By: Daniel Richman

Baseball season is right around the corner (insert collective cheer here), which means our San Francisco Giants will yet again embrace the task of defending a World Championship, their second title in three years. This year, the Giants have decided to help our city in a new way, partnering with Mayor Ed Lee to launch an exciting new anti-litter campaign, “Giant Sweep.” Apparently ‘sweeping’ the Tigers in the World Series wasn’t enough for these guys…

Champs Kickoff “Giant Sweep” Program

Back in September, Travel and Leisure ranked San Francisco the 11th dirtiest city in America, two rankings dirtier than Las Vegas. In 2012 alone, Department of Public Works (DPW) cleaning crews picked up nearly 23,000 tons of litter and illegally dumped materials (damaged couches, TVs, etc.) from city streets and sidewalks. According to DPW Director Mohammed Nuru, while keeping San Francisco looking good is a top priority, it is also a “monumental undertaking.” Realizing this, independent organizations like the SF Clean City Coalition have worked for years to support DPW beautification efforts and encourage a greater sense of neighborhood ownership. That said, with DPW cleaning crews already working 24 hours a day, seven days a week, it seems this task is one, even with private help, that they cannot possibly accomplish on their own.

Perhaps that’s why earlier this month, with Giants ownership and “The Preacher” Hunter Pence, Mayor Lee stepped in to support this beleaguered department, introducing a new citywide campaign: The Giant Sweep. For the recently named “greenest city” in the U.S., it only seems appropriate.

According to the Mayor’s official site, all city agencies have been directed to now include the Giant Sweep into their agendas. This means the Municipal Transportation Agency (MTA) will improve efforts to keep buses/streetcars clean; the department on the environment will incorporate the Giant Sweep theme into their outreach to schools; and the Parks and Rec. department will integrate anti-litter initiatives into their programs and special events.

In addition to renewing our focus on cleanliness and safety, it also represents an opportunity for departmental collaboration and a chance to further educate our youth on the importance of protecting the environment. With partnerships even extending into the arts, the SF Arts Commission and Steve Silver’s Beach Blanket Babylon have also joined the movement, ‘The Sweep’ appears poised to do so in a truly comprehensive way.

Keep San Francisco Clean!

While a renewed emphasis on cleanliness can only help San Francisco, it is the energy and action of those willing to get involved that really makes the difference. We believe that Giant SweepSan Francisco is one of the greatest cities in the world, and that it should not only play the part, but look the part as well. If you agree, step up to the plate and take the Giant Sweep pledge today!