By Sarah Maugaotega 10/24/17
Boston Mayor Marty Walsh is receiving strong criticism from communities of color. His administration’s work with topics like city gentrification, minority-owned businesses have fallen short of public expectation, according to a report from the NAACP’s Boston Branch on Oct. 22. The report condemns the Walsh administration and claims it has not kept promises to those communities.
The “Equity, Access, and Opportunity Report Card: The Walsh Administration’s Efforts and Results” grades the efforts put in place to combat problems for these communities, and their results.
The report gives Walsh’s efforts to combat Boston’s rapid gentrification a grade of “B,” and the results of those efforts a grade of, “D.” The NAACP says that from the years 2011 to 2016, only 2.3 percent of the 19,238 built units were considered to be affordable, which is only 447 housing units.
The Minority & Women Business Enterprises Program, created in 2016, was designed to help and support businesses owned by women and minorities. The report gives the efforts of this program a “B,” and the results of these efforts an “F.” The NAACP defends their grade with data that says only 1 percent of City spending went to minority and women owned businesses, amounting to $2.1 million out of $1.1 billion during the 2015 fiscal year.
Walsh defends his administration’s efforts, saying that the racial disparities in Boston did not start during his time as mayor. He said that there are many lessons to be learned from the report, and will make necessary changes in his second term, if he is re-elected after next month’s election.