Statement from Joe D’Alessandro, president and CEO of the San Francisco Travel Association

Published on : Tuesday, December 24, 2013

San-Francisco-Travel-300x91San Francisco Travel president and CEO Joe D’Alessandro issued the following statement regarding the San Francisco African American Chamber of Commerce’s call for a visitor boycott:

“The mission and function of San Francisco Travel is to attract domestic and international visitors to San Francisco by promoting our city as a world-class visitor destination to the rest of the world.

The diversity of San Francisco – coupled with our inclusionary and welcoming environment toward all ethnicities and walks of life – is one of the most compelling selling points of our city. Any issue that diminishes San Francisco’s standing as a welcoming and inclusionary community is of major concern to San Francisco Travel.

The San Francisco African American Chamber of Commerce (SFAACC) has recently raised troubling data related to the long-term, structural issues of economic and social disparity in San Francisco with respect to the African American community and San Francisco’s shrinking African American population.

We agree with the SFAACC that the broad issues of demographics and economic disparity among various ethnic groups must be addressed in order to ensure that San Francisco remains welcoming to a diversity of visitors.

One of the most direct, effective and efficient tools available to San Francisco to help address some of these issues is to take steps to attract visitors who would be most interested in visiting and supporting African American owned and operated business.

A primary means of achieving this goal is the attraction of African American based meetings, conventions and conferences. Unfortunately, the SFAACC’s call for a boycott will remove one of the most effective tools San Francisco has at its disposal to assist in addressing the issues SFAACC hopes to resolve.

So, rather than pursue boycott actions that threaten the economic vitality of the entire city in general, and the economic vitality of the African American business community in particular, we hope the SFAACC will work with a broad coalition of community businesses, organizations and leaders to identify solutions to address these concerns. San Francisco Travel is committed to do what we can within the scope of our mission, function and authority to participate.”

Source:- San Francisco Travel

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