The National Black Nurses Association has just yanked their annual conference out of Florida and moved it to San Francisco, calling Florida “a hostile dangerous environment” for Black medical professionals.
Usually when you hear a story about professional conferences in San Francisco these days, it’s a story about the conferences leaving for another city. But SF represented itself pretty darned well with this year’s Dreamforce conference and last month’s APEC Summit, so maybe we’ve turned a corner.
And while it may be more for unrelated, external political reasons, Chronicle reports that SF has poached a major nurses’ conference from Florida, the 2024 National Black Nurses Association (NBNA) National Institute and Conference.
The NBNA had been scheduled to hold their six-day 2024 conference in Hollywood, Florida. But their members voted in October to move the conference out of Florida over the state’s legislators’ anti-diversity initiatives. And the Chron confirmed that they’ve chosen San Francisco as the site of their conference this coming summer.
In their October statement announcing they were ditching Florida, the NBNA said, “Our primary reason for this cancellation and move is our duty to ensure the safety and well-being of NBNA members, given the current political and social climate in Florida. The passage of anti-Black policies and laws, which have taken a destructive position to erase and silence Black history and restrict diversity, equity, and inclusion programs in Florida schools, together with the NAACP travel ban and the recent senseless, racially motivated, hate-fueled murders of three innocent Black Americans in Jacksonville, Florida has created a hostile, dangerous environment in the state.”
And now we know the conference is relocated to the Marriott Marquis at Fourth and Mission streets. That’s the hotel with the The View lounge, that 39th floor rooftop cocktail bar with unparalleled views of the city. (And it has underground ballrooms that connect to the Moscone Center.)
Neither the NBNA nor the Marriott Marquis would confirm to the Chronicle how many guests were expected to attend. But the NBNA website says the conference normally attracts “over 1,200 nurses and nursing students” and “over 100 exhibitors.”
The NBNA National Institute and Conference is now scheduled for July 23-28, 2024, right here in San Francisco.