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Statement: “Mayor Filner is the CEO of a government organization of almost 20,000 employees, at least half of whom are women,” state Assembly Majority Leader Toni Atkins said in a July 12 press release.

Determination: False

Analysis: Last week, several high-profile San Diego Democrats called on Mayor Bob Filner to resign in the midst of mounting sexual harassment allegations.

State Assembly Majority Leader Toni Atkins was among them. Atkins, who represents coastal areas from Imperial Beach to Solana Beach, said Filner’s alleged mistreatment of women compromises his ability to lead the city.

After all, Atkins said, the city employs 20,000 staffers, at least half of whom are women.

We decided to vet this claim because the city is among the region’s top employers and it would be telling to find out how many of its employees are female.

We quickly confirmed that the city has far fewer staffers than Atkins claimed.

A spokesman said that, as of Tuesday, the city employs 10,296 people.

Atkins’ spokeswoman said the assemblywoman had relied on the San Diego Daily Transcipt‘s San Diego SourceBook website for that information. When contacted by Voice of San Diego, the newspaper said it had inadvertently included an incorrect number in the online version of the SourceBook. It’s since been changed to reflect the total staffing figure the city provided at the time of the news outlet’s request.

This means the first portion of Atkins’ statement is false, but what about her claim that at least half of city employees are women?

Here’s a look at the gender split among city employees:

It’s clear women make up much less than half of the city employee population.

In fact, only about 34 percent of city staffers are female, while men make up 66 percent of the city’s staff, so Atkins earns a false rating for this portion of her statement too.

If you disagree with our determination or analysis, please express your thoughts in the comments section of this blog post. Explain your reasoning.

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Lisa Halverstadt

Lisa is a senior investigative reporter who digs into some of San Diego's biggest challenges including homelessness, city real estate debacles, the region's...

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