Over 900 people filled the main sanctuary pews and two overflow rooms at Bethel AME Church in Jamaica Plains to call on elected officials to work with Greater Boston Interfaith Organization and the community to address equality and justice during these times of uncertainty.
The rally was sponsored by the Washington Interfaith Network, a congregation-based community organizing group. Members of the organization said they had been visiting residents at the shelter in the past six weeks, and have been stunned by their stories.
On Tuesday, residents spoke of power outages and uncooked meat served in the cafeteria. One held up a sign saying, “No rats, no roaches.” “I have been sick and my daughter has been sick,” said Bre Archie, 35, who has lived in the shelter for 16 months. “This is no place for children,” she added. “Its stressful for adults.”
On Sunday, January 5th, NBC Dateline aired an important story on Metro IAF's work to pressure the New York City Housing Authority to clean up the mold and moisture that causes asthma. This work led to a legal settlement with NYCHA and the CITY in December.