The San Mateo County Board of Supervisors began its regular meeting Tuesday in honor of the victims of last week’s Half Moon Bay shooting. Supervisors have committed to improving living conditions for farm workers on licensed farms in the county and identifying housing in unlicensed locations. .
Seven people were killed and one injured in shootings on two farms in Half Moon Bay on January 23. shooting.
In addition to the Standing Memorial at Mac Dutra Plaza, multiple memorial services are planned around Half Moon Bay this week. An interfaith memorial service is scheduled for Tuesday at 4:00 pm at the Boys & Girls Club Event Center at 530 Kelly Avenue. A community gathering is scheduled for Tuesday at 6 p.m. at his IDES Hall at 530 Main Street. Friday at 5pm at the Mac Dutra Plaza.
Supervisor David Pyne said at a meeting Tuesday that he was heartbroken about the shooting.
“I get angry too,” Pyne said. “I am angry that there are farm workers who have to live in such difficult conditions and receive substandard wages.”
Living conditions on both farms were scrutinized following the killings. The sheriff’s office explains that workplace issues were the motive.
“People who were there seemed traumatized even to see the living conditions of the farm workers,” said supervisor Noelia Corzo. This is what they have.”
The Board began the meeting by having Reverend Lauren McCombs, of the Episcopal Diocese of California, offer words of reflection, recite a prayer from St. Francis, and read the names of the murdered victims.
Virginia Chan Kilai, spokesperson for the San Mateo County Chinese American Association, noted that the surname is read first in Mandarin. Six of his shooting victims were farm workers of Chinese descent. Kirai was invited to speak by his supervisor, Ray Mueller, and later asked by Pine to make public comments.
In a public comment, Killai said the shooting exposed a resource gap for Chinese workers in the county and urged the county to provide more culturally appropriate counseling for farm workers. She said there was a complete lack of understanding and respect for Chinese farm workers due to their ethnocentric behavior.
“We Chinese cannot and will not remain invisible.”
The shooting took place in District 3 of the county, which is represented by Mueller. He said he was in the area a year ago when he marched with farm workers to help victims of the Uvalde, Texas shooting.
Mueller said the shootings shed light on how vulnerable people and farm workers live in the county, saying many of the farm workers in the county are functionally homeless. rice field.
“The best way to respect them is to create a policy,” Mueller said. “We have to plant signposts in the ground that say we’re going to do things differently.”
The county needed more permanent, affordable housing for farm workers, like the Moon Ridge Complex, which opened in 2001, and worked with farmers to upgrade existing housing. he said. He also called for a survey and report detailing the number of Asian farm workers living and working in the county, saying the figures were not well known.
Supervisor David Canepa said housing solutions are dependent on state and federal support and recommends states expand both the Emergency COVID-19 Housing Program and Project Home Key Hotel Purchases as options. Did.
“This is the most tragic mass shooting in San Mateo County history, and there is a lot of grief,” Canepa said.
The county has activated crisis response teams and provided mental health counselors to those in need. You can contact them at (800) 686-0101.
Canepa says $1.5 million has been spent on farmworker housing since the county’s housing department began work in 2014, and $1.8 million is included in this year’s budget for the issue. said. Funding was primarily available through funds raised from Measure K, an extension of the county sales tax approved in 2016.
The county is now housing 37 people displaced by the shooting, including 18 families and 11 children, according to county director Mike Caraghy. We called on members of the community to be part of our housing solution and asked people to open up to affected families, especially families with children in Half Moon Bay schools who were unwilling to move.
Callagy said several services were provided, including translation, meals, employment services, victim services and mental health counseling. Refugees were given $1,000 to $2,000, depending on family size, to make up for the loss compensation provided by the nonprofit Coastside Hope.
San Mateo County has 18 registered farms with at least five residents on the property, but Carragee said there are likely to be many more, and the county is currently relocating them. We are working to identify them, and we refer to those locations as shadow sites.
“We cannot allow this to continue in our county,” he said.
Later in the meeting, in a separate declaration previously on the agenda, the Board recognized the week of February 2-7 as National Gun Violence Survivors Week, and announced that San Mateo County will celebrate the previous January 2023 date. Declared new year. The latter declaration states that 32.4% of the county’s population is Asian and Pacific Islander.