Hélène has a vision for Boston to ensure that it is inclusive, accessible, and affordable for all families.
Equity & Inclusion
A community is only as strong as its most vulnerable members.
Boston is a city for dreamers. Nearly 700 people move to Boston each week looking to improve their lot through hard work and sacrifice. Yet generations of structural inequity have ensured that only those who are most privileged can effectively capitalize on the City's tremendous resources.
We are all impacted by this inequity. Rising living expenses, lack of capital for small businesses, pay inequity, and under-resourced public schools put the American Dream out of reach for lower-income communities, the working class, and the middle class.
To address this, I will work closely with a diverse set of stakeholders—both public and private, promoting existing resources and developing new initiatives—to help people move up the economic ladder. I will also work closely with the City's economic mobility programs to determine what can be done to make it possible for us to live more comfortably and sustainably in our District.
I am a strong supporter of public education. In my time at EF Education First, I designed language programs. Additionally, my mother is a translator, and I was lucky enough to spend many years in excellent public schools with access to effective extracurricular learning activities.
This is what every child deserves, and what all parents hope for in their community's schools.
Boston has the oldest public school system in the United States. We are connected to some of the best higher education institutions in the world. Many local families would prefer to send their children to public schools, but the reality is that some of our schools are struggling and families are concerned about their children's futures.
On the City Council, I will dedicate myself to ensuring that Boston Public Schools and their teachers receive the support they need—whether it be increased funding, better social-emotional supports, more rigorous academics, wrap-around services, or improved professional development opportunities—to create safe , welcoming, and productive learning environments. I will also highlight all the bright spots of our public education system to ensure that families understand their options.
All growth should be thoughtful growth.
As Boston’s buoyant economy attracts new talent, our cost of living is reaching new highs. A recent report from the Boston Globe reports that rents have gone up 4% this year, leaving the rent-burdened with limited options: pay up or leave. And while homeowners are less cost-burdened in comparison, many pay monthly mortgages exceeding 30% of their gross income. It is clear to me that affordability, now more than ever, is a major issue Boston must address.
If elected, I will support the Mayor’s and the City Council’s efforts to build a supply of affordable housing across the City, and I will push for even more. I support a range of measures to counter displacement and expand our affordable housing stock, including revising and resubmitting the original Jim Brooks Stabilization Act, reforming our Inclusionary Development Policy to mandate for 25% affordable units on-site and 30% off-site, and generating revenue for 100% deed-restricted affordable housing through linkage fees, commercial vacancy tax, and an AirBnB tax.
Transportation is an equity and an environmental issue.
Our current system is built to fail: Drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians are all pitted against one another, and public transportation users face fare hikes and constantly broken trains. We’ve created a system where Bostonians struggle to get around on time and our most vulnerable residents are excluded. And all the while, we are failing to cut our carbon emissions.
My vision for the city incorporates public and alternative methods of transportation into our infrastructure. I support constructing a system of city-wide separated bike lanes to ensure the safety of our bikers and remove competition for our roadways. I also support implementing dedicated bus lanes throughout the city. As City Councillor, I will use my platform to advocate at the state level for increased funding for the MBTA, and I will strongly oppose fare increases.
Let’s create a city in which public transportation, cycling, and walking are genuine alternatives to driving, whether for work or leisure. The MBTA is Boston’s central nervous system, and we must invest in its safe and reliable operation.