MLAC releases FY20 budget fact sheet

Opinion: In Defense of Housing Court

Courts routinely OK’d unlawful payments from debtors

The Bay State Banner

Below is an excerpt from a November 21 article published by The Bay State Banner.

Lawyers from the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts announced Nov. 15 that they are suing Boston police and the mayor’s office for the public release of the city’s gang database.

Carol Rose, executive director of ACLU Massachusetts and Kade Crockford, director of the organization’s Technology for Liberty program, told journalists gathered via conference call last Thursday afternoon that they, along with several other civil rights groups, including the Children’s Law Center of Massachusetts and Greater Boston Legal Services, have filed a public records lawsuit against the Boston Police Department (BPD), police Commissioner William Gross, the Boston Regional Intelligence Center (BRIC) and the City of Boston, in the hope that law enforcement’s Gang Assessment Database, a list of suspected gang members about which very little is known, will finally be released.

“In Boston, we call our city a sanctuary for immigrants, but behind the scenes, under cover of secrecy, local law enforcement profiling systems allow young people to be targeted and deported — even when they haven’t been suspected of engaging in criminal activity,” said Rose.

Read more at The Bay State Banner.

Boston schools agree to change policies on suspensions

40 percent of kids are from low-income families, 

Below is an excerpt from an August 3 article published by the Nonprofit Quarterly.

After the mass shooting at a high school in Parkland, Florida earlier this year, schools are at the epicenter of national debates on gun violence and mental health. How can teachers and administrators deal with troubled students? And how can they make schools safer for all?

It’s not the first time that schools have been asked to address social problems that originate far outside their hallways. In a nation where more than 40 percent of kids are from low-income families, school teachers and staff regularly cope with problems far larger than algebra equations. Too often, their students are hungry, in need of medical care, traumatized by domestic violence, fearful of gangs, and living with perilous housing security or homelessness. Distressed kids act out their troubles in school, and overworked teachers often double as social workers.

Now, post-Parkland, some have called on us to “harden” our schools. President Trump and others have advocated arming teachers and recruiting former police and military personnel for school duty. The National Rifle Association is promoting its plan to re-envision schools as windowless bunkers surrounded by impenetrable fencing.

Read more at the Nonprofit Quarterly.