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Celebration of five centenarians, all “young at heart”

According to Ellen Gordon, director of resident life at Kaplan, it was the biggest celebration of 100-year-old residents to date in the assisted living community run by the non-profit Chelsea Jewish Lifecare. She said the five people, who participate in daily recreational and social activities, are proof that the aging process can be a process of grace, dignity and humor.

“Each of them has something to teach us,” she said. “They are wonderful.”

At the party, guests of honor were seated at a circular table in the center of the room, surrounded by around 35 of their fellow citizens and staff. Each winner wore a special pin and either a tiara or a bow tie because, as Gordon said, “You are always ladies and gentlemen. “

Left to right: Thelma Taylor, 100, Marty Lawson, 101, and Leon Ditchek, 101. They are all members of the Century Club.
Suzanne Kreiter / Globe Staff

As guests enjoyed appetizers and a birthday cake, Gordon paid tribute to each winner: Taylor for her social commitment and daily exercise; Lawson for appreciating each generation, including the children he volunteered with at the on-site preschool before the pandemic; Ditchek for keeping up to date with the news while retaining his signature sense of humor; Morocco for giving back through volunteering; and Regis to live on his own terms.

Gordon then toasted champagne and sparkling apple cider. As the room filled with neighbors, friends and caregivers raised their glasses, she said, “God bless you and let all of us in this room take lessons from five of them on how to live well our life. life. Yours!”

Between kudos from his supporters, Ditchek said he was as surprised as anyone when he turned 101 on February 28. A native of New York and a World War II veteran, he moved to Kaplan Estates several years ago to be closer to his family in Ipswich.

“I lived on my own and didn’t eat very well,” said Ditchek, who enthusiastically maintained his habit of watching CNN in the assisted living facility. “All the food here is very good.”

In fact, Ditchek has said he’s especially happy to celebrate alongside Lawson, with whom he eats all three meals.

“Marty is a good man,” said Ditchek. “I am honored to be by his side.

“And I’m honored to be here with him,” said Lawson, a retired businessman who turned 101 on Nov. 9. “I never dreamed that I would be 100 years old. I thought 75 would be my limit. I think it’s very appropriate to draw attention to people who have turned 100 and over. ‘appreciate.

Taylor, who turned 100 on March 10, worked in retail and office administration until the age of 85. At Kaplan Estates, she enjoys all daily activities including arts and crafts, current events, and exercise classes.

“I’m lucky. It’s nice to be around people and keep busy, especially at this age,” she said.

“It’s wonderful to come together and see so many of us still active,” added Morrocco, a retired accountant and avid ballroom dancer turned card shark who celebrated her 101st birthday on August 10. The year before, her friends from the Peabody Senior Center, where she volunteered for nearly 30 years, arrived in a van adorned with a photo of Morocco to celebrate with her at Kaplan Estates.

Asked about her secret to longevity, the Moroccan replied: “Good Italian genes!

“You can either do something or sit down. I’d rather have a homework assignment, ”she added, joking that a kid 100“ sounded like 1000. And now I’m so old. Older, in fact!

Marblehead pianist Bill Sokolow closed the party with a performance of “Young at Heart,” after which he drew laughs and cheers for congratulating Regis on passing his age in the lyrics to the song “What if you had to survive until 105 / Look at all you ‘I’ll shoot from being alive.

“You beat the song by two years!” He said to a smiling Regis.

As the winners accepted balloons and plants to take back to their apartments, Morocco took one last look around.

“The party was amazing,” she said. “I am very grateful that I had this time to take advantage of it.”

Cindy Cantrell can be reached at [email protected].

Thelma Tayor, 100, tasted sparkling cider during the party.
Thelma Tayor, 100, tasted sparkling cider during the party. Suzanne Kreiter / Globe Staff
Kay Morrocco, 101, helps Rose Regis, 107, with her badge.  While there are differing opinions on why Century Club members live such long and independent lives, there is general agreement that they are proof that the aging process can be a process of aging. dignity, joy and humor.
Kay Morrocco, 101, helps Rose Regis, 107, with her badge. While there are differing opinions on why Century Club members live such long and independent lives, there is general agreement that they are proof that the aging process can be a process of aging. dignity, joy and humor.

Suzanne Kreiter / Globe Staff


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These rock stars to perform Lou Reed and Sex Pistols albums at concert to benefit mental health – Daily News

Since 2018, Jane’s Addiction guitarist Dave Navarro and Billy Idol guitarist Billy Morrison have joined forces to host an annual celebrity concert that raises funds for the nonprofit MusiCares to benefit mental health treatment.

The show, dubbed Above Ground, did not take place in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but will resume for its third installment on Monday, December 20 at the Fonda Theater in Los Angeles. It will feature a host of special guest musicians including Corey Taylor, Slipknot frontman, Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins, Sugar Ray’s Mark McGrath, Jane’s Addiction Perry Farrell, singer Etty Lau Farrell, Idol rocker. and guitarist Steve Stevens and more.

“I missed it last year, because Billy and I fell in love with the cause, with the mission statement; we fell in love with the job and all the things that are needed to make this show happen, ”Navarro said in an interview with Zoom.

“It’s actually quite a different experience from our day jobs,” Morrison added on the same video call. “This kind of show is so different in terms of production, and when Dave said we fell in love with the job, it’s because he doesn’t show up and play ‘Jane Says’ or ‘Rebel Yell’ . We can do it with our eyes closed, but we really have to work on this show. “

  • Jane’s Addiction guitarist Dave Navarro (left), Ministry’s guitarist Al Jourgensen and Billy Idol Billy Morrison perform at the Above Ground benefit party for MusiCares at the Fonda Theater in Los Angeles in 2019 (Photo by Jim Donnelly)

  • Jane’s Addiction guitarist Dave Navarro (left) performs with singer Juliette Lewis during the Above Ground benefit concert for MusiCares at the Fonda Theater in Los Angeles in 2019 (Photo by Jim Donnelly)

  • Jane’s Addiction guitarist Dave Navarro (left) performs with Tenacious D frontman and actor Jack Black to benefit Above Ground for MusiCares at the Fonda Theater in Los Angeles in 2019 (Photo by Jim Donnelly)

  • Each year, Jane’s Addiciton guitarist Dave Navarro (left) and Billy Idol guitarist Billy Morrison host Above Ground, a star-studded benefit concert that raises awareness and raises funds for mental health for MusiCares. This year’s event will take place on Monday, December 20 at the Fonda Theater in Los Angeles.

Faithful to the tradition of choosing influential two-act musical releases – an American act and a British one – for the evening, the performers will cover all the songs in order from Lou Reed’s 1972 album “Transformer” and the Release of the Sex Pistols in 1977. “Don’t forget the bullshit, here are the Sex Pistols. “

In 2018, artists from the “Above Ground” lineup performed 1980s “Kings of the Wild Frontier” by Adam and the Ants and the eponymous 1967 album by The Velvet Underground and Nico. In 2019, they took on David Bowie’s 1972 “The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars” and the 1969 Stooge’s self-titled debut album.

“Every year we have to dive deep into these records and find parts that we maybe a little overlooked or missed when we just listened to them and we really dissect them and kind of go into the songs and doing that process is rewarding. , frustrating, distressing, ”said Navarro.

“And scary,” Morrison added, laughing. “Right before this interview, we go through the songs on the show and ask ourselves, ‘Are we doing something right? Is everything alright ?’ “

“It’s a little scary because we choose the albums that mean the most to us,” Navarro continued. “We want to render the greatest possible service to these albums. Therefore, there is no harsher criticism of our sound than Billy and I. Lots of bands do covers, and Billy and I are in a cover band called Royal Machines, but for Above Ground we tried our best not to just do our version of the songs, we try to get as close as possible. the sound of the album and it’s difficult.

Navarro said he chose Reed’s “Transformer” to play because “it was one of the most interesting and provocative albums I’ve ever heard.”

“If you listen to the lyrical content and the message Lou is talking about on this record and think about the climate today – but then you think about the climate when he wrote these things – that was light years ahead. on his time, “he said. noted. “He was basically saying these are people living their lives and doing well and just as complete and whole as you or me or anyone else.”

Morrison agrees.

“Hearing ‘Transform’ and someone singing about different sexualities, drugs and all that stuff affected me a lot,” Morrison added. “The other thing we’re trying to do with this show is play albums that you can’t go and listen to. We’re not going to play a Coldplay album. We love Coldplay, but they still exist. So we play albums that you can’t listen to live.

“The greatest album of all time for me – being British and being a teenager when it was released – is ‘Never Mind the Bollocks’,” Morrison continued. “It changed my life and I was very loud about it.”

The recipient of the evening, MusiCares, is an organization that provides funds and resources to workers in the music industry, and with so many of those people out of work and unable to tour or create over the past 18 In recent months, fundraising and efforts to encourage open talk about mental health is imperative, Navarro and Morrison agree.

“When we started this concept, it was before COVID and it was very necessary,” Morrison said. “Dave and I felt that we both suffered from trauma and mental health issues, but our philosophy is really very simple and it’s okay to ask for help. So if he and I can be really public about, listen, we’ve been there, we’ve been asking for help, and we’ve been very lucky to get some help, and we’re now living a loving life and fulfilling, so can you. It’s pre-COVID. Imagine the world now as we are? This message must be spread more than ever.

There’s also an on-site auction with artwork donated to raise more money by artists such as Morrison and Navarro, contemporary street artist Shepard Fairey, and Los Angeles-based graffiti artist Risk.

“I don’t know how we do this,” Navarro said with a laugh. “It’s not just us. It’s everyone who comes to perform and is part of it. Getting back to sanity, which is the most important aspect, at the end of the day here you are looking at two ex-junkies. It is therefore clear that we can overcome what causes suffering. “

Above ground 3

With: Billy Idol, Taylor Hawkins, Perry and Etty Farrell, Corey Taylor, Mark McGrath, Steve Stevens and more

When: 7 p.m. Monday, December 20

Or: Fonda Theater, Los Angeles

Tickets: $ 59.50 on AXS.com


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New famous free store | News, Sports, Jobs

MARQUETTE – The New Free Boutique is currently celebrating the fifth anniversary of its grand opening. It’s a small store with a big goal. A little story reveals how a group of determined organizers joined the community and enabled The New Free Store to supplement more than 1,175 families in need with some of the basic necessities of life.

In 2014, some members of a local church made a commitment to help community members who were experiencing financial difficulties. The group held a series of free clearance sales in the basement of their church, which soon became known as the “The free store”. The organizers have solicited donations from the community in order to be able to supplement the necessities of life for free as many people in financial difficulty as possible. The group worked tirelessly and formed an all-volunteer non-profit organization, renamed “The new free store.” In 2016, the store moved to a small apartment building in Harvey.

Adopt the philosophy: “In God’s economy, there is always enough” the store continues its mission of serving those who need it most with clothes, linens, towels, sheets, blankets and other lightly used items to help others lead healthier lives. New personal hygiene and housekeeping products are also distributed each month and are mainly purchased through grants from community organizations. All items in the store are free for registered participants.

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Craig Sincock to receive highest honor at Living Legends of Aviation Awards

Craig Sincock, Owner, President and CEO of Avfuel Corporation, will receive the Kenn Ricci Lifetime Aviation Entrepreneur Award 2022 at the 19th Annual Living Legends of Aviation Awards. The award is the highest honor awarded during the ceremony on January 21, 2022.

When Sincock, a passionate aviator with a keen business sense, acquired Avfuel 37 years ago, he sought to disrupt and reinvent the aviation fuel supply chain. His tenacity has led to Avfuel’s evolution from a regional fuel distributor to a leading global supplier of aviation fuel and full service, offering everything from refueling equipment and comprehensive training programs. , aviation insurance and sustainable development solutions.

Sincock has dedicated his career to shaping and supporting the aviation industry. In this capacity, he was instrumental in reinventing the role of fuel distributors. Its competing counterparts quickly followed its business model and the industry changed forever.

Under Sincock’s leadership and entrepreneurial vision, the Ann Arbor, Michigan-based company has grown rapidly on a global scale. Avfuel now operates in 149 countries and serves more than 5,500 air services with more than 3,000 refueling locations worldwide, including more than 650 Avfuel-branded FBOs. Today, Avfuel supports all sectors of aviation including FBOs, Airports, Commercial Operators and Helicopters, Airlines, Cargo / Freight, and the Military.

Sincock sees his business as a way to serve the community through philanthropic initiatives, including health research, flight and aviation medical training institutions, veterans organizations, and aviation scholarships. . Sincock is an ATP pilot who frequently flies Avfuel planes.

Illustrating Ricci’s energy, enthusiasm and success, Sincock will also be inducted into the prestigious “Living Legends of Aviation” – an elite group of remarkable people with extraordinary accomplishments in aviation and aerospace. The Legends have over 100 accomplished men and women in their ranks, including entrepreneurs, innovators, industry leaders, astronauts, record breaking, pilots turned celebrities and celebrities who became pilots. Legendary actor John Travolta is “the official ambassador of aviation”.

The 2022 Living Legends of Aviation Awards will be held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, honoring the new honorees of the year.

The Kiddie Hawk Air Academy, a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit, annually produces the Living Legends of Aviation Awards. Kiddie Hawk’s mission is to give children ages 4-7 their first flying lesson.


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As violence increases in Haiti, aid groups struggle to help

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FILE – People line up for food aid in Camp Perrin, Haiti on August 20, 2021, six days after a magnitude 7.2 earthquake struck the region. The United Nations agency estimates it needs $ 97 million to help 1 million people in Haiti next year. (AP Photo / Fernando Llano, file)

PA

A spike in violence has worsened hunger and poverty in Haiti while hampering aid organizations fighting these problems in a country whose government struggles to provide basic services.

Few aid workers are willing to speak publicly about the cuts – perhaps worried about drawing attention after the October kidnapping of 17 people from Ohio-based Christian Aid Ministries – 12 of whom remain hostages.

But several confirmed, without giving details, having sent personnel out of the country and having been forced to temporarily reduce aid operations.

Gang-related kidnappings and shootings have prevented aid groups from reaching parts of the capital, Port-au-Prince, and beyond where they had previously distributed food, water and equipment. ‘other commodities.

A severe fuel shortage also prevented agencies from operating at full capacity.

“It’s only getting worse in every way it can,” said Margarett Lubin, Haiti director for CORE, a US nonprofit organization.

“You see the situation deteriorating day by day, affecting life at all levels,” Lubin said, adding that aid organizations have gone into “survival mode”.

Few places in the world depend as much on aid groups as Haiti, a nation often referred to as “the republic of NGOs.” Billions of dollars in aid have flowed to hundreds – by some estimates several thousand – of aid groups even as government has become weaker and less efficient.

Shortly after the assassination of the president on July 7, Prime Minister Ariel Henry took charge of a country still struggling to regain political stability. Almost all seats in parliament are vacant and there is no specific date yet for a long-delayed election, although Henry has said he expects them early next year.

Less than ten elected representatives currently represent a country of more than 11 million inhabitants.

And in the streets, the gangs hold the power.

More than 460 kidnappings have been reported by the Haitian National Police so far this year, more than double what was reported last year, according to the United Nations Integrated Office in Haiti.

The agency said Haitians “live in hell under the yoke of armed gangs. Rapes, murders, thefts, armed robberies and kidnappings continue to be committed on a daily basis, on populations often left to their own devices in the disadvantaged and marginalized neighborhoods of Port-au-Prince and beyond.

The agency added: “Without being able to access these areas under gang control, we are far from knowing and measuring the extent of these abuses and what Haitians really experience on a daily basis …

“Humanitarian actors have also limited their interventions due to security risks for their staff and access problems,” he added.

Large organizations like the United Nations World Food Program have found other ways to help people, such as using barges rather than vulnerable trucks to transport goods from the capital to the southern region of Haiti. But small organizations do not always have such resources.

World Vision International, a California-based organization that helps children in Haiti, told The Associated Press it had moved at least 11 of the 320 employees due to the violence and was taking undisclosed safety measures for other members of the team. staff.

Water Mission, a South Carolina nonprofit, said it was considering moving to other parts of Haiti and said kidnappings and general violence had forced it to change its staffing plans. to ensure the safety of people.

“These issues sometimes cause a slowdown in progress in our ongoing work on the drinking water project,” the organization said. “However, we continue to work despite the temporary disruptions that occur.”

The difficulties arise at a time when calls for help multiply. A magnitude 7.2 earthquake in mid-August destroyed tens of thousands of homes and killed more than 2,200 people. The country is also struggling to cope with the recent arrival of more than 12,000 deported Haitians, the majority from the United States.

In addition, more than 20,000 people have fled their homes due to gang violence this year, according to UNICEF, many of whom are living in temporary shelters in extremely unsanitary conditions and the pandemic. The United Nations agency estimates it needs $ 97 million to help 1 million people in Haiti next year.

Among them, Martin Jean Junior, a fifty-something who sold scrap metal. He said his house was burnt down in mid-June amid fighting between police and gangs.

“I’ve been on the street ever since,” he said as he lay on a blue sheet he had spread out on the hard floor of a school in Port-au-Prince temporarily converted into a shelter.

Things could soon get worse: A prominent gang leader warned Haitians this week to avoid the besieged community of Martissant, as rival gangs will fight each other in the coming days.

“Even dogs and rats will not be saved. Anything that moves, trucks, motorcycles, people, will be considered an ally of Ti-Bois, ”the gang leader known as“ Izo ”said in a video, referring to a rival gang. “Martissant is declared a combat zone, and those who ignore this warning will pay with their lives.” “

Most are already avoiding the area for fear of being kidnapped, shot, or having their cargo looted. This largely cut off the southern peninsula from the country because the main road runs through the neighborhood.

Among those recently killed by crossfire in Martissant include a nurse, a 7-year-old girl and at least five passengers on a public bus. Violence forced aid group Médecins Sans Frontières in August to close an emergency clinic that had served the community for 15 years.

Liman Pierre, a 40-year-old mechanic, said he had recently had to drive through Martissant to get to work and saw four dead, including two elderly neighbors and the biker carrying them.

“Criminals kill with impunity and leave the dead to dogs,” he said. Those who are not devoured by dogs are set on fire, outright. It cannot be.

For the moment, Pierre is sleeping in the streets of Port-au-Prince because he fears having to cross Martissant to get home: “We don’t even have the opportunity to visit relatives and friends in difficulty.

“The state does not exist,” says Pierre. “Criminals have been in power for over six months. It is December and we do not see the light at the end of the tunnel.


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Live With This Herbal Recipe From Youth Health Advocate Haile Thomas – Food Tank

At each age, Haile Thomas’ life has revolved around nutritious food. Her Jamaican immigrant mother taught her how to cook when she was five, and three years later, when her father was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, her family turned their diet and lifestyle into a nurturing center and restorative food. When Thomas was 12, she founded The organization HAPPY, a non-profit organization that promotes the mental and physical well-being of young people by developing knowledge about diet and self-advocacy. At 17, she was the youngest certified integrative health coach in the United States. With her messages of healthy eating and youth empowerment, she has appeared in the White House, at Food tank tops, and in the national media.

And last year she published a cookbook-slash-empowerment-manifesto, Live alive, which was nominated for an NAACP Image Award. In addition to the more than 80 herbal recipes, his book opens with a series of essays on his upbringing, how we are shaped by what we consume and Thomas’s seven “Power Points”. From wellness and relationships, to education, creativity and community, and conversations with young women who embody these principles, Thomas breaks down the components of a lively life. And as one of the essays notes, the book is meant to be interactive – “a place where food stains and deep thoughts can coexist!” She writes – so there are journal pages and writing prompts to encourage thought and action.

“We really want [youth] see food and cooking as something that can really permeate their daily life and be something super fun and accessible ”, Thomas told Food Tank President Danielle Nierenberg at the Food Tank Summit 2018.

For our third monthly cookbook series, Food Tank is excited to share Thomas’ recipe for Red Roasted Cauliflower Steaks with Chimichurri Sauce. If you missed the first few installments of our cookbook series, we’ve featured two recipes from Jubilee, Toni Tipton-Martin’s award-winning exploration of hundreds of years of black cuisine, and a selection of fall recipes from Beth Dooley’s local and seasonal cookbook The lively cuisine. Make sure to grab these recipes, but first, join us as we cook and live a busy life with Haile Thomas!

And one more thing: when you cook this recipe at home, let us know! Tag us on social media @FoodTank or #FoodTank so we can admire your meals and share your photos.

* * * * *

Red roasted cauliflower steaks with chimichurri sauce

Makes 4 servings

Knowing how to season and roast a good cauliflower steak is essential at home, so I pass this favorite recipe on to you! Due to the neutral flavor of cauliflower, it’s a great canvas for spices and sauces that really pop. Serve with your favorite vegetables and grains!

—Haile Thomas, Living Lively: 80 Herbal Recipes To Activate Your Power And Nurture Your Potential

ROASTED CAULIFLOWER

  • 1 tablespoon of garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon of paprika
  • 1 tablespoon of dried thyme
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 medium cauliflower, cut through the core into four slices about ½ inch thick
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil

CHIMICHURRI SAUCE

  • ½ cup of fresh cilantro, leaves and stems
  • ½ cup of fresh parsley, leaves and stems
  • ¼ cup fresh basil leaves
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup white wine vinegar
  • Kosher salt

1. To roast the cauliflower: Preheat the oven to 425 ° F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. In a medium bowl, combine garlic powder, paprika, thyme, cayenne pepper and salt to taste.

3. Arrange the cauliflower “steaks” on the prepared baking sheet and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Sprinkle the herb and spice mixture evenly on both sides of each cauliflower steak. Drizzle the cauliflower steaks with the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil.

4. Roast for 20 to 25 minutes, until the cauliflower is golden and crisp on top.

5. Meanwhile, to make the chimichurri sauce: In a food processor, combine the cilantro, parsley, basil, garlic, olive oil, vinegar and salt to taste and mix until smooth consistency. Put aside.

6. Drizzle the steaks with the chimichurri sauce and serve.

From LIVING LIVELY by Haile Thomas Copyright © 2020 by Haile Thomas. Reprinted with permission from William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.

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For the first time in decades, earnings grow faster for low-wage workers

Abramson pays his employees at ECI stores about $ 3 more per hour than they were two years ago, and now offers a pension plan. The bump doesn’t just keep its businesses on staff, it attracts better employees, including some who have been exhausted by stressful jobs in education and healthcare. “As a company that is surviving the pandemic,” he said, “we are more adaptable now. “

In the past year, the lowest-paid workers have seen their incomes rise by around 8%, according to a new To analyse by Arindrajit Dube, economist at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. While 5.5% of this gain was absorbed by inflation, those in the bottom third of the salary scale (taking into account occupation and worker demographics) saw their incomes rise in average, while in the top 70% they declined. .

Over the summer, for example, those earning $ 15 an hour saw their wages increase by about 1%, which explains inflation, while incomes fell by 0.2%. for those earning $ 30 an hour.

“It’s striking,” said Dube, “because it’s pretty much against the grain of the past 40 years where we’ve seen wage growth be the exact opposite.”

And it is particularly noteworthy that this is happening during a pandemic that has wreaked havoc on many employers who are raising wages, he said, including those in retail, hospitality and transportation. Workers are quitting their jobs at an all-time high, especially in lower-paying industries, as safety and childcare concerns persist. Early retirements are on the rise and the number of immigrant workers is falling. Some people are also rethinking their priorities.

“There’s a sense in which people who had particularly bad jobs, if you will, are less likely to want to stay there, and that creates that pressure,” he said.

Overall, real average hourly earnings, which represent inflation, have declined 1.2 percent over the past year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. But wage growth “has accelerated considerably” in the past six to eight months, according to a Conference Board poll released Wednesday. And it is expected to continue to climb.

Employers are expected to raise wages 3.9% next year, the highest rate in 14 years, the nonprofit business group reported. This jump is due to an increase in wages for new hires – especially for those under 25 and workers who have changed jobs – and inflation, which has increased at the highest rate in nearly 30 years. year. Persistent labor shortages will likely drive wage growth above 4% until next year, the board said.

Some of the increases at the bottom of the earnings scale are due to the increase in the minimum wage. In Massachusetts, the minimum of $ 13.50 will drop to $ 14.25 on Jan. 1 and to $ 15 in 2023. Yet about half of American workers earn less than $ 20 an hour, according to the organization in nonprofit Living Wage for US, but 80% of the population live in a place where the salary needed to pay for housing, health care, child care, and other expenses to support families is more than that .

In Massachusetts, 92% of the population resides in a county where a family of four needs an annual family income of at least $ 100,000 to live with a “basic level of decency,” according to Living Wage for US, which has just launched a certification program. for employers who pay a living wage. But less than 44% of the state’s households earn that much.

A higher salary for those who need it most could be a silver lining for the pandemic, which has wreaked havoc among many immigrants and people of color in lower-paying jobs – provided it increases enough, a said Zeynep Ton, professor at MIT Sloan School of Management and co-founder of the Good Jobs Institute.

“The wages are sticky,” she said. “Once you raise them it’s very difficult to go back. “

Raising wages can also improve job performance, forcing companies to view workers as more valuable and give them more responsibility – and treat them with more respect, Ton said. But planning more regular hours is also essential.

“I think the workers are finally fed up,” she said. “They are used like robots.

Several national employers have announced wage increases in recent months. Amazon offers a starting salary of $ 18 to $ 22.50 an hour – versus $ 15 – for warehouse and transportation workers, and Costco just moved up to $ 17 an hour, after rising to $ 16 in February. Starbucks, CVS, and Walgreens all increase base pay to $ 15 an hour.

At Bank of America, the entry-level salary was $ 15 an hour when Ajna Angjeliu started as a cashier in Boston in 2019. Since then it has increased several times and hit $ 21 in October.

“It created a trusting relationship between me and the company,” said Angjeliu, 22, who now assists clients with their accounts and studies part-time at Boston University, while helping his parents pay. the bills. “I know this organization is a business that will help me grow.”

Bank of America branch manager Tilan Perera has seen interest in jobs grow as entry-level salary increases.Pat Greenhouse / Globe Staff

Tilan Perera, the branch manager at 100 Federal St., where Angjeliu works, found that interest in jobs increased as wages rose. “There are more people applying,” he said.

The bank plans to hire 5,000 people this quarter and increase starting salaries to at least $ 25 an hour by 2025.

Small employers are also increasing wages. More than three-quarters of owners in a recent National Federation of Independent Business survey said they had already increased their pay or were planning to do so soon, the highest percentage in 48 years. David Weaver, chairman of Compensation & HR Group in Burlington, said wages are increasing mostly at the entry level, with quick service restaurants, grocery stores, retail stores and banks announcing higher hourly wages in the range from $ 17 to $ 21.

Yet soaring inflation means these increases may not mean much.

It’s sort of a vicious cycle, said Christopher Carlozzi, Massachusetts director of the National Federation of Independent Business. “A lot of the price increases that consumers are seeing are the result of wage increases due to labor shortages. “

At Whole Foods Market in the Boston area, starting wages went from $ 15 to $ 16 an hour this fall, and employees above received a 50-cent raise. Workers also get an extra $ 2 an hour until early January, and overtime and Sunday pay are doubled.

A local employee, who asked not to be identified because he was not authorized to speak to the media, said he made $ 19.20 an hour after the increase and $ 38.40 on Sunday . “It’s a teacher’s salary,” he said, noting that a client told him she could apply because the Sunday rate is higher than what she earns as a teacher. nurse.

The 50-cent increase doesn’t make a big difference to him, but the extra Sunday pay means he can work fewer days. That will likely change in January, however. “It’s a little depressing,” he said.

Fred Goff, managing director of Cambridge-based job platform Jobcase, said employers love to brag about pay increases, but when you consider how many of them are temporary, and how much the cost of the life has increased – and how high some corporate profits are. hovering – it sounds hollow.

“There are a lot of people who want to be applauded for raising wages from $ 13 to $ 15 an hour,” he said. “Don’t do me a favor if you’re just keeping up with inflation.”


Katie Johnston can be reached at [email protected] Follow her on twitter @ktkjohnston.



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An aging country shows others how to manage

ESINCE 1,495 residents of Gojome, a town in northern Japan, gathered for a morning market. One recent weekday, along a street with closed and almost empty shops, elderly vendors display their autumn wares: mushrooms and chestnuts, okra, eggplants and pears. It wasn’t always so empty, sighs Ogawa Kosei, who runs a bookstore on the street. He shows pictures taken by his father which show the scene filled with customers.

Gojome’s population has halved since 1990. More than half of its residents are over the age of 65, making it one of the oldest towns in Akita, the oldest prefecture in Japan, which is in its own right. tour the oldest country in the world. Still, Gojome is less of an outlier than an omen. According to UN, each country is experiencing growth in the size and proportion of its elderly population; by 2050, one in six people in the world will be over 65, up from one in eleven in 2019. UN also predicts that 55 countries, including China, will see their populations decline by 2050.

Demographic change has two drivers that are often grouped together: increasing longevity and a falling birth rate. Their convergence requires “a new map of life,” explains Akiyama Hiroko, founder of the Institute of Gerontology at the University of Tokyo. The infrastructure created when the population was younger and the population pyramid more solid must be rethought, from health to housing to transport. The new reality demands a “completely different way of thinking,” says Kashiwa Kazuyori, head of Gojome’s planning department. When he started working in the 1970s, the focus was on growth. Now it is a matter of managing the decline.

Part of the challenge is that demographic change affects everyone differently. Two cities or regions may look alike from afar, but have distinct historical, cultural and environmental conditions; two people can be the same age, earn the same money, and live on the same street, but have different mental and physical health. “Context is often lacking,” says Kudo Shogo of Akita International University. He is one of dozens of young foreigners who have been welcomed to Gojome, which was a trade hub at the crossroads of agricultural districts. Comparable agriculture-focused neighbors have been less open to newcomers.

This makes it difficult to design a national policy. “There is no single model,” says Iio Jun, political scientist at HANDLES. While the national government is responsible for finances, including pensions, the new life map is best drawn from scratch. A lot of ideas come from listening to citizens, says Ms. Akiyama. “They know what the problems are and often they know how to solve them. “

One question is how aging is discussed: as a problem or a burden. “Older people feel that society doesn’t need them,” says Hatakeyama Junko, 70, head of Akita Partnership, a non-profit organization that runs a community center. Longevity in itself is not a problem, it should be celebrated. Problems arise when people lead long but unhealthy, lonely or dependent lives. The goal in Japan has shifted from increasing life expectancy to improving “healthy and independent life expectancy,” says Akiyama.

It means finding ways for older people to continue working. Almost half of the 65-69 age group and a third of the 70-74 age group are employed. The Japanese Gerontological Society has called for reclassifying people aged 65 to 74 as “pre-old.” Ms. Akiyama talks about creating “second life workplaces”. But the work of the second life will be different from that of the first; its contribution may not be easily captured in growth statistics. “We need to strive for well-being, not just economic productivity,” says Akiyama. Experiences abound, from municipalities that train retirees to become farmers, to businesses that encourage older employees to launch startups. The elderly “want dignity and respect,” says Matsuyama Daiko of Taizo-in temple in Kyoto, which has a “second life program” that offers courses for retirees to become priests.

The other key is to stay healthy, physically and mentally. Wiser municipalities focus on preventive care. At the stylish Kadokawa Care Center, a former school in Toyama, northwest Tokyo, 70s, 80s and 90s splash about in a pool and soar on exercise machines. “Without this place, I would be in a retirement home,” exclaims Kyoda Taketoshi, 82. Socialization is no less important. “It was expensive to build this place, but it was worth it,” says Saito Yoneaki, 80, before jumping to join friends in the sauna. Although healthy life expectancy in Japan is eight to 12 years less than overall life expectancy, the gap narrowed slightly between 2010 and 2016.

The birth rate is more difficult to change. It fell to 1.34 in 2020, well below the 2.1 needed to maintain a stable population. Even if Japan could increase it, rural areas would still struggle. One study estimates that more than half of Japan’s 1,700 municipalities could disappear by 2040, as young people, especially women, leave. Yet while a return to growth is unlikely in most regions, there is an alternative to outright disappearance: a critical core of newcomers. Even a handful of transplants can revitalize an aging city without fully replacing the population, notes Iio.

Gojome is a good example. Although the population is decreasing, “a new wind is blowing in the city”, explains Watanabe Hikobe, its mayor. Over the past decade, a small group of young foreigners have arrived, drawn by visions of a slow, bucolic life, and the chance to try out new models of loose work and community living. Yanagisawa Ryu, 34, a computer science graduate from Japan’s leading university, quit his job in Tokyo and became a “social entrepreneur”. He oversees Babame Base, a business center in an empty school in Gojome that is home to a graphic design studio, an ecotourism business, a local doctor, and a business that trains farmers in the use of drones, among others.

Such “urban migrants” are still a relative rarity. Mr. Yanagisawa admits his college friends find his lifestyle choices “weird.” But in many ways, they are the vanguard. “Rather than trying to recreate the past, we need to think about: what kind of community, what kind of city do we want now? Mr. Kudo said. They are not the only foreigners to settle.

This article appeared in the Special Feature section of the print edition under the title “Le vieux pays”


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Non profit living

Houston NFL player Emmanuel Ellerbee launches Bee’s Believers nonprofit to help expose student-athletes to STEM careers

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) – There comes a time when athletes need to hang up their cleats. A Houston native, in his fourth season in the NFL, started a nonprofit aimed at building young student-athletes for life after the game.

“The most important thing for you is your mind, and your mind is something that no one can take away from you,” said Atlanta Falcons linebacker Emmanuel Ellerbee.

Ellerbee’s nonprofit Bee’s Believers aims to bridge the gap between student-athletes and science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM.

“Our mission is to offer students opportunities through athletics and STE (A) M, so that they have the chance to discover new passions, on and off the field”, indicates the association on his website. “No child should be limited in what they seek to accomplish in this life, and we made it our mission to help them raise.”

Ellerbee, a product of Strake Jesuit College Preparatory, said it was his geometry teacher who told him that at the end of the day he must have more than just playing football.

“Bee’s Believers was an idea that really developed when I was at Strake Jesuit,” Ellerbee said. “Everyone at this school made sure that what I was doing on the football field was not a total synthesis of who I was. They always made sure I had it in class too.”

So that’s exactly what he did. Ellerbee had two dreams: playing in the NFL and getting a civil engineering degree.

“When I left school and during the recruiting process, a lot of people said to me, ‘Oh, you’re going to have to choose one or the other. be a great athlete. I was like ‘Why can’t I do both?’ ”

Ellerbee received her civil engineering degree from Rice University and is still living her NFL dream.

“I don’t think anyone’s dreams or what they want in life will ever be easy. You always have to go through trials and tribulations, hills and valleys, to be able to make sure it comes true. you have to kind of be stubborn with how you approach your dream, ”Ellerbee said.

He said he hopes his experiences will encourage all athletes, especially blacks and Latinos, to consider STEM as an option.

“There are a smaller number of African Americans in STEM careers, as well as Hispanic Americans,” Ellerbee said. “For us, it was about going to inner-city schools and just giving them the opportunity to have that exposure that they usually wouldn’t have.”

In March 2022, ninth grade students are invited to a seminar hosted by the nonprofit association, where students will be introduced to other like-minded student-athletes from other high schools in the region of Houston. In addition to meeting other students, they will also be able to meet and talk to former and current professional athletes who are now pursuing careers in STEM. Students will be able to experience and learn firsthand the many layers that STEM has to offer.

“We believe that when we welcome people of different beliefs, origins and socio-economic status, you would be able to create a better world because everyone understands the difficulties that others are going through,” said Ellerbee.

Copyright © 2021 KTRK-TV. All rights reserved.


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Non profit living

Confront the “myth of more money”

Part three in a series on the last eight years of my Seattle housing work.

From 2016 until the end of Washington State’s legislative session in 2019, I changed my approach to challenge the idea of ​​charging fees on new housing development and giving that money to organizations in non-profit. My argument was that the state’s largest city, Seattle, enforced the most rules, slowing production and thus creating higher prices as demand increased. As a result, most of the state’s available grants were consumed by Seattle, which was unfair to the rest of the state. Not only that, I argued, but building nonprofit housing in Seattle was very expensive and inefficient. Conventional wisdom was and still is that what is needed to solve housing problems is not more housing, but more and more money.

If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to challenge big business and government allies to crush your critics, forget the idea that it’s like the movie Silkwood. There is no Cher or Kurt Russell and above all there is no journalist waiting somewhere to write about it. It’s more like the X Files, if you go up against the big guys you’ll be caught on and ignored. The prize will be an effort to make you irrelevant, mad, or part of some kind of unreasonable clique. I had no idea when I took over the industrial non-profit housing complex.

Here is my logic. Having been a nonprofit developer, I knew these developers had to face a steep climb to build their projects, arguably a steeper climb than for-profit developers. The number of contracts, commitments, and acres of paperwork were all stacked on the same demands as the for-profit sector: finding land, zoning, design review, utilities, and labor costs. But because they had political favors, they could ask for more money to solve these problems and the political structure would oblige them with interventions like Mandatory Housing Affordability, the program that would make it worse and not better for the poor because “affordable housing” would be paid for. for with higher rents (see my last post and many more).

I knew the costs and difficulty of building non-profit housing, housing paid for by the MHA program, when exposed, could make people question the whole program itself. If nothing else, if I could find a way to show that more money was being spent on subsidized nonprofit housing in Seattle (where the MHA extortion program operated) than in the Washington countryside. , maybe we could force a conversation. The data supported my point; housing subsidies were consumed quickly by the state’s most blatant regulator of housing production, Seattle. If I could show that this was done to the detriment of the poorest immigrant farm workers, maybe we could get the press interested.

So I analyzed years of data from the state’s Housing Trust Fund and found that indeed, subsidies were piling up in Seattle while in rural areas, workers lived in their cars. I wrote an opinion piece on how access to water was choking the supply in rural areas and thus harming rural workers, primarily immigrants to Mexico. It infuriated House Speaker Frank Chopp as much as it pleased lawmakers in rural Washington, who were outraged by the rushed court decision by a left-wing Seattle advocacy organization. I had entered into a long-standing conflict on the side of the rural Republicans. Here I was a former Democrat from Seattle, working with Republicans.

My conversations with the President and with the Republican leaders were strange; I was making a valid argument, which went against everyone’s sensitivity. Democrats felt out of place, justifying more and more spending on expensive housing in Seattle (up to $ 500,000 per unit) while talking about how much they cared about rural immigrants, the people who did not benefit from housing subsidies because of rampant spending. in Seattle. Republicans were resistant to big spending schemes and more bureaucracy. So my proposal for a farm worker housing authority to take money out of Seattle and funnel it to farm worker housing fell on deaf ears there. I had managed to make valid points, but the policy was not in favor of the solution, of big changes in the subsidy system and of better management.

In a passive and aggressive Washington, my efforts have certainly been noticed. The President complimented me in an argument saying, “People are mad at you! ” Sure. But making people uncomfortable does not necessarily lead to policy change. Both left and right seem to have made peace with the inefficient way of subsidizing housing. I failed to convince Republicans in the Legislature to support the idea of ​​making the system fairer, and farmers and nonprofit real estate developers in rural Washington seemed intimidated by the task of taking over. the well-funded and politically connected non-profit organization. housing agencies in Seattle.

My campaign against the non-profit housing complex was a failure. He revealed, however, that there is an ongoing disparity in the way housing is subsidized in Washington. Recently, I showed how tax credits are pouring into Seattle, even though there is more poverty in rural Washington. Being white and awake means more money for housing. It was a deadly battle that exhausted many of my supporters, but I’m glad I made the effort. With all the money raised from the fees generated by the MHA fees and other largesse of recent federal legislation, I know the problem will not be solved with more money. It will get worse. The day may come when everyone can do the math and agree that fairness and efficiency are compassionate and that inflation is the greatest enemy of the poor.


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