Boston Task Force Releases Recommendations For Equitable Pandemic Recovery

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BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — A task force is out with its findings on how the city of Boston can foster an equitable recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Covid-19 Health Inequities Task Force was created in the spring of 2020 by former Boston Mayor Marty Walsh and charged with studying the disproportionate hit communities of color took when it comes to Covid-19.

At a press conference on Monday the task force unveiled it's 112-page report on the question of how to make Boston's recovery from the pandemic more equitable -- by addressing things like economic security, steady housing opportunities, health care, youth programs and more.

"[It's] the recognition that racism exists, that it is how we got here, it underlies why there's wealth inequality" Michael Curry, the CEO of the Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers said. "Of course people wanted a job, of course people wanted to build wealth and own homes and have saving plans, of course they wanted to make sure that their kids have access to opportunity and good schools and quality education -- but they were denied that."

Curry said that beyond wealth disparities, communities of color in the city also face heightened rates of death from illnesses and diseases -- including Covid-19.

"People don't want to die, live shorter lives, and die of heart disease, and cancer at higher rates -- it's just idiotic that we thought that it was about this individual choice -- it was about history of circumstance," Curry said.

Some of the key recommendations of the plan include increasing awareness of racism, providing employment opportunities, offering quality housing, eliminating food insecurity, and investing in youth.

Among other things, the task force aims to increase ownership and wealth among people of color, create diverse representation in positions of leadership, and expand opportunities for students of color.

"The health equity now plan is only an initial step towards the long recovery from Covid-19," the task force said in it's report. "The time is now for leaders from all corners of Boston to take part in rebuilding a Boston free of racial and health inequities."

Acting Boston Mayor Kim Janey is set to hold a press conference on Tuesday afternoon to discuss the task force's plan and recommendations.

WBZ NewsRadio's Karyn Regal (@Karynregal) reports.

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Written by Rachel Armany

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