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Environmental Health

News and Announcements

October 4, 2013

REHS Continuining Education Workshops

The San Francisco Environmental Health Accreditation Agency is offering the following REHS Continuing Education Workshops on October 23, 2013:

To register for a REHS Continuing Education Workshop, contact Karen Yu at (415) 252-3957. Check out the 2013 REHS Continuing Workshop Training Schedule for more details on other clasess being offered in San Francisco and class location specifics.

September 25, 2013

Free Screenings of "MisLEAD: America's Secret Epidemic," a New Documentary Film

The San Francisco Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program and Get the Lead Out, a Bay Area coalition of lead poisoning prevention leaders, invite you to a free screening of a new feature-length documentary entitled MisLEAD: America's Secret Epidemic. MisLEAD follows Tamara Rubin, an Oregon mother whose sons were poisoned by lead, as she travels the country meeting with experts and other parents of poisoned children. View the film trailer here.

Free scrennings will be held in San Francisco on Friday, October 25, 2013 at two locations and times:

  • San Francisco Main Library, Koret Auditorium, 100 Larkin Street @ 2:00 pm
  • James Lick Middle School Auditorium, 1220 Noe Street @ 7:30 pm

To RSVP for one of the free screenings, visit For more details, see this informational flyer (pdf).

May 1, 2013

Heat Advisory in Effect for San Francisco

An excessive heat advisory has been issued for San Francisco. Keep cool, drink lots of water, and avoid physical activity as much as possible. Educate your elderly friends or relatives about the symptoms of heat illness and contact someone immediately if they start to feel unwell. To be prepared:

  • Ensure you have access to plenty of water, ice in the freezer, and an air conditioner if possible.
  • Try not to move around too much, especially in the sun.
  • For relief from the heat, consider visiting a community center, movie theater, public library, swimming pool or shaded park.

For more information, see this Frequently Asked Questions document or call 311. Dial 911 if it's an emergency.

April 12, 2013

San Francisco Pedestrian Strategy Released!

Mayor Ed Lee announced the release of the San Francisco Pedestrian Strategy today! The Pedestrian Strategy follows the 2010 Pedestrian Safety Executive Directive which set a city goal of reducing serious and fatal pedestrian injuries by 25% by 2016 and by 50% by 2021. The Pedestrian Strategy provides a comprehensive set of actions and performance measures to make city streets more safe and walkable. Key actions in the strategy include:

  1. Upgrading 44 miles of streets where injuries are most concentrated, 5 miles per year through 2021;
  2. Implement a citywide pedestrian safety marketing campaign;
  3. Improving safety around schools and senior centers with high pedestrian injury;
  4. Advancing complete collision and injury surveillance to inform prevention and monitoring progress; and
  5. Targeting police enforcement efforts on the City's high-injury corridors and intersections.

To learn more and read the Pedestrian Strategy, click here.

April 5, 2013

Day 5 of National Public Health Week - Empowering a Healthy Community

Friday's National Public Health Week theme is "Empowering a Healthy Community."

What does a healthy city look like? San Francisco Department of Public Health's Environmental Health Section collaborated with over 20 diverse organizations to design the Sustainable Communities Index (SCI) an innovative tool that uses data to advance healthy communities. This tool has over 100+ indicators with geographically detailed maps to empower community members to advocate for better environments where they live, work, learn, and play. The SCI is also part of our Open Data initiative to make our community more informed, connected and create citizen innovation through government data.

April 4, 2013

Day 4 of National Public Health Week - Protecting You While You're on the Move

Thursday's National Public Health Week theme is "Protecting You While You're on the Move."

Did you know that more than half of San Francisco's over 800 annual pedestrian injuries occur on only 5% of our City's streets? This San Francisco Department of Public Health's Environmental Health map was voted one of the best Open Data Releases of 2012. The San Francisco Pedestrian Strategy – soon to be released - prioritizes engineering and enforcement measures on high injury corridors with the goal of saving lives, in addition to potentially millions of dollars in healthcare costs.

April 3, 2013

Day 3 of National Public Health Week - Creating a Healthy Workplace

Wednesday's National Public Health Week theme is "Creating a Healthy Workplace."

Wage theft is bad for health! A recent survey found 76% of restaurant workers did not receive overtime pay and 50% did not earn minimum wage. Partnering with local and state labor enforcement agencies and local worker centers, San Francisco Department of Public Health's Environmental Health Section has suspended health permits of employers found guilty of wage theft. Over the past two years, we have recover tens of thousands of dollars in back wages owed to SF restaurant employees. For more information, visit our website.

April 2, 2013

Day 2 of National Public Health Week - Providing a Safe Environment for Children at School

Tuesday's National Public Health Week theme is "Providing a Safe Environment for Children at School."

Food in our schools defines lifelong children's eating habits and prepares them for learning. With a decade of seed funding and technical support from the San Francisco Department of Public Health's Environmental Health Section and a committed parent community, San Francisco has become a cutting edge urban school food environment, establishing strong food policies beginning in 2003, eliminating competitive foods in 2010, rolling out grab and go breakfast programs in most middle and high schools in 2011, and in 2012 deciding to source lunches from a local company, Revolution Foods, who specialize in freshly prepared food from sustainable, local sources. For more information, see the districts newsletter and our website.

April 1, 2013

National Public Health Week Starts Today! Public Health is ROI: Save Lives, Save Money

Today kicks off National Public Health Week! National Public Health Week is a time to recognize the contributions of public health and highlight issues that are important to improving our nation. This year's focus is "Public Health is ROI: Save Lives, Save Money." Monday's theme is "Ensuring a Safe, Healthy Home."

Did you know nearly six million households live with housing problems which negatively impact health? Children are most severely affected suffering from asthma hospitalization, injuries and lead poisoning. San Francisco's Children's Environmental Health Promotion Program (CEHP) has been proactively addressing this health issue by offering housing assessments to improve conditions for families. We plan to see return on investment through a reduction in medical bills, energy costs and lost wages. CEHP completed its pilot program in 2010 and is launching a second program based on overwhelming need. For more information see our 2010 report and our website.

March 27, 2013

Restaurant Inspection Scores Now on Yelp!

Restaurant inspection scores are officially live on Yelp in San Francisco! Inspection data is collected directly from the San Francisco Department of Public Health's Environmental Health program and updated on a regular basis. Check out the inspection history for your favorite (or least favorite) San Francisco restaurant at:

Including restaurant inspection scores on Yelp is part of a larger effort by San Francisco to make government data more accessible and is the result of a collaboration with New York City and Yelp to develop a national standard and protocol for sharing restaurant inspection data. For more information on this effort, click here.

December 19, 2012

New Cottage Food Law Goes into Effect on January 1, 2013

The California Homemade Food Act (AB1616), also known as the Cottage Food Act, goes into effect on January 1, 2013. This law allows small food businesses that produce "low-risk foods" (such as bake goods, candies, jam/jellies, desserts, and nuts) to operate out of a private home with limited regulatory oversight, as long as certain criteria are met. For more information, click here.