BOSTON - A suit brought against three MIT students last week by the MBTA prevented them from presenting their findings on Boston subway security vulnerabilities at the DEFCON conference in Las Vegas. Professional security researchers have expressed concerns that the gag order and the treatment of the students as criminals may dissuade researchers from identifying vulnerabilities in public systems for fear of litigation. As a result, vulnerable systems may remain unfixed and pose a risk to those who use them.
BOSTON/Government Center - Over 150 advocates from immigrants rights organizations, unions, religious groups and allies held a rally at City Hall Plaza on Wednesday to demand fair immigration policies and denounce the ongoing raids against immigrant communities by U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement.
BOSTON/Beacon Hill - On Tuesday, Centro Presente of Somerville, the Center to Support Immigrant Organizing of Boston, Organization Maya K'iche of New Bedford and several other immigrant, community and religious organizations held a press conference on the State
BOSTON/Downtown Crossing - Over 100 unionized security officers and labor allies joined ununionized security officers in a march yesterday to demand that the non-union security company Palladion Services recognize Service Employees International Union Local 615 and bargain a union contract with their workers.
BOSTON/Beacon Hill - The hopes of advocates for the passage of a criminal justice bill (House Bill 5004 "An Act to Improve Certain Criminal Justice Matters") that would have reformed the controversial Criminal Records Information System were dashed this week when the House Ways and Means Committee failed to report the bill out favorably for a vote on the House floor. With the current 2 year session of the Massachusetts legislature now essentially over, the bill will have to be refiled for the next session later this year.
BOSTON/Government Center - Boston City Councilor Chuck Turner introduced a resolution to “declare that Boston, Massachusetts is a "Coke Free" city” and asks the city administration not to serve Coca-Cola products. Underlying the resolution is a show of solidarity with Colombian workers. Councilor Turner, whose resolution is supported by Team Unity (including Councilors Yoon and Yancey) and a host of community and labor organizations, referenced the violent deaths of over 4,000 Colombian trade unionists over the last 2 decades.
BOSTON/Beacon Hill - Over 100 people from several area community organizations and unions gathered at the State House Steps on Wednesday to rally in support of House Bill 5004 "An Act to Improve Certain Criminal Justice Matters" (the CORI Reform Bill) which would reform the Criminal Offender Records Information system to make it easier for former criminals to get jobs in Massachusetts.
BOSTON/Beacon Hill - Suffolk University contract janitors with ABM/One Source celebrated a union contract victory with a short rally on Tuesday in front of the Suffolk Law School. Several janitors, organized with SEIU Local 615, spoke to a crowd of about 20 supporters including union staffers, Suffolk students, and other unions and labor support groups.
The janitors' contract had been set to expire the same day, but union negotiators were able to make gains at the last minute. The proposed 5-year contract will go to members for a vote tomorrow.