Supervisor Chan's Spring 2015 Newsletter


Supervisor Wilma Chan's District Newsletter

                                                                                                Spring 2015


In this issue:

ALL IN Alameda County

Human Trafficking Awareness Month

Supporting the Women's Cancer Resource Center

A Strong Start for Children

Reforming Immigration

International Women's Day

Re-investing in our Communities

Immigration Resource Fair

Youth Career Fair

Funding Youth Soccer

Keeping our  Neighborhoods Safe

National Nurses Month

Diane Wydler, Mental Health Board Commission

Supporting Urban Farming

Upcoming Events 



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Oakland Office
1221 Oak Street, Suite 536
Oakland, CA 94612 (map)
Phone: 510.272.6693
Fax: 510.268.8004


District Office
15903 Hesperian Boulevard
San Lorenzo, CA 94580 (map)
Phone: 510.278.0367
Fax: 510.278.0467


Housing Information and Critical Health & Human Services


Dear Friends,

It is my pleasure to update you on the work I have been doing to make Alameda County an even better place to call home.

In this edition you can read about my work on ALL IN Alameda County- the new war on poverty, the youth career fair I helped coordinate in the city of Alameda and my contribution to fund youth soccer in San Lorenzo. 

You can also learn about my work to raise awareness about the importance of access to early childhood education, my commitment to help Alameda County residents regardless of their immigration status and much more.

It is an honor to serve you.  Please do not hesitate to contact me with any comments, questions or concerns that you may have regarding the district or Alameda County.



Wilma Chan
Supervisor, Third District 


ALL IN Alameda County: New War on Poverty

all in

Nearly one year ago, community leaders and advocates joined me to begin a year-long planning process for ALL IN Alameda County- the new war on poverty. During this time, the working group developed strategies in the areas of Early Childhood Education, Food Security and Economic Empowerment.  I am confident that these research-based strategies will make a tremendous impact in Alameda County. With an incredible team of individuals, we have already launched the ALL IN TO END HUNGER 2020 initiative, a sustained effort to solve hunger by focusing on food system inefficiencies, public policy reform, economic development, and community involvement.

Additionally, as an early childhood advocate, I am particularly excited about the Birth to 8 year-old coalition that has emerged during the past year. I was a strong proponent for ALL IN to fund the transitions from Public Health home visiting to preschool and from preschool to kindergarten. With ‘warm hand-offs’ and affordable child care, our children will have the best opportunity to be kindergarten ready. The group is also working hard to develop strategies that specifically address economic development and I look forward to sharing those with you in the near future.

The shocking increase in poverty and inequality demands that we take action. It is fair and necessary that we work together to support our neighbors who are struggling to make ends meet. I would like to thank the ALL IN Advisory Board and working group members who have been involved in these efforts. To learn more about the work that ALL IN Alameda County: the new war on Poverty is doing, click here.

Fighting Against Big Pharma

big pharma

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, prescription and over the counter (OTC) drugs, are (after marijuana and alcohol), the most commonly abused substances by American youth ages 14 and older. In July 2011, I voted, along with my Board of Supervisors colleagues on a County ordinance that would require pharmaceutical companies to set up and pay for a program to dispose of expired and otherwise unwanted drugs in the County. This ordinance, authored by my colleague, Supervisor Nate Miley, aims to prevent prescription drug misuse and keeps drugs out of our waterways.

Shortly after the Board of Supervisors voted on this ordinance, the County was taken to court by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America the Generic Pharmaceutical Association and the Biotechnology Industry Organization. After losing at the U.S. District Court and the U.S. Ninth Court of Appeals, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to consider the pharmaceutical industry’s challenge to the County ordinance.

On May 25, I joined Supervisor Nate Miley and other County officials at a press conference to announce the Supreme Court’s decision. Alameda is now the first County in the nation to require that drug companies pay part of the cost to set up collection points and dispose of expired drugs. I am proud to support these efforts that will keep drugs away from our youth and help secure our communities' safety.  To learn more about the Safe Drug Disposal ordinance and where to find a prescription drop-off site, click here

Human Trafficking Awareness Month 


Human trafficking is a multi-billion dollar trade that occurs in every industry, including the commercial sex trade, in the labor market, such as domestic servitude, restaurant work and the construction industry. Commercially sexually exploited children (CSEC) represent a growing segment of the U.S. human trafficking population where victims experience extreme forms of trauma, violence, manipulation and even death at the hands of their traffickers. The average age for this population is 12-14 years old.

On January 13, I presented a Human Trafficking Awareness Month proclamation to Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O’Malley, County Deputy District Attorney, Casey Bates, Executive Director of MISSSEY, Falilah Aisha Bilah and other representatives from MISSSEY. Alameda County serves as both a statewide and national leader in bringing together law enforcement, prosecutors, health and human services, and community-based organizations to create a victim-centered approach to human trafficking. Under the leadership of the Alameda County Board of Supervisors, the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office, the Alameda County Family Justice Center, local leaders and community partners, the silence surrounding human trafficking has been broken and many incidents of abuse and exploitation continue to be prevented. I am proud to support these necessary efforts that protect some of Alameda County’s most vulnerable populations.  

Supporting the Women's Cancer Resource Center


In 2011, cancer was the leading cause of death for Hispanic, American Indian/Alaska Native and Asian/Pacific Islander women in the United States and the second leading cause of death for White and Black women. This February, I was invited to present at the Women’s Cancer Resource Center’s 4th Annual Gala where I spoke about the challenges that women face during their journey with cancer.

In addition to caring for themselves, research shows that women are more likely to take on roles and responsibilities to care for family members who are disabled, chronically ill, or elderly such as a parent, parent in-law or child. Approximately 80% of mothers are responsible for selecting their child’s doctors, making appointments and follow up care. Additionally, many women throughout the United States and in Alameda County report that they do not have a usual place to go when they are sick or when they require health advice. All of these barriers, in addition to dealing with cancer put women in particular risk for death.

It is essential that we support organizations such as the Women’s Cancer Resource Center. For almost 30 years, they have supported women throughout their journey with cancer and have continued to advocate for changes in the health care system that will help women. Additionally, WCRC helps women with cancer improve their quality of life through education, supportive services and practical assistance. All of their program services are free. When we ensure that women have access to services, we are supporting entire health care systems for our families. 

A Strong Start for Children


A strong start for children can lead them to having a healthier, safer, and more prosperous life in later years. Yet, in the United States we fall behind in providing the appropriate services that ensure success in the future of our children. In May, I was asked to moderate a panel discussion that followed the screening of Wounded Places from The Raising of America Documentary series which tells the stories of children shaken by violence. The powerful documentary travels to Philadelphia and Oakland where children have been exposed to structural racism, street violence and other adversities and who experience symptoms that are similar to post-traumatic stress disorder.

The panel discussion included Oakland residents Antonio Carter and Caheri Gutierrez whose stories were featured in the film, Angela Louis Howard, the founder of Lotus Bloom in Oakland, Carla Keener from First 5 Alameda County and Jeff Rackmill, Director for Children System of Care at the County’s Behavioral Health Care Services. The panelists spoke about the work they are currently doing with children and families who have been exposed to trauma and violence in Oakland and Alameda County.The screening was sponsored by UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital, First 5 Alameda County, the Alameda County Public Health Department and Youth Uprising. 

Over 55% of Alameda County students are not ready for kindergarten. Much of this is due to a lack of access to early education and to the trauma that many children living in urban neighborhoods face every day. We must all work together to ensure that children have access to education and the resources they need to succeed in school and beyond. 

Reforming Immigration 

Today, there are around 11.2 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States.  In Alameda County, there are nearly 500,000 residents that were born outside the U.S. and an estimated 124,000 of these immigrants are undocumented.

In February, Alameda’s League of Women Voters asked me to present at their event “Reforming Immigration: Alameda County Perspectives.” The forum served as a way to educate community members on the current state of immigration in the County. At the forum, I spoke about Alameda County’s commitment to the well-being of residents regardless of their immigration status. Through the County’s HealthPAC program, we provide comprehensive health care services that are similar to the Medi-Cal scope of services for low-income residents that lack a pathway to coverage under the Affordable Care Act.

I was also joined by immigration lawyers from Centro Legal de la Raza and Asian Pacific Islander Legal Outreach who spoke about the daily issues surrounding undocumented residents that their respective organizations deal with. They also spoke about undocumented residents who currently live in fear of deportation while attempting to keep their families together, obtain work permits and gain access to health care. Alameda County is considered one of the most diverse areas in the United States with over 50 languages spoken by students throughout public schools. Historically, immigrants have contributed greatly to the United States and I believe we must support a plan that is fair and provides an affordable road to citizenship. 

International Women's Day 


Although women comprise of 50 percent of the world’s population, they continue to be under-represented as voters, political leaders and elected officials. Today, I am only the sixth woman to serve on the Alameda County Board of Supervisors. In order to celebrate the many achievements of local and international women, the Board of Supervisors recognized the month of March as International Women’s Month and made a commitment to continue to work towards removing the social, economic, and political barriers that women face in reaching full equality. International Women’s Day is observed around the world and provides an opportunity to recognize and reflect the progress made to advance women’s equality and to celebrate the gains made by women in our society.

I was joined by Executive Director of Emerge California, Kimberly Ellis and Director of Programs of Ignite, Fatimah Simmons at our January 22 Board of Supervisor meeting. Emerge California identifies, trains and encourages women to run for office. Similarly, Ignite serves a younger population that helps build young women’s political ambitions and trains them to run for office. I would like to thank both organizations for their continued work towards achieving equality.  I am committed to working with organization like Emerge and Ignite California to secure the rights of women and to create lasting solutions to the barriers that they face every day. 

Re-investing in our Communities 

The United States is the world’s leader in incarceration with 2.2 million people in the nation’s prisons or jails, resulting in prison overcrowding. In 2011, Governor Brown signed Assembly Bill 109 to reduce the number of state prisoners and transferred the responsibility of incarceration and supervision of many low level inmates and parolees from the State to the County level.

Since the implementation of Assembly Bill 109, the State of California has allocated funding to Alameda County to assist with this transition. In March, I met with the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights who informed me about their campaign “Job not Jails” and urged that the AB109 monies be spent on the families and communities impacted by the high rates of incarceration in our County.  At the March 19 Board of Supervisors meeting, I was proud to support and voted to allocate 50 percent of public safety funds to community-based organizations. The proposal passed 3-1 and will approximately double the money spent on programs helping people coming out of jail and prison. This significant investment in the community will help give formerly incarcerated individuals a second chance to turn their lives around and contribute to their communities. 

Immigration Resource Fair


Access to services, particularly health care and legal assistance, is extremely difficult for undocumented communities. In April, I partnered with the Alameda Labor Council, public officials and community-based organizations to co-sponsor an Immigration Resource Fair in Oakland.

The fair was held on Saturday, April 4 in front of Oakland City Hall. Over 200 individuals attended the immigration resource fair where they were provided with free legal resources specializing in President Obama’s executive DACA and DAPA programs, which grant a type of temporary permission to stay in the United States called “Deferred Action.” Other resources included one-on-one consultations with immigration lawyers, on-site health insurance benefit intakes, information on how to apply for a driver’s license regardless of immigration status, and free food.

With over 124,000 undocumented immigrants living in Alameda County, it is crucial that we provide resources for all residents regardless of their immigration status. This will strengthen the local economy, workforce and public safety that affects all residents in Alameda County. 

Youth Career Fair


On May 6, I co-sponsored a Youth Career Pathways and Job Fair at Encinal High School with the Alameda Unified School District (AUSD), the City of Alameda, and the Alameda Collaborative for Children. The fair was free to all public high school students in Alameda. During the event, high school students had the opportunity to apply for summer jobs and paid internships, talk to representatives from Peralta Colleges, and explore opportunities in vocational education.

In order to make this event cost free for all students, I contributed $3,000. The career and job fair supports the goals of my ALL-IN Alameda County initiative, which I launched last year to help reduce poverty and inequality in the region. We know that linking learning with academics and career preparation results in higher graduation rates, increased college enrollments, and higher earning potential. By partnering with the AUSD, local employers can play a vital role in helping students achieve career success and preventing our youth from falling into poverty.

Funding Youth Soccer


This Spring I donated $5,000 to support youth soccer in the unincorporated part of Alameda County. The Deputy Sheriffs’ Activities League (DSAL) organizes the youth soccer league which runs year round. This donation will allow more than 1,200 area youth between the ages of 5 and 17 years old to play in the DSAL’s free summer soccer league. Nearly 60% of the youth participating in this year’s league live in San Lorenzo.

Sports play a positive role in the development of youth by helping improve academic performance and self-esteem. This donation will ensure that youth in San Lorenzo and the greater unincorporated part of Alameda County have access to positive after school and weekend activities. 

Keeping our Neighborhood Safe


A few months ago, residents in unincorporated Hayward reached out to me to express their concerns over the intersection at Royal Avenue and West Sunset Boulevard, near Royal Sunset High School. Residents complained that due to speeding cars, students and families walking to nearby schools and to the local corner store were put at risk for injury.

In order to address this issue, I worked with Alameda County Public Works to make the intersection safer. Since then, five “School Warning” signs have been installed to encourage drivers to slow down, and two flashing light signs have been put in place and will alert drivers of pedestrians who are waiting to cross at the intersection. This small but significant improvement will help keep students and families safe in the neighborhood. 

National Nurse's Week


There are close to 3.1 million registered nurses in the United who play an essential role in the safety and quality of care of hospitalized patients. The Alameda County Board of Supervisors recognized May 6-12, 2015 as National Nurses’ Week and celebrated their accomplishments and efforts to improve the health of Alameda County’s diverse communities. 

On May 5, I presented the proclamation to Kinzi Richholtz, the Chief Nurse Executive for the Alameda Health System and other nurses who contribute to the wellbeing of Alameda County residents. It has become increasingly clear that the role of nurses has become more critical given all the  funding cuts in health care and I was happy to honor the nurses who maintain our communities’ health. 


Diane Wydler, Mental Health Board Commisioner


Diane Wydler is the newest member of the Alameda County Mental Health Board. Diane is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who received her Master’s Degree in Counseling from Santa Clara University. Before retiring, she practiced at Family and Children Services, a non-profit agency in San Jose where she worked with clients of all ages and cultures, including some of the area’s most vulnerable populations.

Prior to her role as a therapist, Diane received her Bachelor of Arts degree and California Teaching Credential from the University of California, Berkeley and taught high school for ten years.  Later, she received a certificate in Computer Programming, which led her to a career in Information Technology for 20 years. Diane also served on the Board of Directors of the San Lorenzo Village Homes Association where she worked closely with my office. Diane is dedicated to strengthening services that address emerging health needs and improving community wellness. I am happy to welcome Diane to the County’s Mental Health Commission and look forward to her sharing her expertise to make Alameda County and District 3 a better place to live in. 


Supporting Urban Farming


This March, I joined Alameda County Sheriff Gregory J. Ahern for the groundbreaking of the Dig Deep Farms Food Hub and Commissary Kitchen.  The Food Hub will create jobs, support entrepreneurs, and provide healthy food to our communities. Dig Deep Farms is an urban farming and food service social enterprise of the Alameda County Deputy Sheriffs’ Activities League (DSAL). This program is dedicated to offering training and employment opportunities for local residents, along with providing fresh, healthy food to our community. Dig Deep Farms has provided jobs or internships for more than 40 people since it started in 2010 and currently employs eight individuals.

With the building of the Food Hub and Commissary Kitchen- located on Fairmont Drive in San Leandro, Dig Deep Farms expects to launch its consumer packaged goods line, expand employment and assist in the development of other local food entrepreneurs.


Upcoming Events 

Alameda Transportation Commission
The Alameda Transportation Commission is launching the 2016 Countywide Transportation Plan (CTP) update and is soliciting applications for projects and programs to include in the plan.

The first two application workshops are happening on Thursday, June 4 from 11AM-1PM at Alameda CTC’s office at 1111 Broadway, Suite 800 in Oakland. The second workshop will be held on July 9.

The application process will take place online and will begin on June 1. Click here to learn more.

Park Street Bridge Closure
The Alameda County Public Works Agency began rehabilitation and bridge deck repair work on Monday, May 11. This repair work will require the Park Street Bridge to be CLOSED to vehicle traffic, bicyclists, and pediatricians Sundays to Thursdays, from 8:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., through August 14.

For more information on the High Street and Park Street Bridge Rehabilitation Projects visit…/updates/high-park_bridge_project.htm or contact the Construction Department at (510) 670-5981.

ARTSFUND Grants Program
The Alameda County Arts Commission has opened the application process for the 2015 ARTSFUND Grants Program. The ARTSFUND Grants Program supports all types of arts programming, including dance, literature, media arts, and music. Information can be found at the Arts Commission’s website, at 


Community Resources 

Boards and Commissions
Are you interested in serving Alameda County and District 3? There are currently several openings to become a District 3 representative. Learn more at Applications, including a cover letter and resume, can be submitted to

Healthy Homes
Lead poisoning, asthma triggers, and safety issues in the home are a serious threat to our children’s health. The Alameda County Healthy Homes Department has services to help low-income residents and property owners make homes safer for young children. If you own a home or apartment building built prior to 1978 in Alameda, Berkeley, Emeryville, or Oakland, you are eligible for a free-in-home or phone consultation to help you identify and reduce lead hazards. Other services include free lead paint repair and free trainings. For more information or to sign up for these services, call 510-567-8280 or visit

Project Leadership Series
Are you a parent of a child with special health needs? Family Voices of California is looking families who can be prepared and supported to advocate for improved healthcare. Family Voices will offer a Project Leadership training series, which will include a $250 stipend for participants who complete all seven sessions. Free on-site childcare and lunch will be offered. To apply to Project Leadership or for more information, contact Lilian Ansari at 510-547-7322 ext. 122 or, or visit

AAA Senior Resource Guide
Alameda County’s Area Agency on Aging website has elder service tips, news, and resources. Click here to visit the website and learn more about resources available to all seniors in Alameda County.

Alameda County Resource Guide

For information and referrals on Alameda County programs, check out our resource guide:

Starting a Local Business
Do you want to open a business in Alameda County but don’t know where to begin? Alameda County has two great guides that will help you get started:

-          Guide #1: Starting a Business in Alameda County

-          Guide #2: Starting a Business in Unincorporated Alameda County

  • (Ashland, Castlewood, Castro Valley, Cherryland, Fairview, Happy Valley, Hillcrest Knolls, San Lorenzo, and Sunol)

East Bay Connects
Are you connected? East Bay Connects provides access to low-cost broadband for as little as $10 a month. New broadband subscribers can receive a free home computer, free digital literacy training, a year of free tech support, and access to many resources to learn how to use broadband. For more information, call East Bay Connects at (886) 460-7439 or contact James Nixon at (510) 377-7224 or