African American Chamber wants tourism boycott on San Francisco
We've heard a lot lately about established San Francisco communities feeling bypassed and squeezed out by the city's economic boom. Latinos in the Mission. Small-business owners. Families. Teachers.
We’ve heard a lot lately about established San Francisco communities feeling bypassed and squeezed out by the city’s economic boom. Latinos in the Mission. Small-business owners. Families. Teachers. Low-income workers.
Add the African American Chamber of Commerce to the list. But unlike the eviction protesters who’ve blocked a few Google buses from departing for Silicon Valley for a few minutes, the chamber is preparing a move designed to have a far greater impact. It is threatening to organize a boycott of the city’s entire tourism and hospitality industry.
President Frederick Jordan said the chamber has alerted the National Coalition of Black Meeting Planners and the Association of African-American Meeting Professionals to prepare to cancel San Francisco conventions and conferences if the local chamber gives the go-ahead. The chamber’s next step would be to ask educational organizations and legal and medical groups to boycott San Francisco as well, he said.
Jordan said he hopes to avoid all that and realizes that encouraging African Americans to boycott San Francisco would damage his group members’ own businesses. But he said it’s high time City Hall – and especially the visitors bureau, S.F. Travel – give the city’s black residents their due.
The chamber is calling for city hearings into alleged discriminatory practices against African Americans in the hospitality industry and the diversion of 5 percent of hotel taxes to training African Americans to work in the tourism industry. It also wants S.F. Travel to better direct visitors and their dollars to black neighborhoods and businesses.
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