Our community is facing tough challenges. We are living through the worst economic crisis in a generation. At the same time, our neighborhoods have seen a resurgence of street violence. And as our families struggle to make ends meet, many of us are being forced to make some difficult choices. For some, it’s the choice between paying for prescriptions or child care. For others, it’s the choice between paying the rent or utilities.
The challenges we face now are part of a much longer history of violence and economic insecurity that has plagued our communities. It is a history with which I am deeply and personally familiar. As the former Constituent Services Director for City Councilor Chuck Turner, I was the first point of contact for constituents struggling with joblessness, foreclosures, and violence in their neighborhoods. I interacted with mothers whose sons were victims of violence and mothers whose sons were the perpetrators. I learned to understand the issue of violence from both sides. My experience with issues surrounding violence in our neighborhoods extends beyond my work and my activism.
Growing up in the communities of Dorchester and Mattapan, I witnessed firsthand the causes and consequences of street violence. Death for me, unfortunately, was an everyday reality. That’s why I, too, turned to the streets for protection. Eventually, the consequences of my actions caught up with me and, at age 21, I was incarcerated for a year. I decided to turn my life around and give back to the community.
I understand the struggles our community faces, because I have lived through those struggles. And through my advocacy, I have been able to apply my life lessons to others facing similar challenges. And if elected state representative, I will fight to move this community forward by bringing people together to tackle these tough issues.
For too long Beacon Hill has ignored our communities’ potential and needs. I am asking for your vote on Tues., Sept. 14, to bring the community to Beacon Hill. Together, we can fight to move our communities forward.
For more information about our campaign, please visit darrinhowell.com.