CHS Volleyball Team Takes a Knee at National Anthem:Players say they Kneel for a Fair and Equal Society for All

CHS Volleyball Team Takes a Knee at National Anthem:Players say they Kneel for a Fair and Equal Society for All

By Seth Daniel

The Chelsea High Volleyball team takes a knee during the National Anthem on Tuesday afternoon, Oct. 3, in a game at home against Notre Dame, who chose to stand and salute the flag. The girls, including (L-R) Arianna Pryor, Xiana Herasme, Masireh Ceesay and Guidairys Castro, plan to continue taking the knee all season to highlight inequities the lives of minority youth and immigrants. One school in Methuen has asked that they do not come and take a knee at their venue, choosing to forfeit the game instead.

The Chelsea High Volleyball team takes a knee during the National Anthem on Tuesday afternoon, Oct. 3, in a game at home against Notre Dame, who chose to stand and salute the flag. The girls, including (L-R) Arianna Pryor, Xiana Herasme, Masireh Ceesay and Guidairys Castro, plan to continue taking the knee all season to highlight inequities the lives of minority youth and immigrants. One school in Methuen has asked that they do not come and take a knee at their venue, choosing to forfeit the game instead.

The Chelsea High School girls’ volleyball team – a team loaded with seven seniors – has been together for several years and so it is that they’ve developed a family-like bond and a chemistry that sometimes helps them to act in unison.

It’s almost telepathic, they say.

In fact, when they first decided to take a knee during the National Anthem to make a statement on Tuesday, Sept. 19, at Whittier Tech, it was something they didn’t rehearse or plan in advance.

It just happened, and now it has happened two other times and – like other National Anthem protests – is sparking a robust conversation in Chelsea High, outside in Chelsea and even into the other cities and towns where they play.

All 11 players on the team are now taking the knee and did so as recently as this past Tuesday afternoon at Chelsea High.

“When it happened first, it wasn’t planned and it was just spontaneous and we all went down,” said Arianna Pryor, who pointed out that they took the knee before it became something much greater with the NFL protest on Sept. 24. “We gave each other the look and then it happened. It was just a natural thing. We had talked about it, but never planned on doing it. It was almost like mental telepathy.”

Leaders of the team say they are all taking the knee for several different reasons – whether it be for immigration issues, discrimination, economic opportunity, or better resources – but in general they seem to want to draw attention to the fact that they don’t see the country as being “free” or all of created “equal.”

“For me, a majority of us have immigrant parents and they came to the country to provide a better future for us,” said Rym El Mahid, a first-year player. “. What kind of American Dream is there if things are working against our parents all the time?”

Ruchellie Jimenez said she also takes the knee because she has seen how others are treated, how people treat her. She wants that to change, and this was one way to draw attention to her cause.

“I don’t think it’s fair how we have systematic forces against us and are always in the backseat of America,” she said. “We struggle and get the scraps of everyone else. My parents were immigrants and I see the way they are treated and the way I am treated. That’s why I take the knee. It isn’t fair.”

She added, as an example, that she recently wanted to improve her SAT score and went to a counselor outside Chelsea for help.

“I was sitting with the counselor and they looked at my score and said I was a minority and from a low-income area, so I was all set; there was not need for me to try to get better,” she said. “That’s not how I want to be treated. I just want to do better on my SAT.”

Pryor said others have been taking a knee to make a difference, and she saw that and brought it up to the rest of her team. They had talked about it, but made no plans. As time went on, she said she wanted to be one to make things known, to let people know that things are not right.

“I take a knee because I want to be there with the others that are trying to make a difference,” she said. “I take a knee because things need to change.”

All agreed that they don’t mean disrespect to any soldiers, and are grateful for the service of veterans – those who have died and who have returned injured. They said, however, they picked the National Anthem because it was a non-violent and because it was one of the few outlets they had as high school athletes.

“Our team is very ethnically diverse and culturally diverse,” said Capt. Jessica Martinez. “We feel strongly about how our country has been going, and we wanted to make our point in a way that wouldn’t seem violent or aggressive, but rather intelligent. We wanted to do something that showed we took a lot of time thinking out our actions.”

She added that if they had made their protest at City Hall or another public venue, it could have taken a violent course – which they didn’t want.

Added Jimenez, “We’re very grateful for what the veterans have done and they have given us freedom of speech to take the knee. I don’t think there is any other way for us to do this publicly. Everyone knows what taking a knee is.”

At school, it’s been a mixed reaction.

A lot of students don’t agree with it, they said, while others are wholeheartedly behind them.

Already, last Friday, the Chelsea High cheerleaders took a knee before the home football game.

Coach Serena Wadsworth said when it became obvious how her girls felt about taking the knee, and that they planned to do so the rest of the year, she sent out a letter to other schools. Most, she said, understood, but one school in Methuen preferred that the girls not come to their school and take a knee. The school indicated it didn’t feel it respected its school values. They were willing to forfeit the game, and also were willing to play at Chelsea.

Interestingly, the girls said their message isn’t really for those in Chelsea as much as it is for the other schools they play, many of which aren’t as diverse or understand the life that they lead.

“Our message isn’t really to be taken to only those who are doing the discrimination,” said El Mahid. “People who aren’t minority – the white and well off – don’t know the discrimination we face. It’s a way to get the discrimination out there.”

When the 2017  Chelsea High volleyball team is remembered, all of them agreed that it will probably be for their stand. They hope that it helps people think about what they did, and perhaps is something that’s continued.

“There are other teams and other seasons,” said Masireh Ceesay. “They will see what we did and see it as an example, I hope, and carry it on and find ways to go forward with our statement.”

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The Movement is Growing:Councillors Vidot, Rodriguez Lead Popular League

The Movement is Growing:Councillors Vidot, Rodriguez Lead Popular League

By Cary Shuman

Damali Vidot.

Damali Vidot.

Damali Vidot, popular councillor-at-large, knows from first hand experience the trouble that Chelsea youths can encounter in their formative years

“As someone who used to get in to trouble and who lost a friend a few days ago that I met when I used to get in to trouble, I know the importance of being there for these young people – just to have someone that they can count on to lead them in the right direction.”

That’s one of the reasons that the 39-year-old Vidot, along with City Councillor Yamir Rodriguez, Danny Mojica, and Isidra Quinones, founded The Movement, a summertime youth basketball league. The league held its playoffs and season-ending pizza party Saturday at Highland Park.

“The Movement was born out of some shootings that were happening in the community and we wanted to provide an outlet for kids 13-20 because I feel that’s an age that really doesn’t have enough supportive services that we wanted to engage them in during the summer,” said Vidot.

The Movement has grown to close to 100 youths who participate in the outdoor basketball league Wednesdays and Saturdays at Highland Park across from the Jordan Boys and Girls Club.

The mood was festive as the basketball players were united in spirit and celebrating the league’s second successful season. Police officers Keith Sweeney and David Batchelor Jr. were on hand to coach a team and affirm the support of Chelsea’s finest.

Vidot understands The Movement is only in touch with its players a few hours a week on the basketball court and that the players must take responsibility for their actions beyond the court.

“Even though we’re with them a limited number of hours during the week, I’m hoping it sets the tone for the rest of the week and they remember that there are grown-ups out there that actually care,” said Vidot.

Betsy Vicente, mother of 14-year-old, 6-foot-2-inch aspiring basketball player Christian Rios, said her son likes the competition and atmosphere of The Movement.

“He loves it. My son absolutely adores coming here. He looks forward to playing here every weekend and hanging out with his friends.”

Vicente said The Movement is like “a second family.”

“This is his neighborhood family,” said Vicente.  The kids feel safe and the league is bringing them together in a good environment.”

As for rising community leaders Damali Vidot, Jamir Rodriguez, Vicente said what many at the Highland Park basketball courts were thinking, “The leaders of The Movement are doing a phenomenal job. I like the new Chelsea.”

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Ambrosino asks Council for $230K More for Highland Park

Ambrosino asks Council for $230K More for Highland Park

By Seth Daniel

The extensive improvements to Highland Park’s basketball courts and playground are now being expanded to include lighting improvements and a rehabilitation of the parking lot – at an extra cost of $230,000.

City Manager Tom Ambrosino broke the news to the City Council on Monday night, June 5, and told the Council that the scope of work needed to be expanded.

While the original work included just refurbishing the basketball courts, playground and sitting areas at Highland, once the City’s Planning Department began designing the improvements, they realized there was a desperate need to make additional improvements.

“As the City began to look more carefully at this park during the design phase, it determined that the parking lot area was likewise in desperate need of repair,” he wrote. “

The lighting fixtures were outdated and the irrigation system was not working.

The added improvements include paving the lot, replacement of the perimeter irrigation system, landscaping, an putting in modern lighting to illuminate the area more effectively. He also suggested installing new lighting on the Willow Street side of the park to help illuminate that busy area as well by the Jordan Boys & Girls Club and the Al Huda Society Mosque.

In the original scope, the City received a state grant for $400,000 and contributed $170,000 to the project through the City Capital Improvement Plan.

He called for the Council to tap into the $34 million Free Cash fund.

The full expenditure will now be $800,000.

The Council filed the request and will take it up for a second reading at Monday’s meeting.

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Salazar,Flores are Top Students in Chelsea High School Class of 2017

Salazar,Flores are Top Students in Chelsea High School Class of 2017

By Seth Daniel

Valedictorian Ashley Salazar (left) stands beside Salutatorian Tracey Flores at Chelsea High School this week. The duo will lead the Class of 2017 into Graduation Exercises on Sunday, June 11, at the high school.

Valedictorian Ashley Salazar (left) stands beside Salutatorian Tracey Flores at Chelsea High School this week. The duo will lead the Class of 2017 into Graduation Exercises on Sunday, June 11, at the high school.

Both Ashley Salazar and Tracey Flores have become accustomed to being side by side – starting out together in kindergarten at the Early Learning Center (ELC) and finishing up neck and neck for the top two spots in the class at Chelsea High School (CHS).

On Monday, June 5, CHS revealed that Salazar was the Valedictorian and Flores was the Salutatorian of the Class of 2017, sending a shock to both girls who didn’t expect the honors. “I was completely shocked,” said Salazar. “My parents were sobbing.”

Salazar, 17, went to elementary at the Kelly School and then to the Wright Middle School before coming to CHS. In the fall, she said she will be attending Cornell University in Ithaca, NY to study food sciences.

“My sister is a nutritionist at the MGH so I always had that as an influence in my life,” she said. “Growing up in Chelsea, I was always known as a health freak to everyone. I’m the one who checks all the nutrition information labels and tells people we shouldn’t be eating these things. I knew I wanted to do something around food. I also knew I wanted to do something in high school that involved the sciences. I decided I should just combine the two.”

Salazar said she was first introduced to Cornell though a program called Newton Scholars that she participated in early in her high school years. However, her main inspiration was teacher Matthew LaBranch, who taught her to be authentic. She said he teaches desktop publishing at CHS, which she has no interest in, but the character lesson was the thing that stuck with her.

“He taught a subject I’m not interested in , but he always preached to us about being your real authentic self. He made me realize that we control our own destinies. I needed to hear that because I’m reserved. When you hear that message in the back of your head it helps you to keep going and take more risks.”

Salazar, 17, said she wasn’t able to participate in extra-curricular activities because she was busy taking care of extended family at her home.

She said she was worried that would hurt her college process and acceptance, but after explaining her situation, it wasn’t held against her.

“It all worked out,” she said.

Flores, also 17, said she has worked really hard to be second in the class, and credited others with giving her the confidence to work harder so that she can achieve the success.

“I was always very quiet and I”m not confident in my intelligence at all,” she said. “Mr. (Wes) Peacock taught me to believe in myself and have confidence…My mom was very proud. She sees me stay up late and doing my homework. I don’t have the natural talent for academics, so I try to work even harder. I put in the time and worked really hard for this.”

Flores plans to attend Tufts University this fall, and will major in biochemistry with the idea of becoming a doctor. She said her two siblings have autism, so growing up she was always going to appointments with them. Then, two years ago, her father passed away. That was followed by her mother developing cancer, which was caught early and eliminated.

Those experiences, she said, gave her an appreciation for those in the medical field, and impressed upon her to go in that direction.

“I don’t want anyone to have to watch someone die of cancer,” she said. “I wanted to do something with my life that makes a difference for others so that they don’t go through what I went through.”

She also credited Teacher Ilana Asher with influencing her at CHS.

“She’s like my high school mom,” she said. “She helped me with the college application process  and my essays. I don’t know where I’d be without her.”

Flores participated in the Mock Trial, Girls Track, the ALS Walk, InterAct, National Honor Society and Girls 101.

Salazar is the daughter of Julio and Giselle Salazar.

Flores is the daughter Ruth Flores and the late Carlos Flores.

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Sports 05-25-2017

Sports 05-25-2017

CHS Roundup

CHS girls capture CAC track title; Martine Simon is named meet MVP

The Chelsea High girls track team scored a dominating 154 points — a total that was more than the second (Essex Tech with 97 points) and third-place (Shawsheen Tech with 54 points) schools combined — to capture the 2017 championship of the Commonwealth Athletic Conference in a meet held Saturday at Shawsheen Tech.

Martine Simon was named the Meet MVP in recognition of her three CAC title-winning performances in the 100 meter dash (12.96), 200 dash (26.72), and the long jump (15’-10”). In addition, Martine took third in the triple jump with a distance of 33’-5”.

To put her feat into perspective, Martine’s total of 36 points for the Lady Red Devils was more than what half the other teams at the meet scored.

Senior Sylvia Agywaa was another standout for Chelsea. Sylvia took first in both the high hurdles (16.20, a new meet and CHS school record) and the low hurdles (1:11.86).

“Sylvia has had an amazing season and is getting stronger heading into next week’s state meet,” said CHS head coach Mark Martineau.

Sophomore  Amanda Dias continued her winning ways, taking first place in the two mile and adding a third in the one mile for 16 points.

Fellow sophomore Jocelyn Poste enjoyed a fine day, taking second places in the 800 (2:36.39) and the 400 hurdles (1:13.19) to post 16 points in the Chelsea column.

Senior Owliyo Mohamud took second in the 400 in a personal record (PR) time of 1:01.48 and third in the 200m (27.75).  Freshman Stephanie Simon also turned in a splendid day, grabbing second in the high jump with a PR leap of 5’-0”.

The throwing events continued to be a strength for Chelsea. The Lady Red Devils took second, third, and fourth places in the shotput, led by Alex Martinez and Michena Eugene.

Chelsea also grabbed three places in the discus with Masireh Ceesay taking second (87’-7”), Tracy Flores third (81’-0”), and Jessica Martinez fifth (77’-2”).

“This was a great way to cap off a record-setting season for this girls’ squad,” said Martineau. “This is an amazing and special group of girls.  Graduation will hit us hard on the track and in terms of leadership.  We will be looking for new girls to step up and continue the winning ways.”

The 2017 crown mark the second straight CAC Meet title and the third straight undefeated duial-meet season for the CHS girls.

“The graduating seniors will have finished their career with a record of 40 wins, one loss, and one tie,” added Martineau. “Not bad for four years of work.”

CHS boys take  second at CAC; LeClerc named MVP

The Chelsea High boys track & field team turned in a superb performance, scoring 78 points to place second, behind only Shawsheen Tech, at Saturday’s Commonwealth Athletic Conference championship meet.

“This was an amazing day,” said CHS head coach Mark Matineau.  “What makes this accomplishment really amazing is the fact that we only had 12 individual boys compete at this meet.”

Leading the way of Chelsea was league MVP Jose Leclerc, who won a tough double, taking the two-mile (10:45) as well as the 800 (2:09).

“Jose has been undefeated in both events this year and had to be really focused and disciplined to pull off the tough double in a big meet like this one,” said Martineau.

Adriel Cedano also had a big day, winning the 400m (52.53) and finishing second in the triple jump with a new CHS school record jump of 41’-4”.  The old record had stood since 1973.

Nick Ieng had a big points-day, finishing fourth in the 100 (11.6), third in the shotput, third in the javelin, and fourth in the 200m.

“Nick’s performance sums up the story of this team — kids working really hard, competing in multiple events, and leaving it all out on the track,” noted Martineau. “I can honestly say that this is one of the toughest squads ever to come through our program.  They refuse to quit or give in.  Like the girls, the boys will graduate much of their leadership and points.  We have a strong young distance core that is progressing well, we will need to fill some sprints and jumps to round out this team.”

This Saturday the girls and boys travel to the MIAA D2 state championships at Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational Technical High School.

“With 10 girls and six boys going, this looks to be the biggest squad we have ever brought,” said Martineau.

CHS baseball team  ready to wrap up 2017

The Chelsea High baseball team was set to conclude its 2017 campaign this week. Coach Alan Beausoleil’s Red Devils were scheduled to play at Essex Tech this past Tuesday and will play their season finale today (Thursday) against Whittier Tech at Carter Park.

The CHS squad dropped both of its contests this past week, falling to Greater Lawrence, 10-0, and to St. Clement’s, 11-5.

In the latter contest, Luis Jimenez had a hit, stole three bases, and scored a run. Andrew Falcon banged a double for an RBI and drew a base-on-balls.

Chelsea had closed to within 7-5 by the middle of the sixth inning, but St. Clem’s pulled away with four markers in the bottom of the sixth.

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Giving Back for Back to School, One Haircut at a Time

By Seth Daniel

Luis Rodriguez of Blade Masters on Everett Avenue gives a free haircut to Adin Bahan during a special event at the Boys & Girls Club on Monday. Rodriguez and Councillors Yamir Rodriguez and Damali Vidot worked together to start the event this year and hope to make the free haircut day a fixture of Back to School in Chelsea.

Luis Rodriguez of Blade Masters on Everett Avenue gives a free haircut to Adin Bahan during a special event at the Boys & Girls Club on Monday. Rodriguez and Councillors Yamir Rodriguez and Damali Vidot worked together to start the event this year and hope to make the free haircut day a fixture of Back to School in Chelsea.

The costs of getting kids back to school is a tough bill to pay for parents, and many parents are in situations where they cannot afford all the things that kids need.

In those times, they must pick and choose what kids go back with on their first day.

And often, when it comes down to new shoes or a haircut, the sneaks win out most years.

This year, though, many parents didn’t have to worry about that decision as five local barbers corralled by Luis Rodriguez of Blade Masters, and organized by City Councillors Yamir Rodriguez and Damali Vidot, set up shop in the gym of the Boys & Girls Club on Monday for many hours and gave free haircuts to Chelsea kids just before the first day of school, kids who might otherwise go back to school not looking their very best.

“When I was going to school here in Chelsea, I didn’t have much money for a haircut, so I know what it feels like on the first day of school,” said Luis Rodriguez of Blade Masters on Everett Avenue, a 2015 Chelsea High School graduate. “I’m licensed and I can do this and I wanted to give back to these kids and to the community. I know how they feel and it feels good that I can give back by giving free haircuts. It can be tough for parents in Chelsea to pay for everything. This is one less thing, and I’m glad I can do it.”

Councillor Rodriguez said Luis Rodriguez had been a student at Chelsea High School when he was coaching on the basketball team. The two got to know each other well back then, and last spring, Luis Rodriguez said he wanted to do free haircuts.

“He wanted to give back somehow and had this idea to give free haircuts before school started,” said Councillor Rodriguez. “I told him it was a great idea and we got on the phone and got a couple of barbers to join us and help out. We always talked about helping out in the city and this was one very good way…It’s something Luis can do and it’s something that we know some kids cannot afford.”

On Monday, at least four, sometimes five, barbers were hard at work in the gym cutting hair for one kid after another. All of the barbers were local and said they were really glad to give back to the community and remembered going back to school every year with a fresh haircut on the first day.

Councillor Damali Vidot said it’s something that a lot of people don’t think about, but something that really helps parents who are trying to get kids ready for school.

“This is something we know helps the kids and these barbers wanted to give back and they’re all from Chelsea,” she said. “This is a great opportunity for everyone.”

Councillor Rodriguez said next year they will continue the effort and perhaps do more advance planning to make it a bigger event and to help more people.

“We do plan on making it a yearly event and next year we’ll make it bigger and maybe try to tie it to the Williams School celebration,” he said.

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Obituaries 07-21-2016

John Magazzu

Lifelong Chelsea resident

John R. Magazzu, a lifelong resident of Chelsea, passed away Monday morning, July 18 at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. He was 80 years old.

Born in Chelsea, the son of the late Domenick and Loretta (DeFloria) Magazzu, throughout his working career John owned several dry cleaning stores within the local Chelsea and Everett area. He retired in the early 1990’s following his son’s illness. John enjoyed his retirement by socializing and visiting with friends for coffee and good company. He was a car enthusiast, helping his friends and relatives with registry paperwork, purchasing vehicles and car maintenance and detailing. He will be sadly missed by all who loved him.

John was the husband of the late Lorraine M. (Savignano) Magazzu, father of the late John D. Magazzu and dear friend of Lisa Santarpio and her daughter, Alycia Santarpio, both of Chelsea. He is also lovingly survived by many cousins and friends.

Funeral services will be conducted in the Carafa Family Funeral Home 389 Washington Ave. Chelsea on Friday, July 22 at 11 a.m. Visiting hours will precede the service from 9 to 11 a.m. Relatives and friends are kindly invited to attend. Entombment will follow the service in the Sheffield Mausoleum Woodlawn Cemetery in Everett.
In lieu of flowers, donations in John’s memory may be made to: American Cancer Society, P.O. Box 22478
Oklahoma City, OK 73123 or on-line at: www.cancer.org

Marie O’Regan

Former Blinstrub’s waitress and coach of St. Rose Girls Basketball Team in the 50’s

Marie E. (Fay) O’Regan passed away Thursday afternoon, July 14, while receiving supportive care at the Lighthouse Nursing Care Center in Revere after a recent decline in health resulting from a mild stroke she suffered several weeks earlier. She was 91 years old.

Born in Cambridge, the daughter of the late John A. and Mildred L. (Hayes) Fay, she was raised in Chelsea and attended St. Rose parochial and high schools. She was married to Harold J. O’Regan and together they made their home in Everett where Marie has resided for the past 55 years.

Marie worked as a waitress for many years at Blinstrub’s serving some of Boston’s famous and infamous citizens. In the mid 1950’s Marie returned to her alma mater coaching the St Rose Girls Basketball team. She was widowed in 1973 with the passing of her beloved husband. Marie retired and remained at home caring for her mother and raising her young son. A strong and nurturing soul, she is remembered as always being there, caring for family and friends alike.

In addition to her parents and husband, Marie was also preceded in death by three brothers: the late John E. Fay, William F. Fay and Robert C. Fay. She is survived by her devoted son and daughter in law, John F. Browning and his wife, Michelle of Everett. She was the cherished grandmother of Gianna Browning; dear sister of Nancy J. Glennon of Amherst NH, Albert J. Fay of Peabody, Donna J. Girard of Wareham and is also survived by many loving nieces and nephews.
Funeral arrangements were by the Frank A. Welsh & Sons Funeral Home, Chelsea. Interment was at Woodlawn Cemetery, Everett.

John Francis Morton

Retired Chelsea City Yard Foreman, third longest active member of

Chelsea City Square Association

John Francis Morton passed away Tuesday, July 12 at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston after a short decline in health and advanced age. He was 91 years old.

Born and raised in Chelsea, he was one of five children born to the late John W. Morton and Anastasia E. (Dunn) Morton. John began his schooling at the Shurtleff School in Chelsea and later graduated from Chelsea High School. He enlisted in the US Navy during World War II, was honorably discharged in 1946 and returned to Chelsea. He was employed for many years with the City of Chelsea D.P.W. where he held the position of City Yard Foreman. He retired many years ago. He was a lifelong parishioner and communicant at St. Rose Church in Chelsea where he volunteered for many years as a weekly church usher. John was a member of the Cary Square Assoc. in Chelsea where he was the third longest active member and the oldest non-charter member of the club. John also frequently worked as club bartender. In addition to his beloved parents, John was also preceded in death by his siblings; Joseph W., Edward E. and Lawrence G. Morton and Gladys M. Cappiello. He is survived by several nieces and nephews and by many more grand and great-grand nieces and nephews.
In keeping with John’s wishes and desires, funeral services were strictly private. Friends are encouraged to remember John in their own private ways. Arrangements were entrusted to the Frank A. Welsh & Sons Funeral Home, Chelsea.

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Chelsea Collaborative Celebrates Unveiling of Workers Rights Mural

On May 31st, members of the Chelsea Collaborative, Chelsea city councilors, workers rights activists and Chelsea Community members gathered for the unveiling of the Chelsea Collaborative’s new workers rights mural. The mural creator, artist Nancy Guevara met with members of the Chelsea Latino Immigrant Committee an Environmental Chelsea Organizers a several times over the past few months to create the design for the mural.

The mural is part of a statewide education campaign to bring more awareness to the worker’s rights violations that immigrant workers face throughout Massachusetts. Organizations like the Collaborative, have long been fighting issues of wage theft, especially in industries with a high level of subcontracting, where cleaning, construction and

Artist Nancy Guevara speaks during the unveiling of the Worker’s Rights mural at the Collaborative on May 31.

Artist Nancy Guevara speaks during the unveiling
of the Worker’s Rights mural at the Collaborative on May 31.

painting workers often see their wages and overtime stolen by predatory subcontractors.

Currently, a coalition made up of local unions, workers centers like the Collaborative, and the Boston-based organization Community Labor United is pushing a bill that would further protect sub-contracted immigrant workers. Representative Dan Ryan and Senator Sal DiDomenico, who is the co-sponsor of the bill, both attended the mural unveiling and spoke about the importance of continuing to fight for the rights of immigrant workers. At noon on Thursday June 23rd, workers, union members and other supporters of the bill will gather for a Wage Theft Speakout on the steps of the State House to call on their Senators and Representatives to pass the bill. For more information and the action and the problem of wage theft, check out www.StopMassWageTheft.org.

The mural also seeks to highlight the strength workers find through culture, community unity and organizing and features figures modeled after active members of the Chelsea Latino Immigrant Committee and Somali Bantu Girls Group. As artist Nancy Guevara wrote in the inscription accompanying the mural, “This mural celebrates the different cultures found in this city and our shared commitment to hard work and a passion for justice. Together, we weave our future, our battle giving us the strength to fight and move on. We need fairly paid and dignified work in order to realize and inherit our dreams. We came to this country to live the American dream, but we have realized it was not for us, but with the strands of our battle, our collective voices amplified and the power of our love and effort, we continue to demand the right to dream.”

Anyone interested in taking a look at the worker’s rights mural, should feel free to visit the Collaborative anytime between 10 and 5pm. The mural is meant to be an inspiration for all in our community to keep on fighting for a more just and equitable city where all workers and community members are treated with respect and dignity.

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Hair Cuttery Holds Cut-A-Thon to Benefit Jordan Boys & Girls Club in Chelsea

Hair Cuttery at 1086 Revere Beach Parkway in Chelsea will host a cut-a-thon on Sunday, March 6th from 6:00 – 9:00pm to benefit the Jordan Boys and Girls Club. All haircuts will be $10.00 with 100% of the proceeds going to the club.

The Jordan Boys and Girls Club helps young people, especially those in need, build strong characters and realize their full potential as responsible citizens and leaders. The cut-a-thon will benefit the Boys and Girls Club’s many programs which support the youth in the Chelsea community.

“We are thrilled to be working with the Jordan Boys and Girls Club to help raise funds for their clubhouse,” said Lydia Son, Hair Cuttery Salon Leader. “It’s so wonderful when we can come together as a community and support such a worthy organization.”

Hair Cuttery has an established history of charitable giving, supporting a range of local and national causes, including St. Baldrick’s Foundation, American Red Cross, The National Network to End Domestic Violence, American Cancer Society, Susan G. Komen for the Cure and Girls on the Run.

About Hair Cuttery:

Hair Cuttery is the largest family-owned and operated chain of hair salons in the country, with nearly 900 company-owned locations on the East Coast, New England and the Midwest. A full-service, value-priced salon, Hair Cuttery offers a full complement of cuts and styling, coloring, waxing and texturizing services with no appointment necessary, as well as a full line of professional hair care products. Hair Cuttery is committed to delivering a delightful client experience through WOW Service including a Smile Back Guarantee. Hair Cuttery is a division of Ratner Companies, based in Vienna, VA. www.haircuttery.com

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Girl Scout Parade,Memorial Day Ceremonies Step Off Mon. Morning

Girl Scout Parade,Memorial Day Ceremonies Step Off Mon. Morning

The annual Chelsea Girl Scout Parade and Memorial Day Exercises will take place in that order for the fourth straight year, with even more scouts and organizations expected to march in the parade – which is meant to honor veterans and enhance the official exercises at City Hall.

The parade will began around 8:15 a.m. and start at Welch’s Funeral Home parking lot.

The route will proceed down to City Hall, where the official exercises will kick off at the war memorials.

The Chelsea Girl Scouts have grown exponentially over the last few years, and have become a strong supporter of Memorial Day. Acting with local veterans groups, they have been organizing the parade on their own for many months.

“It bears reiterating that none of it would have been possible without the support from our community: The Chelsea Community Fund grant has gone a long way to helping us expose our Girls to the arts,” said Susana Carella of the busy year the troops have had. “TND was instrumental in allowing us to host our first Mother-Daughter Paint Club event on Mother’s Day weekend. We’ve been fortunate to receive generous donations from Zonta Club, Tito’s Bakery and numerous individuals who have contributed supplies and time to our events. Add to that the tireless dedication of the volunteers who donate time, and often money, to leading their troops and it all adds up to an unparalleled community effort. The Girl Scouts Chelsea Memorial Day Parade is the perfect time to unite all those organizations that work in unison to create the sense of community that distinguishes Chelsea from so many other cities. It is our sincere hope that as many of those organizations as possible will come out and march with us.”

Longtime Girl Scout organizer Elaine Cusick said this year will be particularly special as the Scouts will officially welcome the new veterans at the North Bellingham Veterans Home adjacent to City Hall.

“The Girl Scouts are looking forward to hosting another Memorial Day parade,” said Cusick. “It’s especially moving considering that the newly opened veterans’ residential center – the one located in the old American Legion Hall – will have front row seats to the event. It’s a nice welcome to the community for them. Also, for quite some time, Donnie Kingsbury from the Veteran’s Council has helped the girls practice their marching and formation skills.”

The official exercises will begin shortly after the parade contingent arrives at City Hall.

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