Doreen Wade Celebrates Democracy

People looking at raised flags

Celebrating Democracy

We hope to live with dignity and respect for our rights, even if we live in public and subsidized housing. However, we often feel like prisoners and we despair for relief.

Enslaved people and their descendants have had a more difficult challenge to seek their rightful place as free persons living with dignity and respect for their rights!

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Bullying & Democracy At Apple Village

 

Some tenants of Apple Village allege they are the targets of harassment, abuse, bullying, and deliberate actions to create stress. Members of each of the tenant associations accuse the other of bullying. Some blame the manager. The problems are pervasive. The situation may qualify as hostile environment harassment. Apple Village in Beverly has two HUD-subsidized apartment buildings for elderly and disabled.


 

Don’t Harm the Vulnerable

The June, 5 2023 article in the Globe by John Hilliard, “State health rapid response team deployed to Chelsea veterans’ home after new COVID-19 outbreak,” reports that 25 persons were infected by COVID, probably at a party. “Dr. Shira Doron …  [was] not surprised to hear of a cluster of COVID-19 cases occurring in a place like a veterans’ home, where people are in close proximity.” Since we know that COVID can be spread by aerosols—tiny, invisible droplets—we are surprised that residents and staff were not better protected. We know how to use layers of protection including gathering outside and avoiding indoor gatherings; ventilation; and N95 masks to reduce the risk of transmission.

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Editorial: Safety Earns Trust

Van displays banner "Give Us Care, not COVID"
On May 11, 2023,The Massachusetts Coalition for Health Equity broadcast statements by advocates for safe healthcare using a large TV in the rear of a van that displayed banner, "Give Us Care, not COVID." The van appeared at the office of the Department of Public Health and at the State House. Image taken from video by Mary Jirmanus Saba, courtesy Mass Coalition for Health Equity.

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Office of the Tenant Advocate

Why is this bill, H3868 An Act to create the office of the tenant advocate in the Office of the Attorney General, so important? This bill will assure tenants of their rights by providing accountability for landlords. Today, across the Commonwealth, a significant minority of landlords of subsidized and public housing fail in their responsibility to provide peaceful enjoyment and prevent hostile environment harassment, thus creating pain and suffering for tenants who can find no relief or remedy. The fundamental cause is the lack of accountability for errant landlords. Most landlords, operating under the same constraints, choose to provide a more hospitable environment. Eliminating hostile environment harassment is essential for building constructive collaboration among tenants and landlords. The bill has a strong foundation in law, research, and the urgent need is confirmed by the experience and testimony of tenants.

A Better Outcome

We tenants hope for an understanding landlord and management so that issues can be resolved smoothly. But we’re not always so lucky. I report here on a landlord-tenant conflict that was resolved to the satisfaction of both.

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Even The Sparrow Has Found A Home

Alas, not every child finds a safe home and sparrows do fall. A child fell while in the nest of a car, the shelter the mother could provide when she could not afford the inn.

According to the report by Julie Manganis, Mother facing charges after 2-year-old child dies of an apparent drug overdose, Vanessa Jeising carried the lifeless body of her two-year-old daughter, Lilly Iorio, to Lahey Hospital in Peabody, after they spent the night in her car. The mother has been arrested on charges relating to her daughter’s death.

Free Our Homes 

Statue of man on horse with golden dome of the state house in background
§ An office of the tenant advocate shall be established within the Office of the Attorney General. The office shall assure that the rights of all tenants living in public or subsidized housing are protected, with the primary focus to hold landlords or housing authorities accountable for situations of hostile environment harassment.