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Why a MissionWord?

Updated: Feb 22, 2019

United To Save The Mission, a coalition of community groups and individual activists seeking to protect and enhance the Mission neighborhood, started MissionWord in December of 2018 to tell our stories of the search for community preservation and equitable outcomes in the face of a dire displacement crisis.

Our stories of cultural stabilization and community empowerment are a real-time chronicle of the struggle against the negative impacts of gentrification here in our neighborhood, the Mission.

San Francisco's Mission District has been the city's historic gateway neighborhood for immigrants, runaways, and others seeking refuge from where they started, and for the past five decades has steadily grown to become the center of the Latinx community in the city.

But recently this neighborhood has become embroiled in a fight for the very existence of what made it a special home to so many who have needed such a home - a literal hot zone of economic transformation and unfettered development, with accompanying displacement on a massive scale. According to the latest US Census, the neighborhood has lost 8,000 of its Latinx residents, and numerous small, community-serving businesses along with important cultural icons have been pushed out of their spaces, often replaced by more upscale destination sites for tourists and wealthier newcomers to the area.

The need to tell these preservation stories in our own words stems from the disappointing failure of hyper-local media to tell the truth about the community's struggles. We can and must do better to tell these important stories truthfully, personally, and through an equity lens that captures the inherent justice of a community fighting back against its own erasure.

Struggles against gentrification are universal, but what ties them all together no matter where they happen is a community banding together and learning how to fight back to preserve some of what they had against an onslaught of new capital that heedlessly searches for profit anywhere it can find it, often oblivious to what it destroys along the way. We believe that this aggressive search for profit above all else can and must be transformed into equitable outcomes that serve everyone – starting with the most vulnerable among us.

We hope these Mission stories will be of significance to communities everywhere seeking to empower themselves and tip the scales a bit towards justice.

We are UNITED in our resolve to preserve our low-to moderate income residents, our historic Latinx culture, our artists and arts spaces, our community-serving businesses, our nonprofits, and our blue-collar jobs and their industry spaces.

Si se puede. Viva la Misión.

United to Save the Mission

Mission Neighborhood Centers

Homies Organizing the Mission to Empower Youth (HOMEY)

Our Mission No Eviction

San Francisco Latino Democrats

Cultural Action Network

San Francisco Tenants Union

Redstone Labor Temple Association

Calle 24 Latino Cultural District

Housing Rights Committee of San Francisco

Mission Economic Development Agency

Pacific Felt Factory

Impact Hub San Francisco

Media Alliance

Save Capp St

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