The M.H. de Young Memorial Museum, which recently exhibited works by Calder and Picasso, is among the organizations offering free entry for qualified visitors as part of the Museums for All program. <ins>(Courtesy Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco)</ins>

The M.H. de Young Memorial Museum, which recently exhibited works by Calder and Picasso, is among the organizations offering free entry for qualified visitors as part of the Museums for All program. (Courtesy Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco)

City launches free museum access for low-income SF residents

San Francisco officials this week launched the citywide Museums for All program — which provides free and reduced admissions for low-income residents to 21 museums in an effort to support the city’s reopening and recovery.

After a successful initial launch in summer 2019, the program returns for a permanent run, building on a commitment from Mayor London Breed to offer equitable access to arts, cultural and educational opportunities for all, including families.

“All San Franciscans, regardless of their income, deserve the opportunity to experience the joy and inspiration, and community that our incredible arts and cultural institutions have to offer,” Breed said in a statement Tuesday. “As our city recovers and reopens, a permanent San Francisco Museums for All programs will give families an opportunity to engage in safe, healthy, and enriching activities at a time when they need it most.”

Under the program, residents currently receiving public benefits through The City’s Human Services Agency can receive free or reduced admission for up to four people at participating museums. To participate, residents simply have to show their Electronic Benefit Transfer card or Medi-Cal card and proof of San Francisco residency.

The permanent program will give some 225,000 San Franciscans unprecedented access to The City’s premiere cultural institutions, including the M.H. de Young Memorial Museum, the Legion of Honor museum, Asian Art Museum, California Academy of Sciences, Exploratorium, Conservatory of Flowers and the Contemporary Jewish Museum, among many others.

City officials estimate a typical museum trip for a family of four in San Francisco can range anywhere from $20 to $150, often creating a barrier for low-income families.

The Museums for All program was created through San Francisco Treasurer Jose Cisneros’ Financial Justice Project, which works to ensure that The City’s low-income residents can receive discounts on disproportionately high fines and fees.

“No one should be excluded from our world class museums because of the size of their wallet,” Cisneros said. “A truly inclusive city is one where all residents have the opportunity to experience the wonder and excitement of our museums and cultural institutions.”

A complete list of all participating museums and more information about the program can be found at

— Bay City News

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at

Just Posted

Scenes of The City, as San Francisco prepares to fully reopen from COVID-19 pandemic closures on June 15, 2021. (Al Saracevic/The Examiner)
Come back to San Francisco: The City needs you now

Time to get out of the house, people. The City’s been lonely… Continue reading

A surveillance camera outside Macy’s at Union Square on Tuesday, July 28, 2020. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Is the tide turning against surveillance cameras in SF?

Crime-fighting camera networks are springing up in commercial areas all around San… Continue reading

San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott speaks alongside Mayor London Breed at a news conference about 2019 crime statistics at SFPD headquarters on Jan. 21, 2020. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
What the media gets wrong about crime in San Francisco

By Lincoln Mitchell Special to The Examiner Seemingly every day now, you… Continue reading

Vice President Kamala Harris is under fire for her comments in Guatemala earlier this week. (Examiner file photo.)
SF immigration advocates slam Kamala Harris’ ‘betrayal’ to her past

Kamala Harris’ comments earlier this week discouraging Central Americans from traveling to… Continue reading

Youth activists with the Sunrise Movement march along a rural road during their two-week trek from Paradise to San Francisco to call attention to an increase in deadly wildfires as a result of climate change on June 2, 2021. (Photo by Brooke Anderson)
Weeks-long climate march culminates on the Golden Gate Bridge

Lola’s alarm goes off most mornings before dawn. The 17-year-old high school… Continue reading

Most Read