why Healthy San Francisco is open to all who meet low income requirements, and why immigrants can vote in school board races. San Francisco doesn’t fear or denigrate diversity; we embrace and value it. We recognize our policies must reflect these values.
These policies lay a foundation of inclusion and equity, one of San Francisco’s greatest legacies. Immigrants’ taxes contribute to schools, police and fire, health care, and programs of all types throughout San Francisco. To date, non-citizens have had no voice in how their vast tax contributions are used or how San Francisco’s many programs impact their communities. This can’t be where our commitment to equity ends.
In this election, Proposition C allows immigrants to have a true voice in the policies impacting them and for which they pay taxes. The proposition would allow immigrants to serve on San Francisco boards and commissions, a right currently limited to citizens. This is a policy that is long overdue!
Does it make sense that non-citizens can’t be appointed to the Immigrant Rights Commission? Given the disparate impact of COVID-19 on Latinos, can you believe the wealth of information immigrants could contribute to the Health Commission, the Small Business Commission, or the Food Security Task Force? Wouldn’t it be nice to know and incorporate immigrant voices on the Park & Rec Commission, the Children and Families First Commission, and the Pedestrian Safety Advisory Committee?
Boards and commissions are one of the best ways for committed members of the public to contribute to their community, neighborhood and city. It is how interested citizens deepen their knowledge about issues they care about. Prop. C allows immigrants to participate in this process, and in so doing, they expand the discourse for all San Franciscans.
Immigrants contribute money through their taxes, but seek to also contribute their voices and ideas. Their voices enrich the public dialogue, bring new voices to the table that San Franciscans have demonstrated, through their votes, we care about. The opinions, concerns, and perspectives of immigrants matter. They are our neighbors, friends, and fellow workers. We can honor their contributions by giving them a true voice and seat at the table.
Support equity for immigrants!
Support Prop. C!