"Access 4 All" Program Gives Refurbished Computers to Schools, Community Centers

(April 25, 2005)

Second-hand computers allows school to re-open computer lab

San Francisco – In a bid to increase San Franciscans' access to adequate working computers, the city is partnering with a private recycling company, Computer Recycling Center (CRC), to donate refurbished computers to schools and other public institutions. This re-use effort will also keep computers and computer monitors, which are considered hazardous waste, from going into the waste stream. The campaign, called "Access 4 All: Recycle a ComputerConnect a Community," is set to launch in the Bayview and roll out to other organizations citywide.

"Access 4 All is a win- win for the community. Advances in technology are rapidly increasing the market for computers and other electronic products. Meanwhile, the disposal pace is faster than we can keep up with. We need to find ways to reuse and give them another life," explained Mayor Gavin Newsom. "Access 4 All will open the door to second-hand items and reuse."

Access 4 All, coordinated by San Francisco's Environment Department, launches Monday, April 25 at two schools in Bayview Hunters Point: Charles Drew Elementary School and Gloria R. Davis Middle School, which the School District identified as needing new computers. One of the computer laboratories at Gloria R. Davis had to be closed down because the old computers were not meeting student needs and there was no money for new computers. Access 4 All will help to re-open the computer lab at Gloria R. Davis.

The campaign will replace Pentium 1s & 2s with refurbished/updated Pentium 2s & 3s. For every computer donated, CRC will take back older models for recycling and/or proper disposal.

Obsolete computers, televisions, and many other devices also known as Electronic-waste (E-waste) are becoming a huge problem in the waste-stream. Millions of tons of e-waste are ending up in the landfills. E-waste contains a variety of toxic materials including lead, copper, and other heavy metals that leach into the environment and can hurt public health. In California, the disposal of electronic waste is illegal at all landfills.

Companies like CRC are finding ways to reuse old equipment. CRC takes back old computers and refurbishes them to give to non-profit groups and organizations that cannot afford upgrades or better features. For more information: www.crc.org.


Press Contacts:

SF Environment, Gloria Chan (415) 355-3733

SFUSD, Melissa Mooney (415) 241-6565


Department of the Environment

City and County of San Francisco

11 Grove Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

Telephone: (415) 355-3700 | Fax: (415) 554-6393

Email: environment@sfgov.org | www.sfenvironment.com