Corruption and Mismanagement at SF Museums Spark Demands by City Workers for Independent Oversight Committee
City Workers and Museum Patrons Call for Action to Stop Abuse and Corruption
Security guards,and admission attendants who are SEIU 1021 members at the Asian Art Museum, de Young Museum and the Legion of Honor, testified on Friday about the rampant abuse and corruption by board members and top executives at the Fine Arts Museum (FAM) and the Corporation of Fine Arts Museums (COFAM). Their testimonies detailed financial mismanagement, lack of transparency, and unsafe working conditions at FAM and COFAM at the Government Audit Oversight Committee.
Museum guards and admission attendants, the vast majority are people of color, contend that there is a serious double standard at FAM and COFAM: guards and admission attendants have a reduced workweek, part-time status, while museum management has receive full time status and benefits.
In addition to ensuring that the museums are well protected and workers have full time work, workers are calling on the City and County of San Francisco and the COFAM to agree to the creation of an oversight body with investigative and audit powers. This oversight committee would have the power to review the financial and managerial decisions at the city’s most prominent fine arts institution.
“The city has an obligation to protect these world class institutions by addressing the governance and oversight of the workers and the safety of museum visitors. We need safeguards to protect the public’s assets and the use of museum funds,” said Joseph Bryant, SEIU 1021 San Francisco Vice President.