News

Japanese American incarceration and present-day migrant camps: Perspectives of 3 survivors

The haunting images of children caged in chicken wire, warehoused in government facilities surrounded by armed guards are chilling reminders of the U.S. government’s treatment of Japanese Americans during World War II. Three survivors reflect on the present in the context of a common past. ‘We’re repeating history’ Joni Kimoto never shared much with her daughters

Boston’s Homeless Women Struggle to Navigate Healthcare System

Last year, the City of Boston said the homeless population had gone down three percent. Despite the decline, homelessness in the city remains at just over six thousand—and most of them eventually will need medical care. Women on the street need specialized medical care. Boston provides an array of medical assistance to help them. Samantha

Request for ‘Clean Sweep’ Records drags on

The city of Boston is unlawfully dragging its feet in providing records related to the so-called Operation Clean Sweep—a series of police raids beginning in August that targeted homeless people and drug users who congregate in a section of Boston’s South End known colloquially as “Methadone Mile” for its cluster of addiction-treatment services. The raids

Brazil’s pigs help people produce clean energy

Pigs, already the main source of income in this small municipality in south-western Brazil, now have even more value as a source of electricity. The mini-thermal power plant of Entre Rios do Oeste, inaugurated on 24 July, uses the biogas provided by 18 farms, in a pioneering technical-commercial agreement in Brazil involving pig farmers, the

Hospitals give $3 million to Boston homeless organizations

Three major Boston hospitals are working together to tackle housing insecurity over the next three years. Boston Medical Center, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Boston Children’s Hospital will provide $3 million in funds over the next three years to organizations that are aiding those struggling to afford rent or are facing eviction. All three hospitals

Boston to make case for new Long Island bridge to Quincy

The City of Boston is hoping to convey that rebuilding a bridge to Long Island is the best option for accessing and reopening a recovery campus for addicts during a meeting on Tuesday, May 7,  in Quincy. The public meeting, being held at the Kennedy Center facility for the Quincy Council on Aging at 7

How Trump incites violence: Understanding stochastic terrorism

Three years ago, on 9 August 2016, Rolling Stone magazine published an article by Drexel University Law Professor David Cohen on stochastic terrorism and the messaging coming from the Trump campaign. At the time, stochastic terrorism was a relatively obscure academic term, but his column helped propel it into today’s lexicon, and recent events have prompted discussion

Horace Seldon: Fighting Injustice, Celebrating Civil Disobedience

Horace Seldon was happily lying on his back, waving his hands and feet in the air the first time Shay Stewart-Bouley saw him. Shay was just starting out as Executive Director of Community Change, Inc., the anti-racism non-profit Horace founded in 1968, and she was at the organization’s forty-fifth anniversary party. It also happened to

Arts & Culture

Running on Empty Part 2: Doctor Shopping and Crowbar Dodging

The pharmacist had grey hair and his glasses rested down on a bump in the middle of his nose.  The woman working the counter came over and I handed her the scripts. She asked me for my address and wrote it on the scripts.  I hated when they did that if they didn’t cash them

Book Review: ‘Prey For Us’

I was introduced to Geoffrey Neil’s wonderful writing because his first book, Dire Means, was about homelessness in Santa Monica, California where some extremely devious people tried to end homelessness through evil means. In that book, I met a woman named Morana Mahker, who was very skilled at both eliminating people and tracking their movements

Champion of the Underdog: An Interview With Dolly Parton

“As a writer, I have to leave my heart open,” Dolly Parton begins. “That’s why I have always said I never could harden my heart, even against hurt or anything. Because as a writer, if you harden your heart, you’re not going to feel all that emotion you need to feel, and you won’t be

‘Friends’ Star Inspired to Action by Friend’s Homelessness

David Schwimmer, former star of “Friends,” turned his artistic talent to telling stories that highlight the struggle of homeless people after discovering that his friend had been living on Skid Row, hiding his homelessness even from those who knew him best. Photo Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons “I had a friend who was homeless for two

‘It changed my life’: Ordinary people power Game of Thrones

‘THEY KNOW ME AS THE ANIMAL MAN OF NORTHERN IRELAND’ Kenny Gracey – medieval livestock owner It’s not just on-screen talent that has felt the Game of Thrones effect – its success has pumped millions into Northern Ireland’s economy. Besides tourists flocking to see the iconic locations, the show had more than 6,000 employees, putting local talent

Columns

Addiction is a Disease

In recent weeks I have grown tired and sometimes angry at the way people who abuse drugs have been talked about, from the goings on down on methadone mile, to the lynch mobs posing as neighborhood meetings, to the outrageous videos and posts on Facebook from Bostonians, to politicians both in and running for office. 

Bizarre Boston: Raising Hell at Harvard

When I think about college students raising hell, I picture kegs of beer, red plastic Solo cups and loud music. Oh, and maybe a beer funnel or two. In my mind, the phrase “raising hell” is just a metaphor for having a wild time. However, maybe it’s not always just a metaphor. For some Harvard

Running on Empty Part 2: Doctor Shopping and Crowbar Dodging

The pharmacist had grey hair and his glasses rested down on a bump in the middle of his nose.  The woman working the counter came over and I handed her the scripts. She asked me for my address and wrote it on the scripts.  I hated when they did that if they didn’t cash them

LAST WORD: Christina Sukghian Houle

About a month ago, an artist called Christina Sukhgian Houle dropped into the Spare Change News’ headquarters to meet with some of the vendors. Christina has joined forces with the newspaper’s co-founder, James Shearer, with the goal of making a documentary on homelessness in the Boston area. Christina is a relatively recent transplant to Greater

Addiction is a Disease

In recent weeks I have grown tired and sometimes angry at the way people who abuse drugs have been talked about, from the goings on down on methadone mile, to the lynch mobs posing as neighborhood meetings, to the outrageous videos and posts on Facebook from Bostonians, to politicians both in and running for office. 

‘I Always Came Back’: A Story of Survival

“Hey, baby!” Linda Burston, with an illuminating smile and wide eyes, greets every woman who comes through the doors of Women’s Lunch Place. They always know when Linda is in the room; even among the clink clank of dishes being piled high, the scraping of metal fork against ceramic plate, the hum of conversation among dozens of

The Avoidable Crisis

Stanley Forman: 40 Years After the Soiling of Old Glory

The photo was chilling. Before a crowd of onlookers, a white man appears to be attempting to stab a black man with the tip of a flagpole. “It really showed racism,” said photographer Stanley Forman 40 years after he took the Pulitzer Prize-winning snapshot of an anti-busing protest that had turned violent. “It was whites

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