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Sandra Larson

Stories by Sandra

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Opening soon: Dudley Square’s Bolling Building features wealth of architectural details

When the long-dormant former Ferdinand’s furniture store reawakens as the Bruce C. Bolling Municipal Building next month, Dudley Square will have a gleaming new centerpiece. Set in motion in 2011 by former Mayor Thomas Menino, the redevelopment promises to grace Boston’s geographic center with a sophisticated exterior that knits together historic and contemporary architecture, an airy modern interior and a sixth-floor community space and roof deck with sweeping city views available to Boston School Department employees, visitors and the public.

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Program puts BPS students on path to Boston teaching jobs

Thirty-six Boston high school students are starting on a seven-year path through high school and college and into teaching careers, thanks to a new Boston Public Schools program aimed at developing a more diverse next generation of teachers.

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Hundreds attend local Brother’s Keeper summit

Mayor Martin Walsh welcomed some 500 community members to a My Brother’s Keeper summit in Roxbury last Saturday. A diverse group of community stakeholders that included local residents, clergy, educators, police and business and nonprofit leaders — as well as a good number of teens — gathered at the James P. Timilty Middle School to help shape the local MBK initiative that aims to improve the opportunities and outcomes for Boston’s boys and men of color.

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Residents reject addiction programs for former Radius Specialty Hospital on Townsend St.

Roxbury residents were vociferous in their opposition to the city’s proposal to site addiction recovery services displaced from Long Island at the former Radius Specialty Hospital on Townsend Street.

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Report shows Latinos underrepresented in local government leadership

A report released this week, “The Silent Crisis: Including Latinos and Why It Matters,” shows that while Latinos make up 17.5 percent of Boston’s population, they hold only 7.5 percent of cabinet, senior staff or chief positions and only 7.1 percent of board and commission seats in city government.

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Governor Patrick signs order on environmental justice

Governor Deval Patrick has signed an Executive Order on Environmental Justice that enhances environmental protections and benefits for communities of color and low-income or limited-English-proficiency communities, groups that bear a disproportionate burden of environmental pollution and toxins.

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Stories from Roxbury’s elders evoke bygone era

Roxbury seniors shared their stories as part of the Roxbury Elder Storytelling Project.

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Mayor vetoes proposed commission on black and Latino boys and men

City Council members reacted indignantly last week to Mayor Martin Walsh’s veto of a proposed new Commission on the Status of Black Men and Boys in Boston that District 7 Councilor Tito Jackson had been championing for the past 10 months.

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Dismay, call to action after ‘sobering’ school report details racial disparities

Following last week’s release of a Boston Public Schools report revealing deep disparities in outcomes for black and Latino males in the Boston schools, community members raised questions and voiced a mixture of emotions and thoughts from dismay and anger to suggestions and passionate hope for change.

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Forum examines challenges women and girls face in jobs, education

Nonprofit leaders discussed the challenges unique to women in girls during a forum presented by Simmons College and the Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts.

Report details disparate educational outcomes for blacks, Latinos in Boston schools

The school department released a report this week outlining the challenges black and Latino students face in the city’s education system

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Elder financial abuse a growing problem as population ages

As the ranks of older adults are expected to swell nationwide in the coming decades as the large Baby Boomer generation reaches their 60s and 70s, more and more elders are at risk of being swindled by unscrupulous caregivers and scam artists.

Pay-for-success plan brings Roca to Roxbury

An innovative gang-intervention program opened an office in Roxbury last week.

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Gubernatorial candidates address Latino audience at forum

A gubernatorial candidate forum hosted by Northeastern University and El Mundo Media last week elicited lively exchanges on immigration reform, increasing access to education and creating a Latino-inclusive administration.

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City hosts summit on lead paint danger

With ninety percent of housing units in Boston were built before lead paint was banned, lead is a pervasive danger in the city, yet many landlords and renters do not fully understand the laws around lead paint removal.

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Walsh announces financial empowerment initiative

Mayor Martin Walsh has announced the opening of the Roxbury Center for Financial Empowerment in Dudley Square as part of a new initiative to address income inequality and poverty in Boston.

Coalition calls for wage guarantees for construction on Roxbury projects

A coalition of labor activists secured an agreement from the Roxbury Strategic Master Plan Oversight Committee to push for higher minority participation and higher wages on any new construction on public land in Roxbury.

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City councilors hear testimony on City Realty

Owners of City Realty defended their firm against allegations of doubling rents and forcing out tenants in properties they have acquired during a City Council hearing Monday.

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Hub linkage fees fund $1 million in job training grants

The City of Boston’s Jobs and Community Services (JCS) Office recently awarded over $1 million to 19 community-based employment and workforce development programs.

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Walsh administration calls for 50,000 new units of housing in Boston

The Walsh administration unveiled a sweeping new plan to meet Boston’s growing housing needs.

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Anti-racism bloggers share insights in Ford Hall Forum discussion

Bloggers Spectra Asala, of Spectra Speaks (spectraspeaks.com), Jay Smooth of Ill Doctrine (illdoctrine.com) and Andrew Ti of Yo, Is this Racist?, spoke about anti-racism blogging during a panel discussion hosted by the Ford Hall Forum.

Councilor Tito Jackson to hold hearing on corporate landlords

City Realty has caught the attention of housing activists and the City Council, purchasing dozens of apartments and raising rents.

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Forum pushes gubernatorial candidates on human service issues

The Providers’ Council, a statewide organization of human service providers, held a forum on human services with gubernatorial candidates.

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Roxbury workers stunned by hospital closure

Radius Specialty Hospital is closing its Townsend Street facility, the former Jewish Memorial Hospital.

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Marvin Gilmore celebrates 90th birthday with 200 friends, family members, supporters

World War II veteran and developer Marvin Gilmore celebrated his 90th birthday at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Boston.

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Former Massachusetts man raises funds to help ailing Mississippi blues musicians

Edgar Smith, who spent much of his career working in Boston, created a foundation to provide financial assistance to aging blues musicians.

Minority- and woman-owned firms get boost from pilot program

A pilot project of the Massachusetts Association of Community Development Corporations and the Massachusetts Minority Contractors Association has brought nearly $39 million in economic opportunity to minority-owned and women-owned business enterprises in its first year.

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Circle the City street fair celebrates vitality of communities along Blue Hill Ave.

In its second year, Circle the City will host a street fair on a mile-long stretch of Blue Hill Avenue September 28.

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Bornstein & Pearl Food Production Center expected to create 150 jobs

The Bornstein & Pearl Food Production Center, part of a $100 million redevelopment on Quincy Street, serves as an incubator for new food businesses and is expected to create 150.

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New website for Roxbury Strategic Master Plan Oversight Committee

The Roxbury Strategic Master Plan Oversight Committee has launched a new website providing information on development projects for Roxbury residents.

Court rules McDonald’s responsible for wage theft, worker’s rights violations in franchises

McDonald’s employees in Boston rallied last week after a judge found that McDonald’s is responsible for setting wages and employee policies for its franchises.

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Mayor, local activists break ground on new Roxbury farm plot under city’s new commercial farm zoning

A new zoning law allows for commercial farming in Boston. City officials, local businesses and activists turn out to Harold Street plot to break ground on new farm site.

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Family, friendship rule the day at Roxbury homecoming

Thousands of people with Roxbury neighborhood ties gathered in Franklin Park for the annual Roxbury Pride Day/Juneteenth Celebration.

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Mayor Martin Walsh addresses resident questions in Roxbury forum

Mayor Marty Walsh fielded many questions Monday at a Roxbury town hall meeting. Attendees wishing to ask questions submitted their names at the start; if their names were drawn, they were called to the microphone during the hour-long Q&A session.

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Roxbury forum examines 1960s anti-highway fight

A recent Roxbury Community College forum brought together a newly minted Yale doctor in American studies and two elder statesmen of local activism to discuss the victorious 1960s grassroots action to block an eight-lane highway that would have torn through Roxbury, Jamaica Plain, the South End and Cambridge.

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Roxbury neighbors spar over affordable housing

In many ways, the Bartlett Place development plans capture the many different aspirations of its Roxbury neighbors, with affordable and market-rate apartments and townhouses, retail shops and a public space for art and commerce.

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Dudley Square entrepreneurs seek retail opportunities in Ferdinand building

The Dudley Municipal Center rising on the long-neglected Ferdinand site is already having a dramatic effect on the Dudley Square skyline. When the building opens in 2015 as the new Boston Public Schools headquarters, a new streetscape will also emerge, as retail and restaurant tenants set up shop in 18,500 square feet of first-floor retail space.

Mass fair housing groups receive $1.6 million from HUD

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has awarded $1.6 million in grants to four Massachusetts groups working to reduce housing discrimination. The grants are part of $38.3 million awarded nationwide through HUD’s Fair Housing Initiatives Program.

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BUILD promotes teen entrepreneurship

Anthony Nin of Roslindale and Angel Soto of Dorchester have good reason to feel confident as they reflect on the first year of their startup business, called ReVamp’D, which won the BUILD Youth Business Plan Competition.

‘Inner City 100’ honors list of fastest-growing urban companies

Ten Massachusetts firms were named to the list

Ten Massachusetts firms, headquartered in Boston, Lawrence, Lowell and Worcester, were named to the 2013 “Inner City 100” list unveiled recently by the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC). The list recognizes the fastest-growing companies located in urban cores across the United States.

Workshop on US fair housing act stresses equal access for all

he federal Fair Housing Act turned 45 last month, but vigilance, enforcement and education are still needed to ensure full housing access to all.

The federal Fair Housing Act turned 45 last month, but vigilance, enforcement and education are still needed to ensure full housing access to all. This was the message at “Fair Housing Wrongs and Rights,” a workshop presented April 30 by the Boston Fair Housing Commission (BFHC) and the Boston NAACP Housing Committee as part of the agencies’ observation of Fair Housing Month. About 35 landlords, housing agency representatives and tenants attended the event, held at the Boston NAACP office in Roxbury.

Workshop on US fair housing act stresses equal access for all

Sandra Larson The federal Fair Housing Act turned 45...

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Melnea Cass widening project raises resident questions, concerns

t a public meeting hosted by the Boston Transportation Department (BTD) last week, Roxbury residents, activists and local elected officials raised sharp questions about a plan to widen Melnea Cass Boulevard in order to add new center median bus lanes and stations.

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Melnea Cass widening project raises resident questions, concerns

Attendees listen during a question-and-answer session at a March 6 meeting on the Melnea Cass Boulevard...

Restaurant, shops anticipated for first floor of Ferdinand site

Restaurant, shops anticipated for first floor of Ferdinand site

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Protesters demand more local jobs at Ferdinand

Protesters march on Washington Street near the Ferdinand construction site to demand more hiring of...

Mass. Senate passes jobs access bill

The Massachusetts State Senate has passed Senate Bill 2386, a modified version of a bill...

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Cleaning up Blue Hill Ave., block by block

Darryl Smith (L) and the Blue Hill Avenue Neighborhood Response Team in front of Blue Hill...

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Passions flare at Dudley Vision meeting

BPS spokesperson says “no” to Skylab Carleton Jones, executive director of capital and...

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Ferdinand redevelopment design nearing completion

A rendering of the Warren Street corner of the new municipal building that will occupy the...

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