Fifth & Mission

The flagship news podcast of the San Francisco Chronicle. Producer/host Cecilia Lei and director of news Demian Bulwa discuss the biggest stories of the day with Chronicle journalists and newsmakers from around the Bay Area. | Get full digital access to the Chronicle:

When Should You Get the New Omicron Booster?
The latest round of shots is a milestone in how quickly science is able to respond to ever-evolving COVID-19. But with pandemic and vaccination fatigue setting in, does such a breakthrough even matter?
13 min
50 Years of BART: The Good, the Bad and the Weird
Chronicle urban design critic John King and Total SF co-host Peter Hartlaub join host Cecilia Lei to discuss BART's 50th anniversary. Plus: Newsroom developer Emma Stiefel talks about a game that lets YOU design the future of the system.
21 min
How California Is Rethinking Homeless Shelters
Chronicle housing reporter Lauren Hepler joins host Cecilia Lei to explain how shelters are making a policy comeback in cities all over the state — and creating new debates over the merits of "right to shelter" proposals.
15 min
Why This Heat Wave Is Historic
As record-breaking temperatures roar past 110 degrees in some Bay Area cities, Chronicle meteorologist Gerry Diaz joins host Cecilia Lei to talk about what's causing it, the future of heat waves — and how you can beat the heat.
13 min
Photographing a Day In the Life of Women Working
In honor of Labor Day, five Chronicle photojournalists embedded with working moms for 24 hours. Brontë Wittpenn, Gabrielle Lurie and Lea Suzuki join Lily Janiak to talk about what they documented and what it meant to them as the women spent sometimes hectic days working their jobs — including the ones at home that don't come with a paycheck.
17 min
How Gavin Newsom Shaped a Busy Legislative Session
Capitol reporters Sophia Bollag and Dustin Gardiner, fresh off a late night reporting on the final session of the year in the California Legislature, talk to It's All Political on Fifth & Mission host Joe Garofoli about the passage of groundbreaking bills on homelessness and climate change, and what they'll mean for the governor's national profile.
22 min
How Whales Talk to Each Other to Adapt to Clima...
Scientists are learning that the behemoths are better at communicating, and might be more adaptable to climate change, than previously understood. Reporters Tara Duggan and Yoohyun Jung talk to host Dominic Fracassa about what's happening below the surface.
11 min
Evictions Looming at Oakland’s Wood Street Enca...
A legal fight is coming to a head at the sprawling homeless encampment. Reporter Sarah Ravani and Fifth & Mission producer Caron Creighton join host Demian Bulwa to talk about how the residents feel about what's happening, and what comes next.
15 min
Algae Bloom Killing Bay Fish by the Thousands
Fish are going belly up around San Francisco Bay, including in Lake Merritt in Oakland, thanks to a vast algae bloom. What's behind the bloom? Is it related to climate change or the drought? Host Demian Bulwa is joined by Dave Senn of the San Francisco Estuary Institute and Keith Bouma-Gregson of the U.S. Geological Survey.
16 min
"This is Not Normal Me": Long COVID Sufferers S...
An estimated 16 million adults in the United States suffer from long COVID symptoms, with no cure or treatment in sight. Chronicle reporter Nanette Asimov joins host Cecilia Lei to discuss the alternative treatments that some sufferers are turning to. Plus: Chronicle reporter Yoohyun Jung shares her debilitating long COVID experience.
17 min
Car Stolen. Device Tracking. Now What?
San Franciscans are increasingly using tracking devices to locate their stolen bikes, computers and cars. But what happens when police can't assist? Chronicle reporter Megan Cassidy joins host Demian Bulwa to discuss how this technology often clashes with the realities of big-city policing.
15 min
Why San Francisco Evicts Its Most Vulnerable Re...
The Breed administration offered them homes. Then it spent millions to kick them out.
28 min
Why Did Gov. Newsom Veto a Drug Bill That Would...
Critics say Gov. Gavin Newsom’s national political ambitions moved him to veto legislation that would have allowed San Francisco, Oakland and Los Angeles to open supervised injection sites as a way to curb California’s overdose crisis. But as City Hall reporter Mallory Moench and host Joe Garofoli explain, the politics are more complicated than that.
15 min
How Conservatives Are Fighting the Culture Wars...
Suburban and rural school boards are among the few places Republicans can win elections and change policies in this deep-blue state. Reporter Ryan Kost talks to host Demian Bulwa about their efforts to push issues that energize conservative voters.
15 min
California High-Speed Rail's 'Hot Girl Summer'
The California high-speed rail line took a major leap forward when rail authorities approved a bullet train link that would zoom passengers from the Central Valley into downtown San Francisco.
13 min
Fixing Our City: Can San Francisco Learn From H...
Texas' largest city is getting national attention for its approach to homelessness. In this episode of The Chronicle's Fixing Our City podcast, host Laura Wenus explores what Houston's doing, and discovers that San Francisco is already trying to do many of the same things.
34 min
The Science Behind Bay Area Weather
Warming temperatures in the Bay Area have made for good small talk. The Chronicle's new weather team is here to level up those conversations. Weather science editor Heather Hagemann and the newsroom's first meteorologist, Gerry Diaz, join host Cecilia Lei.
19 min
San Francisco Students: Back to School and Back...
Summer's over for SFUSD students, who are returning to the classroom this week. After dealing with the pandemic and various school board controversies in recent years, what do students face? Education reporter Jill Tucker joins host Cecilia Lei.
18 min
S.F. D.A. Brooke Jenkins Calls Payment Controve...
Co-host and Chronicle director of news Demian Bulwa and crime reporter Megan Cassidy join host Cecilia Lei to discuss the San Francisco district attorney's defense of her six-figure consultancy work for a nonprofit linked to the Recall Chesa Boudin campaign.
21 min
Megafloods: California’s Next Climate Disaster?
California is in its third year of a historic drought but climate change also brings the risk of more severe storms that could cause catastrophic flooding.
19 min
Oakland's $50M Promise: “Students, Your City Lo...
Mayor Libby Schaaf's $50 million initiative will give secondary education scholarships to Oakland's low-income students and college savings accounts to every baby born to a low-income family. Mayor Schaaf joins host Cecilia Lei to talk about how the ambitious initiative will end generational poverty, and what it means for her legacy as mayor.
18 min
Secrets of Donald Trump’s Most Loyal Followers
Former longterm Republican strategist Tim Miller, a Never Trumper and author of the bestselling “Why We Did It: A Travelogue From the Republican Road to Hell," talks to Joe Garofoli about the state of the Republican Party, whether anyone can beat Trump, and his own journey out of the GOP.
23 min
How Brooke Jenkins Will Run the D.A.'s Office —...
In an interview recorded the day before the revelation she received more than $100,000 from a nonprofit tied to a backer of the Chesa Boudin recall, San Francisco’s new district attorney talks to host Cecilia Lei about her policy positions, and why she fired 15 staff members.
28 min
Home Restaurants Blossom, But Some Are Choking ...
Chefs serving food out of their homes isn't new in some communities, but pandemic lockdowns prompted a surge in interest. Reporters Elgin Nelson and Cesar Hernandez talk to Demian Bulwa about the sometimes burdensome licensing requirements that have followed.
15 min
What's Missing in the S.F. School Board Ann Hsu...
The San Francisco school board formally admonished a board for comments blaming Black and brown families for racial gaps in academic achievement. The debate over whether she should resign has been heated.
16 min