Author: Abby DeRigo

  • Pandemic redefines ‘essential’ as workers brave coronavirus

    Pandemic redefines ‘essential’ as workers brave coronavirus

    Mario and Dave behind the counter of Downtown Wine and Spirits in Somerville. As the coronavirus spreads its respiratory distress all over the world, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has issued an advisory asking that all “non-essential” workers remain home from work in order to stymie the spread of the virus. The types of workers deemed […]

  • As coronavirus spreads, homeless people are vulnerable

    Massachusetts and the United States overall are ill-equipped to deal with a pandemic, and homeless people stand to bear the brunt of this lack of preparedness. Many homeless people have pre-existing health conditions, and public health officials in Massachusetts have not set up places for homeless people to wash their hands, or to isolate themselves […]

  • Won’t be Silent Anymore: Poor People’s Campaign Comes to Massachusetts

    Over 300 people gathered in Greenfield, Massachusetts last week for a rally with The Poor People’s Campaign: A Call for Moral Revival.” While in the church that held the rally, it was easy to forget that we’re living in a country with a cruel racist as president, where people sleep on the streets, as billionaires […]

  • Hearing on rent control draws supportive tenants and activists

    Hearing on rent control draws supportive tenants and activists

    The Joint Committee on Housing held a hearing on Tuesday, Jan. 14, on a bill before the Massachusetts Legislature that would lift the ban on rent control in Massachusetts, allowing cities and towns to decide if it’s best for their respective communities.  The bill is being sponsored by Rep. Michael Connolly (D-Middlesex) and Nika Elugardo […]

  • Boston pledges $500 million over five years for housing

    Mayor Marty Walsh’s administration has announced a five year $500 million investment in affordable housing, but a vital revenue stream needed to fund the investment isn’t a sure thing.  The administration has proposed a transfer tax of up to two percent, which according to Chief Financial Officer Emme Handy would generate “something like in excess […]

  • ‘Clean sweep’ becomes policy

    The Walsh administration has announced an initiative aimed at clearing homeless people from the Melnea Cass/Massachusetts Avenue neighborhood, in a follow up to last summer’s action against Boston’s homeless, known as “Operation Clean Sweep,” with its Melnea Cass/Mass Ave. 2.0 plan.  “While no neighborhood or group of people has escaped this crisis, the areas of […]

  • Police action sends homeless people running

    Police action sends homeless people running

    The assault of a corrections officer in the South End has led to what Boston Police are calling “Operation Clean Sweep,” and what activists are characterizing as a bare-knuckled attack on the entirety of Boston’s Homeless population.  Fifty-one-year-old Sean Stuart has been arrested in connection with an assault on Aug. 1, caught on video, that […]

  • Panel discusses Boston’s efforts to house the chronically homeless

    Before he had a home, Eric Lepovetsky would spend his nights in his “nylon condo” — that is, a tent in a wooded area of a park — staying out of sight from strangers and drinking himself to sleep. “Although I have fears that are real — attacks by humans, animals bugs — my greatest […]

  • Elizabeth Warren kicks off campaign in Lawrence

    Elizabeth Warren kicks off campaign in Lawrence

    Elizabeth Warren made her presidential campaign official in Lawrence, at a Saturday morning kick-off event that alluded to the mill city’s history of labor strikes and long lineage of immigrant communities. The Massachusetts senator’s speech was full of talking points on issues ranging from corruption in Washington, D.C. to the racial wealth gap. But it […]

  • A Christmas dinner at the YMCA, as homelessness rises in Mass.

    A Christmas dinner at the YMCA, as homelessness rises in Mass.

    The staff of the Boston Business Journal helped serve food. Photo by author. It’s Christmas time at the Huntington Avenue YMCA, which hosted its annual dinner on Thursday night for its housing program guests. Twelve round tables were spread throughout the dining room, sitting at them were parents with small kids and some older folks—a […]