The Boston branch of the NAACP released a report card at the end of October that graded Mayor Walsh on how well he fulfilled the campaign promises he made to communities of color during the 2013 election.
Mayor Walsh received below average grades on issues ranging from housing, education, economic development and public safety. During the final mayoral debate with Tito Jackson on WGBH on Oct. 24, Mayor Walsh said that he could not solve all of these issues in just four years.
The president of the Boston branch of the NAACP, Tanisha Sullivan, and its vice president, Segun Idowu, joined Boston Public Radio Thursday to discuss the report card and what the Mayor can to do raise his grade.
Sullivan says that the motivation behind the report card was not just to help resolve many of the issues but to also spark "meaningful progress in addressing some of the issues that were raised during that 2013 campaign.”
Both Sullivan and Idowu agree that one of the most prevalent problems for communities of color is affordable housing, which the mayor received a "D" for.
“Affordable housing, folks in our community are struggling, specifically Roxbury, Dorchester, Mattapan and Hyde Park, as well,” said Idowu.
For Sullivan, the issue of affordable housing boils down to ensuring that Bostonians working and living in the city have the opportunity to stay in the city and benefit from Boston's progress. She believes that changing what we view as affordable can move the city in the right direction.
"That goes back to how we define affordable … we need to rethink what affordability is," Sullivan said. "Most people are making below $60,000 on average in the city. Affordable means not just people that are middle to upper middle class. We need to be thinking about the people who are making less."
Click on the audio player above to listen to the entire interview with Tanisha Sullivan and the Segun Idowu.