October 2, 2008
In Washington, Congress and the Bush administration are scrambling to stop the downward spiral of our financial markets. The plans in discussion would require a large investment of taxpayer money to buy the assets of failing financial institutions and save them from collapse.
Here in Boston, community, labor and political leaders are demanding that in addition to solving the current economic crisis, we must also focus on saving our communities from the impending collapse.
ACE partner Community Labor United (CLU) and other organizations in the Secure Jobs, Secure Communities Campaign held a press conference Tuesday announcing a Boston City Council hearing on corporate responsibility during the financial crisis. Speakers collectively called on businesses who are holding strong through the current economic meltdown to fill the gap in the bailout proposal – the gap between Wall Street and Main Street.
Noting the rising tide of youth violence, the flood of post-foreclosure, no-fault evictions, staggering (and growing) unemployment and the loss of career jobs with a living wage and benefits, the leaders urged an open dialogue between large corporations that have profited handsomely in the city of Boston and the community members and workers to whom they have a social responsibility.
The conference closed with a reading of the hearing order filed by Boston City Councilor Chuck Turner. This included the excerpt, "Whereas, government in a free market economy has the responsibility of balancing the interests of those who are profiting from government activity and those whose economic situation is made more difficult by the investments of governmentally supported businesses."
These are words of wisdom in a troubled time. Whether or not the federal government can implement a sweeping corporate bailout, the situation in our communities cannot be ignored or put off for a later date.
Check back at our calendar for the City Council hearing date, to be posted when announced.