Volunteers will begin circulating petitions at the finish line of the America’s Finest City Half-Marathon in Balboa Park Sunday morning, recall organizers said. The race is set to begin at the Cabrillo National Monument at 7 a.m. and wind its way through city streets to the finish in the Pan American Plaza.
A kickoff event will be held at the Town & Country Resort, Pacific Ballroom, from 1 to 4 p.m. to meet volunteers and hand out petitions.
A march and rally is set for 2 p.m. at Civic Center Plaza. Marchers are encouraged to wear white T-shirts bearing their own respectful slogans, and ride the trolley to avoid parking hassles, organizers said.
“This march is for the people to send a message that Mr. Filner must immediately resign or be removed from office,” said Kathryn Vaughn, an attorney and workshop leader on sexual harassment in the workplace. “San Diego deserves to have a leader with honor, integrity and respect for all people. Bob Filner’s appalling behavior will not be tolerated and is unacceptable for our city’s leader.”
Recall organizers said more than 800 people have signed up to volunteer in the effort to collect nearly 102,000 valid signatures by the deadline of Sept. 26. Eighteen have been named area directors for various geographic regions within the city.
“We’re so gratified and encouraged by the enthusiastic response to our call for volunteers,” said Michael Pallamary, a land use consultant who filed the petition to recall Filner. “This is a tremendous grassroots undertaking — truly the people taking back their government from an abuser who has betrayed San Diegans, demeaned women and who can no longer lead our city.”
The recall petitions will be available for download beginning Sunday from the recallbobfilner.com website, which will also include a real-time mapping function that shows where San Diegans can go to add their names.
Filner has been publicly accused of various forms of sexual harassment, from groping to unwanted advances, by 16 women. He also faces investigations into alleged misuse of city credit cards and shakedowns of developers.