Overcoming adversity to help San Franciscans of all circumstances

4/1/2010 Bay Area Reporter

Barnes’s background and story will likely resonate with many District 10 residents.
Barnes, who is HIV-positive, is of mixed race: his father is African American and his mother is white. He grew up in New York City, dropped out of high school and headed west at the age of 16.
He landed in San Francisco during Pride month in 1997 and never left. He earned his GED and went to work for the nonprofit agency Health Initiatives for Youth.
Asked about his health, Barnes said “I feel well enough to run. I am one of the lucky ones; I haven’t been extremely ill ever.”
But he allowed that his health is something that changes every day.
“It would be dishonest to say anything else. Everyday isn’t great,” he said.
In terms of the campaign, Barnes said he doesn’t intend to shy away from his HIV status or sexual orientation. He doesn’t see either as being a negative, since many LGBT people and people living with HIV and AIDS live in District 10.

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Progressives herald Bill Barnes candidacy for District 10 Supervisor

March 12, 2010San Francisco Bay Guardian

Bill Barnes, who is currently working as Sup. Michela Alioto-Pier’s legislative aide, and has previously served as researcher for SF Firefighters Local 798, legislative aide for Sup. Fiona Ma, and legislative aide and campaign manager for Sup. Chris Daly, has entered the race.

Barnes, who turns 33 on April 3, says he is working between now and his birthday, on qualifying for public financing–a vital step for anyone who wants to compete against the handful of candidates that are backed by big private money in this race.

Barnes says he decided to throw his hat into the ring because there has not been enough talk about neighborhood issues, social inequity and displacement.

“The talk is always about creating jobs, but jobs for who?” Barnes said. “Will it be for folks who have lived in the community for their entire lives, or folks from out of town?”

In the next decade or two, it’s likely that the majority of subcontracts in the city will be centered in District 10, but there are no guarantees of who will get that work.

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