Raymond Maldonado (25) came to the US from the Dominican Republic in 2009, and now lives with his mom, a hotel housekeeper, and two younger brothers in Mattapan in Boston.
He finished high school back home, has learnt to speak conversational English, and wants to learn English fluently and go to school to become a graphic designer.
The only problem is that what he hoped to achieve by coming to the US has been stalled by a moving treadmill of hard work, long hours, and low pay just to make ends meet.
Allison Crerand (25), originally from Rochester, New York, now lives in Brookline in Boston after she recently moved there from Somerville, Mass.
She went to school at Ithaca College in upstate New York, got an undergraduate degree in history there, and originally planned on pursuing a position in the government.
For her trouble, Allison racked up nearly $100,000 in debt with the government-sponsored student-loan provider, Sallie Mae, now works in a bakery full-time, and has gone through several jobs already.
Randyn Miller (32) moved to Massachusetts from Oklahoma for school at the New England Conservatory seven years ago.
Now living in Lynn, Mass. he has a job as an administrative assistant in a large Boston-area university, working in a research department.
An opera singer by gift and training, he has what he calls a “bigger voice” that “takes longer to mature”, and took advanced training to develop his ability.
BOSTON/Dorchester – Around 600 members and supporters of the Boston Public Schools’ Bus Drivers’ Union, Local 8751 of the United Steelworkers, some from as far afield as California, Washington state, Baltimore, and New York, rallied at the Freeport bus yard on Dorchester Avenue in Boston Saturday. The protest came after a further two union officials were fired by their employer, Veolia, after what was widely reported as a strike by the union on October 8th. The bus drivers are strongly claiming that they never went on strike, instead claiming that they were locked out by their employer following contract violations by the company and a request by the union for a meeting with management. Former union local President Garry Murchison, Vice President Steve Gillis, and Chairman of the union’s Grievance Committee Steve Kirschbaum have all been fired by Veolia. Union Recording Secretary, Chief Steward at the Charlestown bus yard, and another one of those fired by the company, Andre Francois, spoke to Open Media Boston. Boston City Councilor Charles Yancey, who has recently called for a City Council hearing on Veolia’s labor practices, spoke out in support of the bus drivers. Former Boston City Councilor Chuck Turner also spoke out in support. According to a press statement by Veolia provided to Open Media Boston, the employees were terminated following a disciplinary process outlined in a collective bargaining agreement. (Published on Open Media Boston)
BOSTON/State House – Advocates called on state legislators to adopt tougher restrictions on gun sales in the Bay State Wednesday. Around 200 members and supporters of the Massachusetts Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence gave public speeches at the State House before lobbying public officials. Ann Krantz of the Massachusetts chapter of gun-control advocacy group, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, explained what the coalition demands. Now an outreach worker giving back to the community, Stephen Walker spoke at the event about becoming involved in gun crime at a young age. Debbie Wengrovitz of the Temple Isaiah in Lexington, also spoke about losing a family member to a gun-related suicide. Several state representatives spoke in support of the event. Pro-gun advocates Gun Owners’ Action League dispute the Coalition’s demands. (Published on Open Media Boston and aired on WMBR)