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Thursday, March 31, 2022

COUNCILOR LIZ BREADON CALLS FOR HEARING ON POST-PANDEMIC RECOVERY FOR BOSTON’S NON-GOVERNMENTAL, NONPROFIT SECTOR

COUNCILOR LIZ BREADON CALLS FOR HEARING ON POST-PANDEMIC RECOVERY FOR BOSTON’S NON-GOVERNMENTAL, NONPROFIT SECTOR

Councilor calls for City to consider directing federal funds to assist hard-hit local social sector

Boston, Mass. – Boston City Councilor Liz Breadon today filed an order for a hearing on the state of Boston’s non-governmental, nonprofit social sector and charting a post-pandemic recovery. [Recording]

The initiative for the hearing recognizes the vital contributions of non-governmental, nonprofit organizations often regarded as the voluntary, civic, social sector–or the “third sector” in contrast to the public and private sectors. Breadon raised the importance of viewing local community-based nonprofits as the City’s natural partners, serving the same constituents and working to address shared challenges. 

“Locally-based nonprofit organizations provide direct services across Boston while harnessing deep knowledge of community needs with a high-impact reach and an established presence as trusted messengers,” said District 9 City Councilor Liz Breadon. “The social sector has really stepped up to meet the needs of our residents throughout the past two years of the pandemic, and we must especially prioritize the sustainability of smaller nonprofits as essential toward charting our City’s recovery.”

The hearing order draws attention to negative sector-wide impacts of the pandemic on nonprofits, citing reports from the National Council of Nonprofits, the Center for Effective Philanthropy, and the Center for Civil Society Studies at Johns Hopkins University. The proposal is timely due to increased national scrutiny of the so-called “Great Resignation” and its pronounced impacts on the nonprofit social sector’s workforce recruitment and retention, in particular.

Breadon referred to the U.S. Treasury Department’s Final Rule for the State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds (SLFRF) program, released in January 2022, which clarified eligible uses for the City of Boston’s remaining $350 million in relief funds to include the eligibility of charitable nonprofit organizations as both recipients of assistance as well as being providers of assistance to others.

Mayor Michelle Wu today also announced that the City of Boston has received more than $38 million from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to be distributed among 15 nonprofit organizations that provide critical services and support to Boston’s unsheltered residents.

“The availability of once-in-a-generation resources through federal relief funds provides the potential to address longstanding challenges and improve conditions for our communities,” said Councilor Breadon. “Our local government and the nonprofit social sector are stronger together when we collectively invest in targeted collaboration and intentional, strategic partnerships. I look forward to working with the City administration and local leaders to discuss charting sustainability, relief, and recovery.”

The order, designated as Docket 2022-0436, has been referred to the City Council Committee on Boston’s COVID-19 Recovery and a hearing date is to be scheduled.

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