Author: Jordan Frias

  • Shelter guests will begin to receive COVID-19 vaccines in late December, early January

    Vaccines against COVID-19 produced by Cambridge-based Moderna should start going to shelter guests at Pine Street Inn as early as next week or the first week of January. Pine Street Inn President Lyndia Downie said Massachusetts is one of the few states that is prioritizing shelters for the unhoused in its rollout of a vaccine. […]

  • Progressives in Congress try to protect homeless, prevent more homelessness

    Editor’s Note: For the first time in its nearly 30 year history, Spare Change News if off the streets. While we want our vendors to earn a living, we don’t want them to risk their health to do so. In an effort to provide them with some kind of income while the pandemic rages, we’ve […]

  • Former hospital building reopens as homeless shelter sees first case of COVID-19

    Pine Street Inn, New England’s largest homeless shelter, has reported its first case of coronavirus among its guests. The person who contracted COVID-19, the illness caused by coronavirus, stayed at a number Boston-area shelters, including Pine Street Inn, according to a statement issued by the shelter on March 26. The individual who tested positive is […]

  • Councilor asks Boston to name racism ‘a public health crisis’

    Councilor asks Boston to name racism ‘a public health crisis’

    Ricardo Arroyo addresses the Boston City Council. Photo by Jordan Frias Concerned about racism and inequity in Boston, freshman city councilor Ricardo Arroyo is calling for an independent office to assess how city officials can play a role in reducing racism and its impacts on communities of color.Arroyo, the chairman of the council’s Committee on […]

  • ‘Still much work to be done’ on homelessness in Massachusetts

    Officials at the New England Regional Office of the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) say there’s “still much work to be done” despite an 8 percent decrease in homelessness in Massachusetts from 2018 to 2019. The numbers are based on an annual report that was submitted to Congress earlier this year. The […]

  • Advocates, Legislators Rally for Rent Control to Protect tenants

    Advocates, Legislators Rally for Rent Control to Protect tenants

    Dozens gathered outside the Massachusetts State House on Tuesday, Oct. 29 at a rally in support of legislation that would reinstate rent control in Massachusetts.  The state eliminated rent control after Massachusetts residents voted to do so in 1994 by a very slim margin, with 49 percent in favor of keeping it, and 51 percent […]

  • 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 […]

  • Cop accused of rape released on personal recognizance

    A former Lowell police officer is expected back in court at the end of August for allegedly raping a homeless teenager back in 2016. Kevin Garneau, 49, of Pelham, New Hampshire is facing two counts of rape in connection with an alleged series of sexual assaults of a homeless female while on duty, according to […]

  • Boston Housing Authority Administrator Signs Off, Reflects on 40-Year Career with the Agency

    William McGonagle may remember growing up in a very different Boston at a time where he was surrounded by a more homogenous group of people in a public housing development over in South Boston. McGonagle, an Irish-American man, was raised with other Irish Catholics in the Mary Ellen McCormack – a development that he would […]

  • Bill Would Expand Those Eligible for SNAP

    A bill filed mid July would make more college students eligible for food assistance on campuses across the country. The College Student Hunger Act of 2019, filed by Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Representative Al Lawson of Florida, would make all Pell Grant eligible students also eligible for SNAP benefits. The purpose of the […]