According to census figures, the city lost 5,278 people younger than 18 between 2000 and 2010, and many of the families fleeing the city are middle-income and African American. "That has concerned city officials and family advocates who say families with children are essential to a diverse, thriving city," writes Knight.
Reflecting a downward trend in effect since at least the 1960s, "[j]ust 13.4 percent of San Francisco's 805,235 residents are younger than 18, the smallest percentage of any major city in the country. By contrast, San Jose's percentage of children is 24.8 percent, Oakland's is 21.3 percent, Boston's is 16.8 percent and Seattle's is 15.4 percent."
The flight of families from the city due to rising housing and living costs, and a host of other suspected factors, was the subject of a special Board of Supervisors hearing held on Thursday, and called by Supervisor Mark Farrell.