Every vote counts is not just a saying to encourage people to get out and vote -- it's a reality evidenced by Julia Mejia's one-vote victory in the recount for the Boston City Council's fourth at-large seat. Mejia's victory actually shrank from her Nov. 5th victory in which she beat St. Guillen by a mere five votes, 22,477 to 22,472, according to the city's website. After that tight margin, St.
English High School will be the site for an at-large Boston City Council candidates public forum on Oct. 28. Seven out of the eight candidates are confirmed that they will attend as of Oct. 25. The lone candidate not confirmed is incumbent At-Large City Councilor Althea Garrison.
Jamaica Plain's City Councilor Matt O'Malley has called for a hearing to determine the feasibility of a textile recycling program in Boston. “Curbside textile recycling is another opportunity of sound environmental policy that can generate revenue for the city of Boston. The city of Boston can reduce our waste stream, greenhouse gas emissions and receive payment for the value of the material,” said O'Malley to Jamaica Plain News. Ever the environmental politician of Boston, O'Malley points out that 40 Massachusetts municipalities, including Brookline, Somerville and Natick have implemented curbside textile recycling. Those programs have diverted more than 2.2 million pounds from their waste stream.
Two Boston City Councilors have proposed that the city provide free menstrual products in Boston Public Schools, Boston Public Libraries, BCYF Community Centers, and in city buildings. An estimated 100 million high school students missed school because of a lack of menstrual products, according to an UNESCO report. In Boston, 78 percent of students come from low-income households and an estimated 16.5 percent of Boston's population lives in poverty. But councilors District 1 City Councilor Lydia Edwards and Jamaica Plain's City Councilor Matt O'Malley are looking to make sure more people have access to menstrual products. Having access to menstrual products will help people not miss school, not miss work, and avoid any other health, social or professional challenges that result from a lack of availability.
UPDATE: The location of the forum has changed. JP Progressives is hosting its second at-large City Councilor candidates forum on June 3. JP Progressives is hosting its second forum with Mijente, and Right to the City Vote at Doyle's Cafe at 6:30 pm. The forum was going to be hosted at Forest Hills Covenant Church, but JP Progressives changed the forum location because the church is a member of the Evangelical Covenant Church denomination, which does not support marriage equality. "This particular congregation is in the process of defining its own position on these issues, but until the church is unequivocally affirming of LGBTQ+ rights, we will not be able to hold events at this location," said an email from JP Progressives.