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Supporting Toys for Tots

Mayor Wu Gives Plan on Restoring Long Island

Mayor Wu speaks about her inspection of Long Island for recovery use. by Rick Winterson


n Tuesday, Mayor Michelle Wu held an outdoor press availability at the west end of Terminal Street overlooking South Boston’s Reserved Channel. The purpose of this was to present her update on restoring Long Island as a substance abuse recovery facility, along with the City’s progress concerning Mass/Cass that


had been promised by mid-January. After touring Long Island via a Boston Fire Department harbor boat, she disembarked on Terminal Street promptly at 12:15, as scheduled. Accompanying the Mayor were Dr. Monica Bharel (Senior Advisor), Dr. Bisola Ojikutu (Boston Public Health Commission Director), Sheila Dillon (Chief of Housing), Dion Irish (Chief of Operations), and several other officials from her administration. The media presence at the press availability was intense – a half-dozen major Boston TV channels and a number of newspapers. Long Island has been closed to regular traffic for the last seven years, after its access bridge was condemned, shut down, and then demolished. Therefore, it was no surprise when Mayor Wu said that many buildings were “dilapidated”. Despite Boston’s continuing efforts to heat and maintain Long Island’s structures since their 2014 closure, the Continued on Page 3

The South Boston Catholic Academy Student Council Hosted their Annual Toy Drive for Toys for Tots. Thank you to our terrific Student Council members for their great work, Ms. Brogan, our Physical Education Teacher, for organizing this drive, and to all our students, families, and friends that donated new and unwrapped toys to this year’s Toys for Tots drive @ marinetoysfortotsfoundation! More photos on page 10 & 11.


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Mayor Wu Hosts Swearing-In Ceremony for Boston City Councilors

ayor Michelle Wu today held an outdoor swearing-in ceremony at Boston City Hall to formally inaugurate new and returning City Councilors. The Mayor previously announced the event was moved outdoors because of the surging Omicron variant. A previously planned inaugural celebration has been postponed until spring. “I know the deep responsibility that our constituents place upon us and I know the power of the Boston City Council to make sure that we are moving forward,” said Mayor Michelle Wu. “As our new colleagues join alongside our returning colleagues, those who I have been proud and honored to serve alongside for many years, I know the progress that we will continue to see in this City. In this moment, our constituents in our community expect us to move with urgency, to open doors for everyone and to deliver results.” Boston’s swearing-in for newlyelected City officials is required by City Charter to take place on the first Monday in January. At-large

Councilors include sitting Councilors Michael Flaherty and Julia Mejia, along with new Councilors Ruthzee Louijeune and Erin Murphy. Districts 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, and 9 will be represented by sitting Councilors Lydia Edwards, Ed Flynn, Frank Baker, Ricardo Arroyo, Kenzie Bok, and Liz Breadon, respectively. Brian Worrell is a new Councilor who will represent District 4, Kendra Hicks is a new Councilor who will represent District 6, and Tania Fernandes Anderson is a new Councilor who will represent District 7. The incoming Councilors sworn in during Monday’s historic ceremony represent many key milestones: Tania Fernandes Anderson is the

first African and first Muslim City Councilor, Kendra Hicks is the first woman of color to represent District 6, and Ruthzee Louijeune is the first Haitian-American City Councilor. Also newly-sworn into the City Council is Erin Murphy, a dedicated BPS teacher, mother, and advocate for those struggling with substance use; and Brian Worrell, a small business

owner and the first Black man to serve on the Council since 2017. “As we mark this new year, it’s truly not just about the passage of time, but the progress that the City has seen and that we will continue to rush into in this time of great consequence,” said Mayor Wu. “I’m so excited to join my colleagues in celebrating our five new City Councilors.”

City of Boston Credit Union Support Boston Police Officer Health & Wellness Initiatives Final Grant will provide $250,000 in Funds to Support BPD Health & Wellness Team in Promoting Prevention Screenings and Increase Program Capacity By Brenna Galvin


ity of Boston Credit Un ion (CBC U ) presented the Boston Police Department with the third installment of a $250,000 grant over five years that allows the BPD to provide services and programs necessary for improved health and wellness of officers. The 2019 initiative continues to be supported through funding from

the Credit Union and Runners Club that will allow the BPD to provide services and programs necessary for improved health and safety of officers. “We’re proud to continue to support this initiative that provides comprehensive support to BPD members,” said Neil Gordon, President & CEO of the City of Boston Credit Union. “This initiative has seen life-saving results and continues to create a safer, healthy environment for the men and women of the department who are committed to serving our community every day.” In addition to the $250,000 grant, the City of Boston Credit Union continues to support the Boston Police Department through Financial Education and Literacy programs with

(L to R): CEO Neil Gordon, Head Teller Theresa O’Connell, Director Tom Tinlin, Director Cecil Jones, BPD Detectives Benevolent Society VP Bob Griffin, Treasurer Joe Sullivan, CBCU Director Susan Connolly, BPD Superior Officers Federation President Jeannie Carroll, Chairman of the Board Gregory Rooney, Director Brian Gill, BPD Benevolent Society President Donald Caisey, Secretary Troy Hartgrove newly appointed cadets. Physical and mental health along with financial security are key to keeping our first responders safe on the job,” said CBCU Chairman

of the Board Gregory Rooney. “ As a member-driven institution, we are proud to continue to support our members and first responders toward leading fulfilling and rewarding lives.”




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Long Island 400,000 square feet area under roof has suffered from water damage. A complete engineering inspection would likely reveal other problems, such as dock damage and wear-and-tear to roads and fire station. Oddly enough, on the positive side, a considerable amount of usable equipment is still kept on Long Island. Even so, Mayor Wu stressed that reopening Long Island would be a major long-term project, requiring a complete redefinition of Long Island’s “potential”, as well as significant financing. The Mayor and her staff were quite emphatic that immediate housing issues, such as replacing the encampment nicknamed “Mass/Cass” and the substance abuse problems that go with Mass/Cass, won’t be resolved by any Long Island recovery project. Long Island is a “medium- to long-term” project; Mass/Cass must be resolved essentially immediately. This led to challenging questions being asked by the press, concerning just how soon Mass/Cass will be disbanded and

Mayor Wu arrives by fireboat from Long Island for her Terminal St. press conference. its people placed elsewhere. Mayor Wu responded by saying that these current problems are still ongoing, but housing for more than half of those people has been identified and will be opened soon (including the nearby, controversial Roundhouse Hotel). It wasn’t a major topic at Tuesday’s press conference, however rebuilding the Long Island Bridge, while possible, has been brought to a standstill. A replacement bridge would cost in

excess of $100 million ($100,000,000 dollars), but in the long run, this is still less expensive and more accessible than opening a regular ferry service to Long Island from Boston Harbor. The problem has been Quincy where the original bridge to Long Island once had its mainland access. Right from the beginning, Quincy’s Mayor Koch has adamantly refused to allow construction of a new bridge to be started. Quincy’s officials first claimed a new bridge would

create unacceptable traffic problems; now they claim (for whatever reason) that it would cause environmental problems. But near the end, attendees at Tuesday’s Mayoral press conference mentioned how useful a restored Long Island would be for substance abuse recovery programs. Because of its isolation and its naturally quiet beauty, Mayor Wu must continue the effort to develop its reuse. Stay tuned!

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City Councilor At-Large Murphy Getting Settled into New Role By Ginger DeShaney


ew City Councilor At-Large Erin Murphy was sworn in for the second time in a month on Monday, signaling the start of her official term. Murphy got a headstart in learning the ropes at City Hall after being sworn in on Dec. 1, 2021, to fill Mayor Michelle Wu’s at-large seat. “It’s been exciting,” Murphy said in mid-December after her first few weeks. “I’ve been finding my way around.” When Wu was sworn in early to finish out Marty Walsh’s term, her at-large seat from the 2019 election came open. The charter states that at-large council seats cannot go empty for any period of time, Murphy said. So, the seat was offered to the runner-up from the 2019 election, Alejandra St. Guillen, who declined. Murphy, who was the next highest vote-getter after St. Guillen in 2019, was then asked to fill the seat. Murphy attended every meeting and hearing she could before the end of the year, talked with central staff and other City Councilors and their staffs, and took in all the advice she could. “It’s just learning the procedures in real time and how things go and what the protocol is and how the hearings are run … that’s been good,” said Murphy, who moved into Councilor Ed Flynn’s old office in December.

(Flynn moved into Wu’s old office.) Murphy is the only teacher on the City Council, having taught in Boston Public Schools for more than 20 years. But she brings a perspective not just as a teacher but also as a parent who raised her kids in the city, navigated the school system, and dealt with the pains and struggles that go along with that. “It’s not an easy process,” she said. “I know that not just as a teacher advocating for my students and families but as a parent myself.” Murphy, 51, ran for City Council for the same reasons she taught in BPS: “I love the city. I love the kids, the families, and I want the city to work for all of us.” Murphy loved her job as a teacher. “I definitely felt like I was still a great teacher and enjoying it,” she said. “But there was that moment where I felt I could do more. I could support and advocate for more families across the city.” Murphy, who lives in Dorchester, was a fixture in South Boston – and every other neighborhood in the city – on the campaign trail. She has ties to Southie: Her uncle owns Murphy’s Jewelry, her aunt, Kay Walsh, “has worked in South Boston forever,” Murphy said, and when she worked at the Murphy and Henderson schools, she had a lot of Southie families. “Thank you, Southie,” she said of the neighborhood’s support for her. “I am grateful for everyone’s support. I’m grateful for this

City Councilor At-Large Erin Murphy pictured with Secretary of Labor, Marty Walsh (former Mayor of Boston) at the swearing in.

City Councilor At-Large Erin Murphy being sworn into office opportunity but I also understand the enormous responsibility I have, so I take this really seriously,” Murphy said. “I’m going to put in the work to make sure I do a good job. I’m going to be listening to the concerns and needs in South Boston and every neighborhood across the city. I’m also going to work closely with the elected officials and community leaders in South Boston.” It’s important to Murphy to build relationships with her colleagues because “there’s a lot of work to be done.” She’s already had coffee or chatted with her fellow councilors. “That’s important to me so we can build off of that and work together to get things done. “We’re really trying to push policy and make changes and get things done for the city.” As a new councilor, Murphy knows she doesn’t know everything, “but I think that’s what I’ve always known as a teacher – another skill coming from the teacher world – you’re a lifelong learner so you’re always going to have things to learn. That’s part of the relationship-building.” As an at-large councilor, Murphy’s focus is on the entire city. The following issues are top of mind for her.

Bringing Boston back as the city comes out of COVID and making sure small businesses are supported. Advocating for and supporting students and families, schools and education, and making sure there are quality public schools in every neighborhood. Addressing Mass and Cass.

“It’s a public health crisis and we can’t ignore it anymore,” Murphy said. “But we also have to make sure we’re listening to and advocating for not just those struggling on the streets but also the business owners, schoolchildren, residents in those areas, the hospitals and the stores … Everyone is struggling down there. We need to make sure that every stakeholder is at the table.” Advocating for seniors and veterans. Staying on top of constituent services and quality of life issues. “The end result is that people have the city working for them,” she said. Murphy’s kids – who range in age from 22 to 32 – are excited about her new role. After not earning a seat in the 2019 election, she picked herself up and jumped right back in. “It was a good lesson for them,” Murphy said. “When you want something you just work hard and you keep going. You might not get it the first time, but it doesn’t mean you won’t get it.”

Website: www.Erinforboston. com Instagram: @erinforboston Facebook: https://www. City of Boston website: https:// city-council/erin-murphy Email: erin.murphy@boston. gov Phone: 617-635-3115




Mayor Wu Announces Boston Police Commissioner Search Committee


ayor M ic hel le Wu announced t he format ion of a f ive-member committee to steer the public engagement and search process for the next Boston Police Depa r tment (BPD) Commissioner, a group of deeply respected law and public sa fet y professiona ls and community leaders. The Committee will be chaired by retired Justice Geraldine Hines of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. The Committee will engage f irst in public and stakeholder meetings to set parameters for the search, then identif y and inter view prospective candidates, and make recommendations to the Mayor in the coming months. The search for the Boston Police Commissioner is a critical step in achieving reforms and stability in the nation’s oldest municipa l law enforcement agency. Superintendent-in-Chief Gregory P. Long is currently serving as Acting Commissioner and will remain in the role until a permanent Commissioner is appointed. Commissioner Long will serve as an advisor to the Search Committee.

The members of the Search Committee are: Justice Geraldine Hines (r e t i r e d ), Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, chair Edward F. Davis III, former Commissioner, Boston Police Department B i s hop Wi l l i a m E. Dickerson II, Senior Pastor, Greater Love Tabernacle Church Abrigal Forrester, Executive Director, Teen Empowerment Jasmine



Professor of Law and Deputy Director of Research & Policy, Center for Antiracist Research, Boston University “We know that investing in public safety and health, and achieving needed police reforms, will depend on committed and visionary leadership for the city and the Boston Police,” said Mayor Michelle Wu. “With the support of Justice Hines, Commissioner Long, and this remarkable group of civic leaders, we are taking a critical step in our broader efforts to bring new standards of accountability and oversight to policing, enhance public safety for all our residents, and build community trust.” “Ser ving as Acting Commissioner of the Boston Police Department is the honor of a lifetime, but one I intended to be temporary,” said Superintendentin-Chief and Acting Boston Police Commissioner Gregory P. Long. “I am pleased to support and advise the Mayor and the search committee on the search for a permanent Commissioner and will remain in this role until my successor arrives.” T he members of t he C om mit tee each bring a deep commitment to public engagement and communit y out re ach, wh ich w i l l be i m me d i ate ly re f le c te d in the work of the committee. Supported by staff in the Mayor’s Office, Justice Hines and members of the search committee will host their first two virtual public engagement sessions on January 20 and January 26, with more to follow. The Committee will also meet wit h communit y a nd law enforcement groups to ensure their views on BPD leadership are ref lected in the process.

Boston Police Commissioner

Public Listening Sessions: Thursday, January 20, 6pm Wednesday, January 26, 12pm “The choice of the next Boston Police Commissioner is a decision of great consequence for our city and the people of B oston,” sa id Ju st ic e Geraldine Hines (retired) of the Ma ssachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, Chair of the Search Committee. “Starting this month, my search committee colleagues and I will be meeting with community leaders and members of the public to ensure that their voices are heard and included in this process. I thank Mayor Wu for entrusting me with this important responsibility as we begin the long and difficult task of reforming policing in our City and advancing a public safety agenda for all Bostonians.” “From my seven years serving as Commissioner of BPD, I know that to truly deliver public safety, we need leadership that is committed to taking on the hard challenges of systemic reform,” said Edward F. Davis III, former Commissioner, Boston Police Depa r tment. “I’m gratef u l for Mayor Wu’s leadership and I look forward to helping build a stronger Department and a safer cit y for a ll.” “Our next Boston Police C om m i s sioner mu s t le a d with a communit y-centered

approach that builds trust across Boston’s neighborhoods through positive enga gement,’’ sa id Bishop William E. Dickerson II, Senior Pastor, Greater Love Tabernacle Church. “I look forward to working with my colleagues to incorporate the voices of those impacted by trauma and violence in our city.” “A s a f irst generation Caribbean-American growing up in Codman Square, I experienced first-hand the root causes of crime and criminalization that Boston’s youth experience every day,” said Abrigal Forrester, Executive Director of Teen Empowerment. “I’m committed to elevating the voices of young people in this communit y-led process to reimagine our public safety systems from the ground up.” “As we continue to reckon with the impact of systemic racism on policing and violence, this is an opportunity for Boston to reimagine the role of the police as part of our broader infrastructure for public safety and public health,” said Jasmine Gonzales Rose, Professor of Law and Deputy Director of Research & Policy, Center for Antiracist Research, Boston University. “I am honored to be chosen by Mayor Wu as a member of the Committee and for the opportunity to engage with Bostonians over this important choice for the city’s future.”




Polar Plunge 2022 a Success by Rick Winterson Photos by Ginger DeShaney


ou can’t keep the g o o d p e ople of South Boston down. The 2022 Pola r Plunge on New Year’s Day last Saturday went of f like clock work – a S out h B oston t r ad it ion c ont inue s u ninterr upted. A nd hu nd re d s took pa r t. De spite the Curley C om mu n it y C enter, a .k .a . the L Street Bathhouse, being closed South Boston’s Pola r Plu n g e s h a v e c ont i nu e d . Prior Pola r Plu nge s in 2020, 2019, and further back used to draw many hundreds of Plungers to each annual event; they a ll gathered inside the Curley Center. Varying tides and temperatures have always had their effects on how many showed up to take the Plunge, but estimated numbers earlier this century have ranged from around 500 up to more than 750 Plungers each year. South Boston’s Polar Plunge is the

oldest such event in the nation, even though there’s a nother group of long-time Plungers located in Pennsylvania who might argue that claim. We don’t know the exact year South Boston’s Polar Plunges began, but it is a custom that started after the Civil War when Union veterans returned home from the South. These local Plungers e vent u a l ly b e c a me k now n as “The L Street Brownies”, supposedly because they sported suntans all winter long. South Boston’s Pola r Plu nge s a re an even older tradition than our St. Patrick ’s/ Evacuation Parade, which began in 1901.

The 2022 Polar Plunge on New Year’s Day was led by the Greater Boston Firef ig hters Pipes & Drums, who stepped off from the Woods’ L Street Tavern at 9:30 a.m. They e scor ted a la rge group of Plu ngers dow n M St reet to M Street Beach, joining up w it h a not her group of Plungers already on the Beach. I n tot a l, hu nd red s of Plungers took part – perhaps a s ma ny a s t hree hundred. A s usua l, the costumes were “unusua l ”, to say the lea st. T he fog sig n a le d w a r mer t ha n norma l weat her (over 50 deg ree s) a nd t he Old

Harbor/Dorchester Bay waters d isplayed a c a l m w ind le ss sur face. Like a lways, t he shrieks, smiles, and salutations of t he s w i m mer s w a r m ly greeted the 2022 New Year. Triumph, laughter, and sheer joy f illed the compa ratively warm, fogg y air as Plungers exited the water – “I loved it!”, “I really feel alive!”, “I’ll be back next year!”, and so on. Despite many challenges, Sout h Boston’s 2022 Pola r Plunge started of f the New Year on an extremely positive note. So we’ll repeat: “You ca n’t keep the good people of S out h B o s ton dow n ! ”






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ZONING HEARING The Zoning Commission of the City of Boston hereby gives notice, in accordance with Chapter 665 of the Acts of 1956, as amended, that a virtual public hearing will be held on January 12, 2022, at 9:30 A.M., in connection with Map Amendment Application No. 743 and a petition for approval of the Development Plan for Planned Development Area No. 131, 323-365 Dorchester Avenue Redevelopment, filed by the Boston Redevelopment Authority d/b/a the Boston Planning & Development Agency. Said map amendment would amend Map 4, South Boston,” by adding the designation “D,” indicating a Planned Development overlay to approximately 235,426 square feet (approximately 5.4 acres) of land near the intersection of Dorchester Avenue and Old Colony Avenue in South Boston. Said Development Plan would allow for the development of four new mixed-use buildings totaling up to 1,073,000 square feet of office; life science, which is inclusive of both Research and Development Uses, Scientific Laboratory Uses (“Life Science”); residential; and ground level retail/restaurant uses as well as off street parking. This meeting will only be held virtually and not in person. You can participate in this meeting by going to A copy of the amendment, the Development Plan and a map of the area involved may be obtained from the Zoning Commission electronically, and you may also submit written comments or questions to zoningcommission@ Interpreting services are available to communicate information at this hearing. If you require interpreting services, please contact the following: or 617-918-4308. The meeting is scheduled for January 12, 2022. Please request interpreting services no later than January 7, 2022.

For the Commission Jeffrey M. Hampton Executive Secretary




The 2022 Mayor of Southie Campaign Kick-Off The 2022 Mayor of Southie campaign will kick off with a candidate and staff meeting held on Saturday, January 8th, 12 p.m. at the Martin F. McDonough American Legion Post 368 located at 329A W Broadway, South Boston

Food and refreshments will be provided. See you there! Due to the current pandemic and following the City of Boston Policy, candidates will be required to show proof of vaccination against COVID-19 in order to participate in the Mayor of Southie campaign. This can be done by showing a CDC vaccination card, a digital image of your CDC card, an image of any immunization record, a City of Boston app or any other COVID vaccine verification app. If for any reason a potential candidate feels uncomfortable meeting in a group session, we can accommodate them via remote video conferencing. We look forward to meeting with potential candidates, their supporters and any interested parties at the candidate meeting where we’ll explain the policies and procedures for the campaign, provide you with helpful insights from past mayors and contribute in any way we can towards your success. ‘Mayor of Southie’ was established to help raise funds to support the community and veteran-run South Boston St. Patrick’s Day / Evacuation Day Parade, with South Boston residents competing for the honorary and esteemed title of ‘Mayor of Southie’ by raising the most amount of funds to support the parade. The candidate that raises the most is declared Mayor of Southie and receives a prominent spot in the parade, in addition to various other honors. Candidates serve an invaluable role, in not only raising money for this time-honored South Boston tradition, but also in getting the community excited for the annual event, while supporting local businesses by holding events and fundraisers.

The campaign will begin the week of Monday, January 10th and end on Tuesday, March 15th with the new mayor publicly announced on St. Patrick’s Day, March 17th, 2022. Aside from your important contributions to the St. Patrick’s Day / Evacuation Day Parade and the South Boston community as a whole, not only will you preside over your constituents for the week’s celebrations but you’ll also be provided with: Your own mayoral sash A key role in the parade opening ceremony along with prominent VIPs & extensive media coverage A prominent spot in the 2022 parade for yourself and up to 5 supporters A plaque commemorating your accomplishments A surprise gift that in past years has included two tickets to the Dropkick Murphys at the House of Blues Boston & VIP passes for your friends and family pre and post-show in the House of Blues Foundation Room. Actual gift to be announced.

To throw your hat in the ring, gather more information, pose any questions or fashion media inquiries please contact Jay Fallon via email at




he South Boston Catholic Academy Student Council Hosted their Annual Toy Drive for Toys for Tots. Thank you to our terrific Student Council members for their great work, Ms. Brogan, our Physical Education Teacher, for organizing this drive, and to all our students, families, and friends that donated new and unwrapped toys to this year’s Toys for Tots drive @ marinetoysfortotsfoundation! Ms. Hoisl’s and Ms. Smith’s sixth-graders did an amazing job with their class project of creating their very own Enchanted Village of South Boston 2021! The sixth graders also guided and helped the other students from grades K0 to 5 with the scavenger hunt that was included with this class project. To celebrate Our Lady of Guadalupe’s Feast Day on December 12th, the students in Ms. Avery’s Spanish Class learned


SBCA December Highlights

how Mother Mary appeared to a farmer named Juan Diego in Mexico in 1531 and gave hope to the people of Mexico. Our Lady gave roses to Juan Diego as a sign that she truly appeared, and our first and second graders made their own flowers that we put on the bulletin board. Students also took a virtual field trip via Google Earth to Mexico where we saw the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe. May

we remember to come to Mary as our spiritual Mother as she always leads us closer to her Son, Jesus. The students in K2 did a fantastic job capturing the true meaning of the Christmas season, celebrating Jesus’ Birthday, on their bulletin boards in front of their classrooms. On behalf of our Principal Dr. Civian, the faculty, and staff at South Boston Catholic Academy we

wish everyone a Healthy and Happy 2022! God Bless Everyone! “For last year’s words belong to last year’s language. And next year’s words await another voice. And to make an end is to make a beginning.” – T.S. Eliot. New families are welcome to email Mrs. Jamie Brown at j.brow n@sbcat holicacademy. org to learn more about South Boston Catholic Academy.






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