ACE Blog

Congratulations to Dorchester Bay Youth Force!

May 24, 2010

Today’s Jammin' for Justice Environmental Justice Award honoree is Dorchester Bay Youth Force.

Dorchester Bay Youth Force in action!

In 2008, Dorchester Bay Youth Force joined a city-wide campaign to stop youth violence, organized by the United Youth and Youth Workers of Boston coalition. Members of Youth Force met with local banks and businesses in Upham's Corner and raised several thousand dollars for a youth jobs fund.

In spring 2009, after significant state budget cuts to jobs funding, Youth Force and REEP organized an emergency gathering, bringing together dozens of Boston teens to strategize an immediate response to the cuts. When the state did not restore the budget for youth jobs and violence prevention programs, the United coalition decided to formally dissolve.

Determined to bring back funding before the impacts of the cuts were felt, Youth Force members began meeting in the fall with youth programs across the city. Read more...

Congratulations to the Boston Grants Initiative!

May 22, 2010

Today’s Jammin' for Justice Environmental Justice Award honoree is the Boston Grants Initiative.

Staff of The New England Grassroots Environment Fund which administers the Boston Grants Initiative

The Boston Grants Initiative (BGI), administered by The New England Grassroots Environment Fund, provides grants to groups working on environmental justice, environmental health, green space and other projects in the greater metro neighborhoods of Boston, Chelsea, Somerville, and Cambridge. BGI interprets the word "environment" broadly and supports a wide range of activities focused on making our environment better, healthier and more sustainable. Read more...

Congratulations to United Neighbors of Lower Roxbury!

May 21, 2010

Today’s Jammin' for Justice Environmental Justice Award honoree is United Neighbors of Lower Roxbury.

Staff of UNLR

United Neighbors of Lower Roxbury (UNLR) is a grassroots resident neighborhood association advocating for environmental justice in the neighborhood of Lower Roxbury. It was founded in 1971 to protest a planned highway that would cut through the neighborhood and eliminate thousands of affordable housing units.

Since then, UNLR has continued to fight for public safety, increased public services, and community participation in decision-making processes. Read more...

TRU Newsletter May/June 2010: Ahora en Español!

May 19, 2010

The new T Riders’ Union (TRU) newsletter is now available online, in Spanish! Don't miss the news about our meeting with the MBTA, our Latino committee and our newest members. To see information on our campaigns and actions in English, see the TRU site, our Facebook page and our YouTube channel about transit justice. For more information, contact René.

Members of TRU march for a more just transit system. Miembros del Sindicato de Pasajeros marchan por un sistema de transporte que sea más justo.

El informativo más reciente del Sindicato de Pasajeros está disponible online, ¡en español! No se pierda la información sobre nuestra reunión con la MBTA, el nuevo comité Latino y los miembros nuevos del sindicato. Para aprender sobre nuestras campañas y acciones en inglés, vaya al sitio del Sindicato, al grupo de Facebook y a nuestro canal de YouTube. Para más información, póngase en contacto con René.

Honoring Howard Zinn

May 11, 2010

Here at ACE, we add our voice to the nationwide tribute of Howard Zinn, who led by his example and inspired us and several generations of American activists.

“He so believed in America that he believed it could transcend itself. He lifted up alternative futures, and insisted they were possible.”

      • —James Carroll, The Boston Globe, February 1, 2010
Howard Zinn (picture from

On January 27, 2010, the world lost one its most outspoken voices for social justice, historian and activist Howard Zinn. Best known as the author of A People's History of the United States, Zinn dedicated his life to the telling of history from the perspective of those who stood in opposition to the schemes of the powerful: those who fought against slavery and Jim Crow, who opposed war and militarism, who participated in the struggles of the working class, who demanded equality for women and the LGBTQ community, and many others.

He sought to use history in service of the creation of a more just world, once explaining, "I wanted students to leave my classes not just better informed, but more prepared to relinquish the safety of silence, more prepared to speak up, to act against injustice wherever they saw it." Read more...

New EJ report profiles organizing efforts in the green economy

March 29, 2010

"…For the first time in over 10 years my grandchildren can play outside in the yard and I don’t have to worry...I can plant in the ground and eat what I grow. I don’t have to worry about my basement flooding anymore and getting rashes on my skin when I touch the water."

—Little Village resident Martha Castellon

Environmental Justice and the Green Economy - Back cover

This victory is the result of a decade long struggle by members of Little Village Environmental Justice Organization (LVEJO), a grassroots group in Chicago leading efforts to clean up a superfund site. Profiled in our new report, Environmental Justice and the Green Economy, LVEJO's campaign shows how strong grassroots organizing can lead to achievements like securing the clean up of nearly 200 homes that went "above and beyond the federal levels of remediation."

Residents of lower income communities and communities of color like Little Village have been advancing a vision of sustainability and equality through the environmental justice movement. Eight of these stories are shared in our report by a group of U.S. environmental justice leaders, including ACE Executive Director Kalila Barnett and former director Penn Loh. Read more...

Remember to vote today!

September 22, 2009

Sign at a polling station in Dorchester

It's primary day in Boston, where voters will trim the list of candidates for mayor and city council. If you haven't already, please remember to vote! Polls are open until 8:00 p.m.

See a voter guide by Jamaica Plain Progressives that surveys mayoral and city council candidates on issues like education, transportation and youth violence.

Check your polling station and find out more from the city's Election Division. To register to vote, learn about absentee ballots and see upcoming candidate forums, see MassVOTE, non-partisan voting rights organization. Read more...

Major victory in Youth Way on the MBTA campaign!

September 10, 2009

A new school year, a new student pass

REEP with a sample Youth Pass

Due to the hard work of young people in the Youth Way on the MBTA campaign - which includes members of the Roxbury Environmental Empowerment Project (REEP) and Boston Youth Organizing Project (BYOP) - the student transit pass has now been extended from 8:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.

This change helps youth get home safely who travel past 8:00 p.m. due to jobs, study halls, after school programs and sports. Previously, young people who could not afford extra fares would be stranded in the evenings.

Because of the many restrictions on the student pass, Youth Way estimates that less than 15 percent of Boston-area youth use the pass. Making the pass more usable for young people will boost sales of the pass and encourage use of public transportation. Read more...