Numerous Boston elected officials including Suffolk County's District Attorney and Sheriff teamed up together for a Mass.gov encouraging residents to receive the Coronavirus vaccine. Suffolk County Sheriff Steven Tompkins, District Attorney Rachael Rollins, At-Large Boston City Councilor Michelle Wu, Boston City Council President Kim Janey, and State Rep. Nika Elugardo (D-15th Suffolk), are among numerous elected official of color encouraging Black, Latinx, and people older than 65 years old. Tompkins office produced the video. "When it's my turn, I will do it," says State Rep. Russell Holmes (D-6th Suffolk). "As soon as I can, I will do it," says Wu.
State Rep. Nika Elugardo, the Boston Housing Authority (BHA), and the Main Street organization teamed up at the end of the year to launch a youth jobs program for BHA residents and other low-income youths
Elugardo (D-15th Suffolk) secured a $500,000 earmark for the program during the state's supplemental June budget. “Historically we’ve found the key to prosperity and public safety at the community level is youth employment,” said Elugardo via press release. “Youth with good jobs bring leadership and vibrancy to their communities." The following businesses and organizations provided youths jobs: Three Squares Main Streets; Home Basix; La Patrona Mexican Grill; Chocolate Hair; Married to the Mop; Break Bread Transportation; Miami Restaurant; Mildred Hailey Youth Center; Tails; City Feed & Supply;
The First Baptist Church of Jamaica Plain; 4 Corners Yoga & Wellness; and
JP Centre/South Main Streets. "We’re working with people in the community to make sure the youth who often fall through the cracks are the first in line for these jobs," said Elugardo.
Saying that Boston needs to be a leader in battling racism, Mayor Marty Walsh declared racism a public health crisis. He also announced that 20% or $12 million of the Boston Police Department's overtime budget will be reallocated as investments in equity and inclusion in the city. "In Boston, we embrace the opportunity this moment and this movement offers us," said Walsh on Friday. "We stand with our Black community and communities of color to lead the change toward a more just and equitable society. With these actions, we will increase equity in public safety and public health, and launch a conversation that can produce lasting, systemic change to eliminate all the ways that racism and inequality harm our residents."
Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley, state Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz, and state Rep. Nika Elugardo were among elected officials of color to speak at a press conference on Tuesday outside of the State House, and released a 10-point plan to combat systemic racism. Pressley joined the Massachusetts Black and Latino Legislative Caucus and other elected officials of color from across the state to "speak directly to the pain and injustice facing our communities and to advocate for police accountability and reform." You can view the entire press conference here. Elugardo said that she worked closely with African American Coalition Committee (AACC), a group of "inside the wall" advocates incarcerated at MCI Norfolk who, before Elugardo was elected, helped draft the original bill to establish the Commission on Structural Racism referenced in priority #7. (Graphics from Boston At-Large City Councilor Julia Mejia)
Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley, state Rep. Nika Elugardo, and Congressional candidate Robbie Goldstein, will talk about the state and federal response to the COVID-19 pandemic on Wednesday. The event is being hosted by JP Progressives, and the Mass Public Health Association, with the following special guests:
Nancy Kreiger from the Harvard School of Public Health will share findings from her research on the disparate impact of the virus
Monique Ching from the Mass Budget and Policy Center will speak about the state budget crisis
Milt Kotelchuck from Mass General Hospital will provide relevant historical context
Goldstein, who is a Democratic challenger to Congressman Stephen Lynch, 8th-MA
"Massachusetts has more than 86,000 cases and nearly 6,000 deaths, but who are the individuals and communities that have been most impacted? What is the current and future outlook for our community and economic health? What are policymakers at the state and federal levels doing, and not doing, to respond to the crisis?" said a JP Progressives email newsletter.