The San Francisco Board of Supervisors’ rules committee postponed its vote this afternoon on selecting an applicant for a vacant seat on the city’s LGBT Aging Policy Task Force.
Most of the five applicants for the vacancy failed to appear for the hearing today (Thursday, October 3), while two of the committee members, Supervisors Norman Yee (District 7) and Malia Cohen (District 10), said they had not met with any of them prior to the vote.
District 5 Supervisor London Breed said she was prepared to recommend that the seat be given to psychotherapist G. Joyce Pierson, (seen at left) who was the project director for the LGBT Elder Law Project at the National Center for Lesbian Rights.
“The last time we dealt with this issue we had a number of male candidates and we expressed concern we didn’t have enough women on this committee, ” said Breed. “Pierson seems to be the best candidate for this particular seat. I am happy to continue the item but comfortable moving forward as well.”
Pierson had contacted Yee’s office to inform him she would not be able to attend the hearing. He suggested they not vote on the matter until she could be present, while Cohen asked staff to alert the applicants they need to attend the hearing if they were serious about being named to the panel.
The other applicants are Carla Harris, 50, who identifies as lesbian and is board president of Pathways to Safety; gay AIDS survivor and activist Gregg Cassin; gay lawyer James Wagoner, 57, who is HIV positive and launched the GLBT Seniors Advocacy Project at Bay Area Legal Aid; and Marshall Feldman, coordinator of psychotherapy services at the UCSF Alliance Health Project.
The person who wins the endorsement of the committee must then be approved by the full board. They will fill out the term of the panel’s former vice chair, Jazzie Collins, a transgender activist who died this summer.
The committee voted unanimously to indefinitely postpone the item and for it to be brought back at the discretion of Yee, who chairs it.
As the Bay Area Reporter‘s Political Notebook disclosed in today’s paper, the volunteer body is now expected deliver its recommendations for how San Francisco officials can address the needs of older LGBT residents in March of 2014.