The City of San Fernando: A City filled with Gentrification, Shady City Regulations and Unlivable Wages

Aaron Aguilera
3 min readAug 28, 2020
My mother and I when I graduated High School in San Fernando in June 2017.

As a kid, I never knew how the city I grew up in would be predominately Latino. The City of San Fernando was where I was born and raised until my family and I moved to the City of Arleta when I turned 13. When I moved out of the City of San Fernando, I learned that 90% of the community is Latino. With this being discovered, it makes sense that there is some form of gentrification and mismanagement of the City even as of today. Take North Workman Street for example, I grew up on the 300th block of North Workman Street and over the years, not much has changed on my block. But on the intersecting streets such as the 400th block and North Workman Street and the intersecting street called Fourth Street, the City had decided to repave the roads and re-pipe the street water and sewage lines in 2018.

The directions from the community I grew up in to San Fernando City Hall.

Within the business portion of San Fernando such as Truman Street, the mom and pop shops that have been in business for over 10 years have been put out of business due to the City putting gentrified measures into the City limits by creating a Plaza Center on Truman Street located beside the San Fernando Mall on San Fernando Road. Businesses like Starbucks, Chipotle, and YogurtLand forced many businesses to go out of business for good due to more and more mainstream businesses taking over the opportunity for these businesses to make revenue.

Speaking of revenue, I’d like to ask the City Council as to why the employees at Chick Fil’ A and YogurtLand are still only making $14.25 an hour while in the WingStop where I work at, I’m able to make the minimum wage of $15 an hour. One of the few ways that I know this community gets their news from is from The Sun Newspaper. Another way is through various Press Releases within the City Council meetings. Because of COVID-19, more and more residents will be experiencing homelessness within the next few years due to the rise in unemployment and potential rent increase by the thousands.

Article image of City Council member Jose Hernandez leading up to recall.

When I moved out of this City in 2013, I’ve been able to figure out why a lot of the City Council members were deemed as corrupt and were called upon the residences to be “recalled” 4 years prior. In this Ballotpedia article, the election to recall San Fernando City Council members Jose Hernandez and Julie Ruelas was taken place on January 13, 2009. The reasoning behind this recall election ranged from “mismanagement of city resources and negative attitude on the City Council for the last six years,” said Ernesto Hernandez. According to the Los Angeles Daily News writing, “The recall was driven by a variety of issues, including residents’ frustration with slow progress in downtown development and the long-delayed construction of a city aquatic center. A lawsuit in which a developer accused Hernandez of making anti-Semitic remarks before the city denied him a permit also generated concern.”

After the recall election had passed to recall City Councilmembers Hernandez and Ruelas, the councilmembers that replaced them were City Councilmembers Brenda Esqueda and Ernesto Hernandez. Esqueda was elected and Hernandez was chosen by the voters to help make a change within the City Council management.