Putting Our Values Into Action

By the time you read this, your San Francisco Bicycle Coalition board of directors will have approved a bold new five-year Strategic Plan to guide our work through 2022. I want to thank all of you who informed the scope and direction of this plan by attending an open house or a forum, responding to our survey, or sitting down for a listening session. I also want to thank the board, staff and members who served on the committee that analyzed all of the data that resulted from the planning process, and helped draft and revise the plan until we arrived at the final product. We are pleased to share this exciting plan in detail with members and the world in the coming weeks, so watch your inboxes.

In a time where our values are under attack nationally, we are proud to adopt four core values that help guide us as we work towards achieving our mission of promoting the bicycle for everyday transportation:

TRANSPORTATION JUSTICE: We advocate for everyone’s equitable access to safe, affordable and healthy transportation to create a just city.

SUSTAINABILITY: We fight climate change by enabling and encouraging more people to bike more often.

PEOPLE POWER: We create positive change through coalition-building and collective action.

JOY: We celebrate bicycling as a fun, healthy way to get around and connect with each other and our communities.

Each time I read these values, I feel a sense of renewed commitment to our mission, and a dedication to holding ourselves to a high standard. If we live these values through the work of SF Bicycle Coalition, I know that we will continue to make even more significant progress toward a city that is a safe, just and livable place for everyone.

Sometimes, however, we will need to navigate situations where these values may seem at first glance in opposition to one another.

Take our cover story on bicycle theft, for example. Our value of Transportation Justice calls on us to recognize the experience of black and brown communities with law enforcement and to resist advocating for enforcement policies that may bring further harm. People Power calls on us to come together as individuals to form a louder voice for action. This past summer and fall, I heard from many members upset about theft who demanded we support aggressive police enforcement of theft, particularly of open air chop shops. On page 5, you can read more about the thinking, values and standards that guided our work this summer on the critical issue of bike theft.

Solving problems that others would too easily give up on is at the heart of what your SF Bicycle Coalition does. Whether it’s demanding the highest quality protected bike lanes on our streets or holding City officials accountable to their promises, we will be there seeking the best solutions in a complex and changing world. I hope you will join us in embracing these values and supporting this crucial work. Please make a year-end, tax-deductible gift to the SF Bicycle Coalition Education Fund at sfbike.org/donate. We need your support to help our movement pedal the extra mile in 2018. Best wishes to you, your families, and our biking community for a happy and healthy holiday season!

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