Director’s Report to the Mayor’s Disability Council (MDC) June/July 2023

Nicole Bohn, Director Mayor’s Office on Disability
July 21, 2023
Seal of the City & County of San Francisco

Today’s Director’s Report to the Mayor’s Disability Council (MDC) provides a snapshot of some of the core issues that the Mayor’s Office on Disability (MOD) has been engaged with since the most recent public hearing of the MDC. The Council is encouraged to follow up on any of the items presented today. Along with this, items for future agenda consideration are provided.

MOD’s 2021-2022 Public Report to the Mayor’s Disability Council highlights MOD’s accomplishments, as well as ongoing challenges. In addition, it offers potential Mayor’s Disability Council agenda items for 2022-2023. The Council is encouraged to continue to reference this document.

Members of the public wishing to engage with aspects of this report may contact MOD at or by calling 415 554-6789. You may join our distribution list by contacting us and asking to be added. MOD’s website has migrated to This full report will be posted to following today’s meeting.

Welcome to our hybrid meeting of both in person and virtual attendees. MOD welcomes your feedback on how we might improve the public meeting experience for all.

Legislative updates, June/July 2023: Some of the current legislative items impacting people with disabilities are as follows:

Local Legislation and Resolutions:

Resolution 230269 Honoring Judy Heumann and the UN Plaza protests of 1977,

which led to the enacting of Federal disability rights legislation that is cornerstone to our experience today (Melgar et al). Staus: Passed with Recommendation, Approved by Mayor’s Office

  • This resolution directs Public Works to install a commemorative plaque or statuary in honor of the legacy of Judy Heumann and the historic disability rights protests in UN Plaza. This will be the first public recognition of a disability rights leader in San Francisco history.
  • The Council is encouraged to engage with MOD and the Board of Supervisors to support an accessible installation of this important commemoration, and may consider requesting a status update.

Shared Spaces: Referral 211301: Limits on Fines for Shared Spaces Violations

(Peskin et al): Status: Passed

  • The permanent Outdoor Dining program is now in effect. The Council may wish to continue to track the accessibility and enforcement progress of this program.

State Legislation:

CPUC Autonomous Vehicles (AV) Permit approval: On August 10, 2023, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) will vote on Draft Resolutions TL- 19145 and TL-19144, which would approve permanent AV operating permits in San Francisco. The City is asking that the Commission table the proposed Resolutions and take the time to develop and adopt minimum safety and accessibility standards so that people across the disability community can enjoy the benefits of autonomous vehicles.

As a reminder, permission for autonomous vehicles to operate in San Francisco is regulated by the CPUC and the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), not SFMTA. SFMTA and MOD are committed to supporting advocacy for the accessibility of AV’s.

If you are interested in being involved in advocating for continued accessibility of AV’s, please contact MOD, or SFMTA Accessible Services.

Transportation Network Company (TNC) legislation (SB 1376): TNC Access for All Act is in pilot implementation phase. MOD, SFMTA and the County Transportation

Authority (CTA) continue to be parties to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) comment proceeding, on the recommendation of the Mayor’s Disability Council.

  • The proceedings are ongoing, and are currently focused on on-time and reduced wait time performance

Federal Legislation:

Air Carrier’s Access Amendments Act of 2023 SB. 545 Baldwin (D) et al  and H.R.  1267 Titus (D). For implementation no later than September 2023.

  • These identical bills require the Department of transportation to seek consultation from the Access Board to redefine minimum accessibility requirements related to boarding and deplaning equipment, seating accommodations, captioned and audio description of in-flight entertainment and communications, individual video displays, visual and tactile announcements, and appropriate stowage for assistive devices to prevent damage. This bill also ensures the accessibility of all gates, ticketing areas, customer service desks as well as kiosks, software applications, and websites.
  • MOD and the San Francisco Airport are finalizing a joint support letter for this legislation. A sample template, addressing issues specific to the Deaf Community, may also be found at the National Association of the Deaf website. The Council may consider drafting a support letter.

Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability: Updates to HUD's Section 504  Regulations Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is requesting public comment on proposed rulemaking, due Monday, July 24. The specific questions for comment are posted at, and linked above. MOD and Disability and Aging Services are will be submitting joint comment that include many of our findings from the Affordable Housing Needs Assessment.

News and Announcements:

  • Coalition of Municipal Offices for Persons with Disabilities, including San Francisco Mayor’s Office on Disability, met with Department of Transportation Secretary Buttigieg and his staff in Washington DC on June

1, 2023 to discuss our January 2023 Request Letter and collective accessibility agenda related to communication access for Deaf individuals in air travel, ground transportation committee representation, paratransit,

on-demand transportation (taxi’s and TNC’s) improvements for service dog and wheelchair users, and Autonomous Vehicles.

The meeting was a successful first step in building relationships with the Federal Government on behalf of municipalities who serve people with disabilities. MOD would be glad to present on this at an upcoming public meeting.

  • Congratulations to Tess Bartlett, MOD’s new Community Development Assistant, who, among other duties, will be assisting with tracking and implementation of programmatic and architectural improvements Citywide. Tess served as MOD’s SF Fellow for the 2022-2023 year, and we are thrilled to continue to have her!
  • July 26, 2023 is the 33rd Anniversary of the ADA. In celebration, City Hall will be lit in the international color of purple. Internally, MOD, with support from the Public Library and others, is hosting a half-day ADA symposium for Departmental ADA Coordinators and City staff on this day. We hope to make some variation of this an annual occurrence. Thanks especially to Tess Bartlett and Deputy Director Debby Kaplan for your work on this event.

Agenda Items for future MDC Hearing consideration, action, or resolution:

It is recommended that Council members review all active local disability- impacts legislation first, for time sensitivity. You may also consider:

  • Mayor’s Office on Disability 2022-2023 Public Report to the Mayor’s Disability Council: MOD will present a Year in Review update to our ADA Coordinators on July 26, 2023. The Council may consider hearing this report in public forum.
  • Autonomous Vehicles in San Francisco, and transportation accessibility nationally (see CPUC legislative item and News item, above).
  • Accessible Business Entrance Program (ABE) and Citywide Title II Barrier removal progress: MOD continues to work extensively with the Department of Building Inspection (DBI) related to the City’s compliance with the ABE program, and with the new fiscal year, is refocusing architectural efforts Citywide architectural access barrier removal obligations under ADA Title II. The Council may consider requesting an update on these two items
  • Golden Gate Park Wayfinding Presentation follow-up: The Council may consider follow-up from items related to recommendations presented by the San Francisco Fellows during the April 21, 2023 meeting.
  • Disability employment updates: The Council is encouraged to learn about citywide data collection efforts pertaining to employees with disabilities, reasonable accommodation provision for employees, and consider advocating for ASL interpretation support from our colleagues in Department of Human Resources, and a potential Citywide anti-ableism and accessibility training module for City employees.
  • Dining Reusables follow-up: Department of Environment (ENV) Disability Focus Groups concluded in April. The Council may consider hearing from the Department on the outcomes of this Focus Group work.
  • Age and Disability Friendly San Francisco Implementation: The second cycle of recommendations related to this Plan is underway. The Council may consider hearing from Disability and Aging Services on initiative progress.

Health and Emergency Response and the Disability Community Review these links for current COVID-19 and MPX (Monkey Pox) resource information.