Press Release

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh

Joins Ray Flynn and Mel King

To Launch

Boston Peace and Democracy Discussions

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh (second from left) joins former Boston Mayor Ray Flynn and former State Representative Mel King (who ran against each other for Mayor in 1983) to launch Boston Peace and Democracy Discussions. Boston Housing Authority Director, Bill McGonagle (far right), and State Representative Byron Rushing (second from the right) join with children from the Vibrant Boston after-school program at the Lenox Camden Housing Development in Boston.

For Immediate Release: Tuesday, March 21, 2017

MAYOR MARTIN J. WALSH LAUNCHES BOSTON PEACE AND DEMOCRACY DISCUSSIONS WITH MAYOR RAY FLYNN AND MEL KING

Discussions to combat youth violence to begin through citywide collaborations

BOSTON – Tuesday, March 21, 2017 – Today, Mayor Martin J. Walsh will join former Mayor Ray Flynn and long-time community advocate Mel King to launch the Boston Peace and Democracy Discussions.

The Boston Peace and Democracy Discussions are designed to engage children in discussions with family members, teachers, librarians, police officers, street workers, nurses, doctors and clergy members about how to combat violence and create a more peaceful and democratic city and country. Peace and Democracy ebooks and digital games that encompass multicultural literature, activities and curriculum, will enhance the discussions.

“This partnership further enhances our commitment to providing our young people with the tools they need to combat violence in their own communities,” said Mayor Walsh. “I thank Ray Flynn and Mel King for supporting this effort, which will help to better serve our children and families by talking about these very important issues.”

The first Peace and Democracy Discussion will be supported with It Doesn’t Have to Be This Way: A Barrio Story (No tiene que ser así: una historia Del barrio) written by Luis J. Rodríguez, a book about a Latino boy who is being pressured to join a local gang and learns to overcome his troubles.

After reading and discussing this story about gangs and violence in one neighborhood in Los Angeles, California, students and participating adults will discuss their points of view about how violence in their city and community can be prevented.

Based on feedback from this launch, a prototype will be provided for free to select schools and educational organizations in Boston who serve grades 4-5. By September 2017, the program’s goal is to provide one ebook per grade level for all grade levels, encompassing pre-K to 12th grade, focusing on violence prevention. Future Boston Peace and Democracy Discussions will focus on discrimination and income inequality.

 (Boston, MA - 3/21/17) Former Boston Mayor Ray Flynn, left, and former state Rep. Mel King speak during the launch of of Boston Peace and Democracy Discussions in Roxbury, Tuesday, March 21, 2017. Staff photo by Angela Rowlings.

(Boston, MA - 3/21/17) Former Boston Mayor Ray Flynn, left, and former state Rep. Mel King speak during the launch of of Boston Peace and Democracy Discussions in Roxbury, Tuesday, March 21, 2017. Staff photo by Angela Rowlings.

 (Boston, MA - 3/21/17) Unique Bullock, 10, and Diorlis Almonte, 10, do a presentation about bullying during the launch of of Boston Peace and Democracy Discussions in Roxbury, Tuesday, March 21, 2017. Staff photo by Angela Rowlings.

(Boston, MA - 3/21/17) Unique Bullock, 10, and Diorlis Almonte, 10, do a presentation about bullying during the launch of of Boston Peace and Democracy Discussions in Roxbury, Tuesday, March 21, 2017. Staff photo by Angela Rowlings.

Click on the photo above to see a quick one minute video of Mayor Walsh’s press conference.

Education for Democracy Institute

The Education for Democracy Institute is a non-profit, tax-exempt educational organization that publishes eBooks, develops educational curriculum and digital games, and provides professional development and comprehensive school reform support. Our mission is to empower all students to be able to overcome the social obstacles in their lives, to realize their full academic and personal potential, and to develop the social skills and values needed to participate in and improve our democratic society.

The launching of Boston Peace and Democracy Discussions is the first major initiative of the Education for Democracy Institute. We hope to launch similar discussions in cities and towns across the United States in the future. 

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