Statement from Executive Director Tim Paulson on the Passing of Mayor Ed Lee

For Immediate Release                                            Contact:
December 12, 2017                                                     Tim Paulson, (415) 716-6383


 The San Francisco Labor Council is saddened by the sudden passing of Mayor Ed Lee.

Mayor Lee served San Francisco during some of the most volatile economic times in the city’s history. He came to office during the longest economic disaster in three generations and helped steer the city’s fortunes to arguably the largest concentration of wealth that we are experiencing today. Mayor Lee, like many of us in the labor movement, were (and are) challenged by how this booming business environment affects working men and women. The housing, immigration, and wage stagnation crises were fully placed on his agenda and are still part of the struggle for equality in San Francisco, as well as the entire United States.

As a former civil rights lawyer, Mayor Ed Lee fought against worksite raids and deportations of undocumented workers and we are forever thankful for his jump-starting and funding of the San Francisco Labor Council’s Immigration Center, We Rise SF. Our Immigration Center now has more staff and a cadre of immigration lawyers to navigate the citizenship process for hundreds of union workers and their families.

San Francisco passed the highest minimum wage of any city in the US and this was accomplished in Room 200 at City Hall with Mayor Lee and his staff.

We will miss Ed Lee’s quiet approach as he opened doors for nationally recognized apprenticeship programs and career pathway models that include violence prevention. The door was always open at Room 200. I have known Mayor Ed Lee to be the ultimate dedicated public servant. I first met him over 20 years ago when he served in Willie Brown’s administration as the city’s purchaser, and though we have had tough negotiations on many issues over the years I always knew that he cared tremendously for all the people of San Francisco.

On this sad day the Labor Council sends condolences to the Mayor’s family and the many dedicated staff of his administration.

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