South San Francisco, CA February 15, 2019 Press Release
The South San Francisco City Council celebrates February as Black History Month, as officially proclaimed by the City Council at this week’s Council meeting. A City Council proclamation announced this year’s theme of “Black Migrations,” highlighting the challenges and successes of African Americans as they moved from rural farms to urban cities.
“It’s important to me and our City Council to recognize on an ongoing basis the diversity of our city, and we do so in many different ways throughout the year, whether it’s through a proclamation, city-sponsored programs, features on our diversity webpage, newsletters, and through social media,” says South San Francisco Mayor Karyl Matsumoto. “Diversity makes us stronger as a city, and celebrating Black History Month is one way to build upon that strength.”
During the period of the migrations, especially those that occurred in the twentieth century, millions of African Americans reshaped the demographic landscape of America. As a result of the migrations, a more diverse and stratified interracial and intra-racial urban population emerged, introducing urban churches and new religions, new musical forms such a ragtime, blues, and jazz, and the blossoming of visual and literary arts; “all of which has greatly enriched every fiber of American life, including our residents right here in South San Francisco,” adds Mayor Matsumoto.
South San Francisco is also celebrating Black History Month through the event Black History Month Presentation and Photo Drive,
which is scheduled for Saturday, February 23 at 11:00 a.m. at the Grand Avenue Library
, located at 306 Walnut Avenue. The Black History Month program will feature a PowerPoint presentation covering the African American presence in the county, obstacles that made some peninsula cities less welcoming, and the building of a black community in South San Francisco. The City is encouraging people to bring photographs to the event, as the library will scan them and return them with digital copies. The library will use this event to kick-off an oral history project to capture the stories of African American residents and workers in South San Francisco.
The City proudly promotes diversity throughout the year with events ranging from seminars for city employees around Unconscious Bias, to offering library programming for our residents such as Chinese New Year; to recognizing through proclamations such as National Diversity Awareness Month (April); Older Americans Month (May); Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month (June), Hispanic Heritage Month (September), Filipino-American Heritage Month (October); to conducting a special flag-raising ceremony to celebrate India’s Independence Day; to hosting Senior Health Fairs, Cultural Art events, and Youth Art programs.
“We realize celebrating diversity is not just a week- or month-long initiative, it’s a year-round commitment, something this City is committed to doing through the leadership of our Mayor and City Council members,” said South San Francisco City Manager Mike Futrell.