ACE Blog

A movement towards equity

March 28, 2008

Just two weeks ago, 60 Massachusetts advocates, activists, academics and policymakers convened in New Orleans to join a national conversation about social and economic equity with 1,800 colleagues. Equity 08: The Third National Summit on Equitable Development, Social Justice and Smart Growth was an opportunity to engage in strategy workshops, panelist presentations and share successes in a city where inequitable policy and its tragic effects has underlined the urgency of such conferences.

Participants viewed an award-winning new documentary film about Katrina produced by Danny Glover who also spoke afterwards. Before the diverse crowd of attendees, Angela Glover Blackwell, the CEO of Policylink, declared the crystallization of an Equity Movement. Read more...

But what about the buses?

March 26, 2008

Yesterday, the Boston Globe reported on the MBTA's $3.75 billion capital investment program to be implemented over the next five years. Planned improvements consist mainly of maintaining the current system as opposed to expansion, from inspecting tunnels and bridges to making current subway stations more accessible.

We are concerned with the amount of the funds designated for the bus system. Bus riders make up 30 percent of the T's ridership, but are only being given 12 percent of the overall budget. (The Globe sites bus funding at 15 percent, but that figure lumps in other transit projects like The RIDE.) Read more...

Radical Organizing Conference this Saturday!

March 25, 2008

The Radical Organizing Conference (ROC) brings together change makers to build relationships, common understanding and united strategies to make radical social change for our communities. Join us at the fourth ROC for exciting workshops, new ideas and activist trainings.

Saturday, March 29
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
at SEIU 1199, 150 Mt. Vernon Street in Dorchester

by the JFK/UMass stop on the Red Line

Keynote speaker: Boston City Councilor Chuck Turner.

ACE member writes about CORI reform

March 20, 2008

Long-time ACE member Donna Dear recently wrote an essay for The Change Agent focusing on the need to reform the State’s Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI).

“CORI files provide lists of convictions and arrests (event if the arrest did not result in a conviction). Even misdemeanors stay on your record indefinitely. CORI laws keep thousands of people from obtaining employment, housing, loans, insurance, and college education...It is unjust for people to go to jail, serve their time, and come back into society with no possibility of getting a job.” Read more...

Art Against the Biolab

March 18, 2008

For the past six years, Safety Net and the Stop the Biolab Coalition have been fighting a BSL-4 from being built in the South End and Roxbury by Boston University. Thanks to the time, energy and passion of volunteers, resistance to the Bioterrorism Lab saw great successes in 2007. Unfortunately, Safety Net does not have the wealth and resources that BU does. Support and funds are needed to keep the fight strong at such an important time!

Artists: Interested in submitting visual artwork, crafts, sculpture, music recordings or other work to be exhibited? There are several options: Read more...

Bio-terrorism lab on YouTube

March 17, 2008

Residents of Boston have lived with some of the world’s most renowned research facilities for years. But never have they felt as threatened as they do with Boston University’s new bio-terrorism lab, classified as Level 4 (the most hazardous level), which will be researching some of the most dangerous pathogens in the world, including Ebola, anthrax and plague. Read more...

Stuart's bus report goes into effect

March 14, 2008

Today, T Riders Union (TRU) staff and members had the opportunity to tour the MBTA Bus Operations headquarters and meet with Director of Bus and Subway Operations Jim Folk. In response to the release of TRU Member Stuart Spina’s report, T officials wanted a chance to review concerns and recommendations for bus service improvements.

Some recommendations in Stuart’s report are being carried out, including system-wide incorporation of GPS tracking used to monitor bus bunching on selected routes. This will allow the T to examine buses by route to make adjustments in scheduling and operations, a process that should be well under way by the end of the year. Read more...

Youth speak out against violence on bus route #23

March 10, 2008

In Tuesday’s Boston Globe the front page article featured Codman Square Neighborhood Development Corporation’s STARS Youth raising the issue of violence on bus #23.

”The teenagers say the chances for violence seem greater when the bus is packed, especially in the late afternoon, when students are coming home from school and adults are getting out of work.... Along with their worries about violence, [youth rider Tiara] Amarante and her friends want to report other problems they say they have noticed: lack of room for baby carriages; drivers who fail to pull up to the curb during stops; and a slow schedule that they believe does not keep up with heavy ridership.” Read more...