ACE Blog

Today's Jammin' for Justice Awardee: Morley Street Neighborhood Association (MSNA) and Dana Lanzillo of Saul Ewing

May 21, 2012

Jammin' for Justice, our annual fundraiser, is this Wednesday, May 23! Don't miss out on music, drinks, appetizers and celebrating EJ victories this year with the 2012 EJ Awards.

Today we'd like to share more about awardee Morley Street Neighborhood Association (MSNA) and Dana Lanzillo of Saul Ewing:

Morley Street Neighborhood Association, 2006

Morley Street Neighborhood Association (MSNA) formed almost three decades ago with the goal of converting an empty lot in Fort Hill into a green space for the community. MSNA has long used this vacant for local activities that include a play place for children and neighborhood cookouts. To ensure future use as a community space, MSNA decided to pursue using the site permanently.

Dana C. Lanzillo, Esq.

Co-chairs Carol Best and former ACE attorney Quita Sullivan continued the process of acquiring this land. After many years of negotiations, MSNA won the land from the city and had it transferred to the Cooper Community Center (Cooper). MSNA now leases this lot and the neighborhood has a permanent space to enjoy. This victory shows how the tenacity of residents can lead to powerful organizing and is an inspiration to all of us who work to increase green spaces in our communities.

Dana C. Lanzillo of Saul Ewing, representing MSNA pro bono as a Massachusetts Environmental Justice Assistance Network (MEJAN) volunteer, was responsible for the complex paperwork throughout the negotiations for the lot. Dana worked with MSNA, the Boston Redevelopment Authority and Cooper, and also appeared before the Environmental Section Public Service/Pro Bono Committee with Quita Sullivan to advocate for the transfer of this lot. His hard work and dedication helped make the acquisition of this community space possible. Congratulations Dana and MSNA residents on your tremendous work!

Today's Jammin' for Justice Awardee: Massachusetts Senior Action Council (MSAC)

May 17, 2012

Our annual fundraiser and celebration, Jammin' for Justice, is this Wednesday, May 23! Join us for music, drinks, appetizers and great company, and help us recognize the recipients of our 2012 EJ Awards.

Today we'd like to share more about awardee Massachusetts Senior Action Council:

MSAC members at Mass Senior Action Day

Founded in 1981, Massachusetts Senior Action Council (MSAC) is a statewide organization with seven chapters, over 1,100 members and a history of effective organizing.

Bringing seniors of low and moderate income together with people with disabilities, MSAC works for the well-being of all people with a special focus on seniors. MSAC is successful in winning campaigns, developing leadership and organizing skills, and building community.

Throughout the Save the T campaign, MSAC has actively opposed all fare hikes and service cuts, successfully bringing senior and disabled riders to the forefront of the statewide conversation on public transit.

Members have pushed back against fare hikes for THE RIDE, where disproportionally high increases would limit the mobility of those who rely on paratransit. MSAC took the fight directly to Legislators, mic checking a House session during the budget talks in April. In addition, MSAC has stood with the Youth Affordabili(T) Coalition (YAC) in calling for a Youth Pass, and with the T Riders Union (TRU) in demanding the implementation of our Fast Five solutions.

Meet our Fast Five superheroes!

March 6, 2012

Saving the T, millions at a time!

Have you met our Fast Five superheroes? Each hero provides an immediate solution to stop MBTA fare hikes and service cuts. We are also asking out Governor and legislators to find long-term solutions to fix the T.

Get a copy of our Fast Five fact sheet (pdf) to share around! Be sure to join us at our rally on March 14 to tell the MBTA board we say No Service Cuts and No Fare Hikes! See more...

Massport assuming operations of ferry and SL1 services can save $50 million
Renegotiating bad interest rate swaps with banks can save $25 million


Taking back Boston, one house and lot at a time

October 6, 2011

Marchers headed toward the Bank of America building after a rally at Boston Common

Last week's Right to the City (RTTC) Member Congress and Take Back Boston events showed the power of community-building in a shared experience filled with determination, solidarity and love.

We opened with a convening of member groups in RTTC on Thursday, leading up to two days of massive actions and rallies calling out the corporate greed, predatory lending practices and disinvestment that have decimated lower-income communities and communities of color.

REEP helps lead rally chants

On Friday, we marched with over 3,000 people from across the country to demand an end to foreclosures, full funding for youth jobs and local hiring for green jobs, culminating in a demonstration and civil disobedience action at Bank of America.

Saturday, we held events in the Four Corners neighborhood of Dorchester that included a block party for residents.

Our friends at City Live/Vida Urbana took back a foreclosed home, cleaning, decorating and holding it for the father and son who were evicted a year ago.

Chelsea TRU improves access for Route 112 riders

July 9, 2011

Route 112 now stops directly at the store

ACE members in the Chelsea T Riders Union (TRU) recently improved access for bus riders on Route 112.

The T has agreed to run all Route 112 buses to the Market Basket in Admiral’s Hill, starting with the summer schedule on June 25. The bus will now drive into the parking lot and stop directly on the right side of the building.

Two years ago, a new Market Basket was opened across the street from the former store, but the bus continued to use the old stop, forcing riders—including elderly and disabled passengers—to cross a busy street and parking lot for groceries.

In fall 2010, the route was changed to service the new Market Basket, but buses were still stopping at the old site. Because the Admiral’s Hill stop is in a cul-de-sac, drivers were confused over whether the Wellington- or Wood Island-bound buses were supposed to stop at the store.

“This calls for a celebration! I’ve been fighting for this for over a year,” said Marjorie Delorian, a member of ACE and Chelsea TRU. “A lot of the seniors are handicapped, or they’ve got bundles, and it’s too much for them to cross the parking lot. This is a necessity. It will make so many seniors happy.”

Youth Way Campaign Releases Report, Demands Youth Pass

June 9, 2011

We demand a youth pass!

This is an exciting week for the Youth Way on the MBTA Campaign!

After three years of youth-led research and organizing for a new Youth Pass, we are releasing a report titled Opportuni(T): Youth riders, the affordability crisis, and the Youth Pass solution. The report is now available on our Youth Way website.

While thousands of youth depend on the MBTA and ride it daily, many can’t afford to pay adult fares. As Opportuni(T) shows, affordable access for youth riders on public transportation benefits everyone. Public transit is part of a sustainable future for the Boston area, and improving access for youth today encourages life-long public transit riders tomorrow.

We propose the creation of a new Youth Pass, an unrestricted monthly LinkPass available for ages 12 to 21 at Charlie Card machines for $10 a month. While the MBTA provides discounted student fares, the benefit reaches less than 50 percent of young people. The Youth Pass is an innovative solution to young people’s crisis of affordability. Its creation will transform and increase youth riders’ access to the MBTA, bridging the transportation gap to education, employment, healthcare and community involvement.

It's here! Jammin' for Justice today!

May 26, 2011

We're so excited that Jammin' for Justice is finally here! It's been wonderful hearing from members as RSVPs come rolling in, and each day feels a little birthday-like as new items arrive in the mail for the Silent Auction.

Please join us tonight to celebrate the struggle for environmental justice!

Jammin' for Justice
Thursday, May 26, 2011
6:00 to 9:00 p.m.

Hibernian Hall
184 Dudley Street
Roxbury, MA 02119

You already know all the great things about this event:

  • Live bands
  • Free admission
  • Delicious appetizers, dinner and dessert
  • Open bar with beer and wine
  • Extensive Silent Auction with items like Red Sox tickets, massages, zip lining tours, vacation home stays, Daily Show tickets and more!
  • EJ Awards to amazing people and groups
  • And much more!

If that doesn't convince you, check out some of our member's reasons for coming to Jammin', presented for the first time ever in haiku form!

Today's Jammin' for Justice EJ Award: Chuck Turner

May 24, 2011

Chuck Turner

Chuck Turner is an iconic and crucial voice in the social justice movement of Boston.

Before he ran for office, Chuck was a community organizer and activist working with families who were losing homes to gentrification in the ‘60s, with communities to turn a 10-lane highway plan into a nearly five mile park in the ‘70s, with union workers to fight job discrimination in the ‘80s, and speaking against imperialism from the Middle East to Dudley Square in the ‘90s and beyond.

More recently, he worked tirelessly as a City Councilor to ensure that residents of Roxbury had a voice and an advocate at the city level.

There are hundreds of stories about Chuck's commitment to communities of color and the social justice movement—his support of ACE has been no exception.

Shortly after taking office, Chuck attended an EJ study group hosted by ACE about the struggles and victories of the civil rights and environmental justice movements. He inspired our staff, board and youth with his stories of organizing, especially his experience working with civil rights hero Ella Baker.