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Jun 27
National HIV Testing Day: June 27, 2017!

Facts about HIV in Boston​

  • As of December 2015 there were 5,800 reported cases of people living with HIV in Boston.
  • There were 141 new reports of infection in 2015, down from the 180 in 2014. Getting tested gives you the knowledge you need to protect yourself and your partners.​


HIV Testing FAQS:

Who should get tested for HIV?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that all people between the ages of 13 to 64 should be tested for HIV at least once in their lifetime. Certain groups of people have a higher risk of being exposed, such as men who have sex with men and injection drug users. Having unprotected sex or having multiple sex partners also increases the risk of infection. While some groups are at higher risk of getting HIV, anyone who is exposed to the virus through sexual or blood contact can get HIV. The only way to know your status for sure is to get tested!

What is the HIV test like? 

Test samples can be taken from blood, urine, or a swab from the inside of your cheek. Talk to your healthcare provider to find out which test is best for you.

What will it cost me? 

The HIV test is covered by most health insurance. If you do not have health insurance, there are also several free and confidential testing centers throughout Boston. To find a testing center near you or to get health insurance, call the Mayor's Health Line at 617-534-5050.

How long do I have to wait to find out my results? 

Between 30 minutes to a few days depending on the type of test you receive.

Will people know I got tested? 

The tests are confidential. Your friends, family, and partner will not know you have been tested unless you tell them.

Where can I get tested? 

There are many testing clinics in Boston, and many also provide testing for other STIs as well! To find the closest testing center near you, visit https://gettested.cdc.gov/  and enter your zipcode.

When can I get tested?

June 27th is National HIV Testing day, but every day is a good day to get tested!


"I feel fine. Do I really need to get tested?"

Did you know that, according to the CDC, in 2014, there were 1.1 million Americans who were HIV positive; however 1 in 7 did not know they were infected? Many people do not have symptoms; the only way to know for sure whether you have HIV is to get tested, even if you feel healthy. ​

Though HIV is a serious illness and currently has no cure, there are many effective treatment options to manage and improve the lives of those who are HIV positive.  Getting tested is the first step to gaining access to many important resources that can help you lead a healthy life no matter your status.

"Take the test, Take control!"


Jun 25
National Mosquito Control Awareness Week


It's the time of the year when mosquitoes are everywhere. They spread illnesses such as West Nile virus (WNV) and Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE). The best way to avoid WNV and EEE is to prevent mosquito bites. Mosquitoes are most active and mostly likely to spread disease during the summer months from July to September.

WNV has been found in Boston mosquitoes every year since 2000. WNV in people is rare in Boston, but it has caused some people to get very sick. EEE is found occasionally in Boston mosquitoes. Cases of EEE in people are extremely rare in Boston, but can happen. People over the age of 50 are more likely to experience serious illnesses if they are infected with WNV. EEE can cause serious illness in any age group. 

STOP MOSQUITO BITES:

1. Use mosquito repellent.

  • Use repellants containing DEET, oil of lemon eucalyptus, Picaridin or IR3535.
  • Make sure to use EPA approved repellents.
  • Visit http://www2.epa.gov/insect-repellents/find-insect-repellent-right-you to find the right repellent for you.
  • Always read the directions on the product label.
  • Apply DEET to exposed skin (avoid eyes and mouth) and on clothes, but not on open cuts or wounds.
  • Do not apply underneath clothes.
  • After returning indoors, wash off repellent with soap and water. If the product has been applied directly to clothing, wash it before wearing again.
  • Do not use DEET concentrations of more than 30% for adults.
  • Do not let children apply repellents to themselves.
  • Do not apply repellents to children's eyes, mouth, or hands and use cautiously around ears.
  • Do not apply DEET on infants (mosquito netting can be used over infant carriers) or oil of lemon eucalyptus on children under 3 years of age.
  • Do not use these products on pets unless the label approves.


2. Cover up.

  • Wear protective clothing such as long sleeved shirts, long pants, and socks whenever possible. Tuck your shirt into your pants to keep mosquitoes from going under your clothes.

 3. Avoid mosquitoes.

  • Although mosquitoes can bite at any time of day, they are most active from dusk to dawn. Try to limit the time you spend outdoors during this time.

4. Protect your home.

  • Keep windows and doors closed and use air conditioner if available.
  • Make sure windows and door screens have no holes in them. Screens in good condition will help prevent mosquitoes from getting inside your house. 


5. Find out about what Boston is doing to reduce the number of mosquitoes.

  • The Suffolk County Mosquito Control Project works with BPHC to reduce the mosquito population in Boston. Products to prevent mosquito larvae from becoming biting adults are applied in catch basins throughout the City. Limited spraying is also done to reduce adult mosquito populations.  For a full list of any upcoming spraying, please visit bphc.org/mosquitocontrol. Boston residents that have questions about mosquito control activities can contact the Suffolk County Mosquito Control Project at 781-899-5730.
 

What should I do if a mosquito bites me?

Both WNV and EEE are rare, and it is unlikely that you will get sick from a mosquito bite. However, you should contact your healthcare provider immediately if you develop high fever, vomiting, confusion, severe headache, or body aches.

STOP MOSQUITO BREEDING:

Mosquitoes lay their eggs in standing water, so it is important to make sure items around your home do not collect water. It only takes one week for a mosquito larva living in water to grow into an adult. Be sure to drain any items holding water once a week to prevent mosquito breeding such as

  • Containers: unused flowerpots, buckets, garbage cans, wheelbarrows
  • Gutters: remove leaves and other debris that traps water
  • Pools: cover unused swimming pools and turn over kiddie pools
  • Old tires: cover or dispose


Jun 12
Mosquito Spraying Planned for Hyde Park and West Roxbury

​The Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) would like to advise residents and community members in Hyde Park and West Roxbury of upcoming sprayings to help control mosquito populations in selected neighborhood areas.

The Suffolk County Mosquito Control Project is planning to spray for mosquitoes using truck mounted aerosol sprayers in a Hyde Park neighborhood on Wednesday, June 14 and a West Roxbury neighborhood on Thursday, June 15. All spraying is done between dusk and 11:30 p.m. 

On Wednesday night, spraying will be done in neighborhoods in Hyde Park in the areas near Dale Street, Deforest Street, Austin Street, Gordon Avenue and Reservation Road.

On Thursday night, spraying is planned for neighborhoods in the vicinity of VFW Parkway that are located between Corey Street and Gardner Street including streets near Vermont Street, Lasell Road, Brook Farm Road, Carroll Street and Chesbrough Road. 

If spraying is postponed on either night, it will be rescheduled for Monday, June 22.

A map depicting areas to be sprayed has been posted on the Project website at http://scmcp.webs.com.

The Project uses a spray formulation containing the pesticide, sumithrin, to control mosquitoes. Sumithrin is a synthetic pyrethroid that is classified as slightly toxic by the EPA. Mosquito control applications of sumithrin do not pose a significant risk to people or their pets due to the low toxicity of sumithrin and the small amount used to control mosquitoes. As with any pesticide, people should minimize exposure. If residents see a spray truck approaching, they are advised to go indoors for a couple of minutes while the spray dissipates. Residents are also advised to close windows facing the street. Beekeepers do not need to take any special precautions since spraying begins after dusk.

To help prevent mosquitoes from breeding, BPHC advises residents to limit places around the home where standing water can collect. People should turn over unused flower pots, buckets, wheelbarrows and garbage cans; remove leaves and other debris that can clog gutters and trap water; dispose of or cover old tires; and cover swimming pools when not in use.

If residents have any questions related to the spraying or any questions on mosquitoes, call the Suffolk County Mosquito Control Project at (781) 899-5730. BPHC and the Suffolk County Mosquito Control Project ask that neighbors remind those without access to email of the planned sprayings.

For more information on mosquito-borne illness, call the Boston Public Health Commission at (617) 534-5611 or visit www.bphc.org/mbi

Jun 02
Boston Kicks Off Free Summer Fitness Class Series

The Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) and the Boston Parks and Recreation Department yesterday launched the 2017 Boston Parks Summer Fitness Series sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield.

The three-month series brings 26 free fitness classes per week to parks in 14 neighborhoods across the city, aiming to activate these spaces while increasing access to physical fitness opportunities across all of Boston's neighborhoods.

"We know that being active is important for overall health, but we also know how tough that can be to achieve for some people who have less access to physical fitness options," said BPHC Executive Director Monica Valdes Lupi, JD, MPH. "The Boston Parks Summer Fitness Series is a fun way for people to stay on track to meet their health goals, by bringing free fitness opportunities to the very neighborhoods where our residents live, work, and play."

According to the Health of Boston report, 21 percent of adults and 14 percent of high school students are obese. These rates are even higher among communities of color where 33 percent of Black adults and 27 percent of Latino adults were obese, compared to 16 percent of White adult residents. Only about half of adults in Boston have reported to exercise regularly. 

By engaging in a citywide effort to increase opportunities for physical activity, the Parks Department and BPHC aim to increase physical health for all of Boston's residents. This year's series looks to build upon previous program efforts by expanding the number of parks that offer free classes to city residents and making them more accessible to all neighborhoods. In extending this opportunity into the neighborhoods, the Boston Parks Summer Fitness Series aims to further reduce barriers to active living and achieve the goal of ensuring that Bostonians across the city have ample opportunity to be active. This year's Summer Fitness Series classes continue to be tailored to the interests of residents and participants. Many classes for the first time will be offered in Spanish.

"We are pleased to be teaming up again with the Boston Public Health Commission and Blue Cross Blue Shield to offer these healthy activities in our parks," said Boston Parks Commissioner Chris Cook. "Getting people outside and improving their lives is an important part of our mission at the Boston Parks and Recreation Department. To allow people to do this right in their own neighborhoods means that fitness is within reach of so many more Boston residents."

"At Blue Cross, we believe that the public and private sector have a responsibility to help all Massachusetts residents lead healthy lives by increasing their access to positive environments and experiences that inspire healthy eating and physical activity," said Jeff Bellows, Vice President of Corporate Citizenship and Public Affairs at Blue Cross. "Staying active and setting goals keeps your health moving in the right direction. The Boston Parks Summer Fitness series provides accessible physical activity opportunities that are high-quality, safe, and fun. We could not be more thrilled to partner with the City of Boston on this innovative program."

The June 1 kick-off event featured free high-energy 30-minute Zumba and line dancing classes open to all fitness levels, providing an introduction to all that the series has to offer Bostonians this summer including salsa dancing, yoga, tai chi, Zumba, boot camp, line dancing, and more. Polar Beverages provided free water at the event. This year's series includes classes specifically for seniors, children and families. Fitness classes will be offered from June 3 to August 31.

For a full schedule of Boston Parks Summer Fitness Series classes, visit bphc.org/summerfitness. For updates, follow @HealthyBoston, @BostonParksDept, and #BostonMoves on Twitter.​

Jun 02
State Health Officials Warn of Mumps Outbreak

​The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) today alerted greater Boston healthcare providers and local boards of health to a mumps outbreak after 12 cases have been reported since the end of March.

To date, the vast majority of confirmed and probable mumps cases in Massachusetts have been among vaccinated college students and others linked to colleges and universities.  

The 12 new cases are among adults ranging in age from 20 to 41 and living in Chelsea, Boston, and Revere with no known connection to higher education, and public health officials say that may represent a change in the epidemiology of mumps in Massachusetts.

The residents presented symptoms of mumps between March 24 and May 31; 10 of the 12 have shown signs of illness since May 9. All of the residents are Latino and include members of the Colombian, Dominican, Guatemalan, and Salvadoran communities. None is known to have traveled internationally prior to becoming ill. For the majority of the residents, vaccination histories are unknown; most are believed to be unvaccinated against mumps.

DPH and local health departments are investigating these cases and instituting isolation and quarantine measures to control the spread of mumps, which is spread by droplets among people in close contact. Unvaccinated individuals are most susceptible to mumps infection.

``MMR vaccination is highly protective against mumps and is recommended for children and adults,” said Public Health Commissioner Monica Bharel, MD, MPH, referring to the Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR) vaccine.  “In addition, those who have mumps should stay isolated at home for 5 days after their onset of swelling.  Mumps is usually a mild disease but can cause serious illness.  If you think you have mumps, stay home and call your healthcare provider.’’

DPH will be reaching out to Latino communities in Massachusetts to increase awareness about mumps and to encourage vaccination. Mumps virus is spread through infected respiratory tract secretions. It can be spread within three to six feet when an infected person coughs or sneezes or with direct contact with infected secretions (e.g. sharing water bottles). The incubation period can range from 12 to 25 days. Parotitis (swelling of the salivary glands) is the most common symptom (30-65%), but non‐specific symptoms such as myalgia, anorexia, malaise, headache, and low‐grade fever may precede the parotitis by several days. In the pre-vaccine era, 15-30% of infections were asymptomatic.
 
People are considered infectious from two days before symptoms begin until five days after the onset of parotid swelling. Therefore, those suspected of mumps should be isolated and should refrain from public activities for five days after the onset of swelling.
 
In 2016, Massachusetts experienced a large mumps outbreak with 252 reported cases, which is more than 15 times the usual number of mumps cases. Those cases were part of a national mumps outbreak, which saw more than 5,800 mumps cases, the largest number in a decade.
So far this year the mumps outbreak continues in Massachusetts, with nearly 300 suspected cases of mumps investigated and 35 cases confirmed.

For additional information, contact your local health department or DPH at 983-6800 or visithttp://www.mass.gov/eohhs/gov/departments/dph/programs/id/epidemiology/factsheets.html.​​​

Jun 01
Boston to Kick Off Free Summer Fitness Class Series

Today the Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) and the Boston Parks and Recreation Department will launch the 2017 Boston Parks Summer Fitness Series sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield.

The launch event will take place in Copley Square from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., and will feature free 30-minute Zumba and line dancing classes open to people of all fitness levels. The launch event will introduce all that the series has to offer Bostonians this summer, including salsa dancing, yoga, tai chi, Zumba, boot camp, line dancing, and more.

Classes will take place in 14 Boston neighborhoods from June 3 to August 31, 2017.

WHEN: Thursday, June 1, 2017

TIME: Press availability 5:30 p.m. - 6 p.m.  

 WHERE: Copley Square, Boston

 WHO: 

  • Monica Valdes Lupi, JD, MPH, Executive Director, BPHC

  • Chris Cook, Commissioner, Boston Parks and Recreation 

  • Jeff Bellows, Vice President of Corporate Citizenship, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts

For a full schedule of Boston Park Summer Fitness Series, visit bphc.org/summerfitness. For updates, follow @HealthyBoston and @BostonParksDept on Twitter, or call (617) 534-2355. 

May 30
BPHC's Health Equity Advisory Committee Recruiting New Members

​The Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) is recruiting members to join the first Health Equity Advisory Committee (HEAC) in its work to advance equity for all Boston residents. The HEAC participates in the planning, development and implementation of BPHC's Health Equity Strategic Plan, and advises the Office of Health Equity in the development of policy matters, communications, data, and inclusive community engagement practices.

"BPHC is committed to addressing the historic, current and structural racism that results in inequitable access to health," said BPHC Executive Director Monica Valdes Lupi, JD, MPH. "We envision Boston as a city where all residents have equitable access to those things that promote health, including safe and affordable housing, living wages, education opportunities and healthy environments. Having members that reflect the communities we serve will be critical for shaping our future efforts." 

Residents, clients of BPHC's services and stakeholders representative of Boston's ethnic, linguistic, geographic, and culturally diverse population, are encouraged to apply before June 30, 2017. Members will actively participate in meeting discussions by sharing ideas and experiences, and representing the concerns and interests of their communities. Members will also serve as a resource for sharing information about public health with their community.

Members will receive a stipend for attending HEAC meetings and other community events, along with free leadership development and educational trainings to enhance personal and professional skills, and the opportunity to ensure that community perspectives and guidance are considered in policy, communications, data, and program design. 

To learn more about the Health Equity Advisory Committee (HEAC) and to download an application, due on Friday, June 30, 2017, please visit bphc.org or contact BPHC's Office of Health Equity at (617) 534-2376.​

May 22
Boston Celebrates National EMS Week

The Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) and Boston Emergency Medical Services (EMS) today announced they will celebrate the 43rd Annual National EMS Week by hosting a series of events designed to recognize the dedication of EMTs and paramedics.

"The men and women who serve as Boston EMTs prove their commitment to our residents and visitors everyday by providing the best, most compassionate care for those in need," said Mayor Martin J. Walsh. "I'm proud that Boston will spend this week celebrating those who serve their communities, and I'd like to thank our EMTs for their dedication."

As the city's municipal EMS provider, Boston's EMTs and paramedics respond to over 340 calls each day and over 125,000 emergencies annually. Throughout the course of the week, EMS will host several events to promote health and safety education in Boston's communities.

"Our EMTs provide exceptional care to residents in very hard situations, while supporting our public health programming here in Boston," said BPHC Executive Director, Monica Valdes Lupi, JD, MPH. "We are proud to play a key role in the city's emergency preparedness efforts, and will continue to work by responding to emergencies and educating the public about important health issues topics."

"The men and women of Boston EMS rise to the challenge every day to ensure our residents receive timely compassionate emergency medical care. It takes a great deal of commitment and dedication to work in the field of EMS, particularly in an urban setting such as Boston," said EMS Chief James Hooley.​

Events to commemorate National EMS Week include:

  • Tuesday, May 23: City Council National EMS Week Proclamation at City Hall; Boston EMS Community Event on City Hall Plaza (10 a.m. - 1 p.m.); CPR/AED Training at City Hall (2 p.m. - 3 p.m.)
  • Wednesday, May 24: Mattapan Community Day & Car Seat Event at 203 River St., Mattapan (1 p.m. - 4 p.m.); Light up the Night Orange & Blue for National EMS Week
  • Friday, May 26: EMS Family Appreciation Day
  • Saturday, May 27: Boston EMS Honor Guard will present the colors at the Red Sox game at Fenway Park

Boston residents and visitors are encouraged to take pictures of various commemorative efforts across the city and post them in social media using hashtag #EMSweekBOS and #EMSSTRONG.

May 19
National Hepatitis Testing Day

Millions of Americans have chronic viral hepatitis and most of them do not know it. Hepatitis Testing Day is an opportunity to remind people what hepatitis is and how important testing is.

Four Things You Should Know About Viral Hepatitis:

  1. Hepatitis A, hepatitis B and hepatitis C are all different diseases.
    Each type of hepatitis is caused by a different virus and spread in different ways. Hepatitis A (HAV) does not cause a long-term infection, but it can make people very sick. Hepatitis B (HBV) and Hepatitis C (HCV) can lead to chronic, life-long infections and cause serious health problems.
  2. Chronic hepatitis is a leading cause of liver cancer.
    Chronic HBV and HCV can cause serious damage to the liver, including liver damage, cirrhosis, and even liver cancer.  In fact, more than 60 percent of liver cancer cases are related to HBV or HCV.
  3. Most people with chronic hepatitis do not know they are infected.
    More than four million Americans are living with chronic hepatitis in the United States, but most do not know they are infected. Many people live with chronic hepatitis for years without symptoms or feeling sick.
  4. Get treated.
    Lifesaving treatments are available for chronic HBV and new treatments are available that can cure HCV.  

Who should be tested for HBV?

  • Pregnant women
  • People born in Africa, Asia and other areas with high rates of HBV
  • People who have sex with someone who has HBV
  • People with weakened immune systems​

Who should be tested for HCV?

Adults born between 1945 and 1965 (need to be tested at least once)

People who have ever injected street drugs, even if they tried it only once many years ago

People with certain medical conditions, such as people:

  • who got clotting factor concentrates produced before 1987
  • who were ever on long-term hemodialysis
  • with persistently abnormal alanine aminotransferase levels (ALT)
  • who are HIV positive

People who have had blood transfusions or organ transplants, including persons who:

  • were notified that they got blood from a donor who later tested positive for HCV
  • got a blood transfusion or an organ transplant before July 1992

Healthcare, emergency medical, and public safety workers that had a needle stick, sharps, or mucosal exposure to HCV-positive blood

Children born to HCV-positive women

 

Talk to a healthcare provider to find out if you need to be tested for hepatitis! For more information, visit: http://www.cdc.gov/hepatitis/RiskAssessment/  

May 18
Who Bikes Boston? Claiming Your Identity in Boston's Bike Culture.

Who Bikes Boston? Claiming Your Identity in Boston's Bike Culture.

Thoughts and Reflections on the panel

By: Angela Johnson, Program Associate, Transportation for MA, Panel Facilitator

 

NOTE: This is the first of six guest blog posts with reflections on Boston's first Neighborhood Bike Forum. The forum was held on April 29th in Dudley Square, Roxbury. It was sponsored by Let's Get Healthy, Boston! a partnership between The Boston Public Health Commission and Boston Alliance for Community Health, together with Boston Cyclists Union, Transportation for MA, Mattapan Food & Fitness Coalition, Roxbury in Motion and the Boston Project Ministries. 128 people attended this four hour event. Join the conversation #ibikeBOS #bikeyourhood

Bike culture and identity can be a dicey subject. But it was important to make it center stage at the Boston Neighborhood Bike Forum.

In the U.S., "bikers" are on motorcycles and "cyclists" ride very expensive racing bikes. "People who bike" was conjured up as a way to describe the people in the middle — those of us who are just on a bike, for any reason. Indeed, there's power in using this phrase, as popular perception has given the previous labels specific definitions, but I've always questioned why "cyclist" had to be so narrow in definition in the first place.

Now, let's add race and ethnicity to the conversation.

Racing cyclists are often perceived to be white, male, athletic, and of higher socioeconomic status. In reality, in regards to people who bike, they're the minority. The average person on a bike is Latino, male, and working class. Yet, unless he is suited in Lycra, he is a bike commuter, a person who bikes, or an "Invisible Cyclist", depending on both his socioeconomic and immigration status.

The primary goal of the "Who Bikes Boston" panel was to give an opportunity for residents of color to share their experiences biking in the city, and in a setting specifically conceived for us. The secondary goal was to debate who gets to be called a cyclist. But the underlying goal was to push back against this idea that folks of color, especially Black people, don't bike. Because we do.

From my own experience as an Afro-Latina, a cyclist, and as a transportation advocate, biking in Boston does feel quite white. For some, this perception can lead to feeling alienated in present bike spaces that associate bikes with a certain race and socioeconomic status. So, it was very important that the panel feature both speakers of color and a facilitator of color in order to foster trust. Michelle Cook, founder of Roxbury Rides, Peter Cheung, bike advocate and Boston Bike Party, and Farah Wong, Allston-Brighton Healthy Community Champion and Hubway user, each shared their unique experiences on Boston's streets.

During the panel, we tackled subjects relating to identity and why we choose to bike. On the topic of being a cyclist, some audience members preferred to identify as "people who bike," as they felt it was more encompassing than cyclist. Some liked cyclist, despite not being into racing — nor even owning a road bike.

What was most interesting was the fact that a few pondered on whether or not they wanted a moniker at all. Farah Wong noted that until I asked [if she called herself a cyclist], she never thought about biking being a part of her identity. For her, and for many people not just at the forum, but in general, a bike is just a way to get around.

Other viewpoints shared in the panel included a mother who was teaching herself to ride a bike because her nine-year son was becoming increasingly independent and was interested in riding on his own. She saw gaining this new skill as a bonding experience.

An older woman, translated from Spanish by her daughter, said that she bikes everywhere — rain or shine. A pre-teen boy said that he liked to bike for fun, especially with his friends after school. Another boy said that his West Indian parents are accepting of biking back home, but not in Boston. Here, they believe it is too dangerous. Another older woman, and known bike advocate, exposed gratitude for a discussion centered on biking as people of color, like herself. 

An adult Black male and youth advocate posed a question of whom bike infrastructure in Boston was meant for. He noted that other neighborhoods, like Jamaica Plain, Allston, and Back Bay, always received substantial infrastructural improvements before Dorchester, where he grew up. While he does like having bike lanes in his neighborhood, he is admitted to still feeling wary of the City. He feels that there's tension in his neighborhood now with bike infrastructure being proposed and what this will mean for housing affordability and for the culture of his immediate community.

The lack of time didn't allow for an answer, but it also was not the kind of question that could be answered immediately. Bike infrastructure should be for anyone who wants to use it. Bike lanes are not being striped solely for newcomers, but for neighborhood residents who are already biking or, like the mother and her son, want to learn how to bike safely. Yet, the perception of who bikes and what a cyclist looks like remains.

My hope with both the Boston Neighborhood Bike Forum, and the Who Bikes Boston panel in particular are that these conversations will continue. When the planning team started out, our end goal was to not have the forum be a one-off event, nor just an annual conference. Bike spaces are often white spaces and intentionally creating a place for people of color in Boston, and eventually beyond, to speak openly and honestly about biking in this city will improve communication with active transportation advocates, shatter stereotypes, and create a community for those who need it.

Finally, biking, like other forms of transportation, intersects many groups in different, yet sometimes interconnecting ways:

Like biking as a Black or Latino male and being afraid that you'll be racially profiled.

Like biking as a woman and whizzing past loud catcalls.

Like biking as a queer person and choosing to do so because it keeps the public from being able to quickly discern your gender or sexual orientation.

Like biking as an undocumented resident and wanting to stay as out of sight as possible.

Ask yourself: how does biking fit into your life as a resident of your community?


Resources

Bicycle Justice and Urban Transformation: Biking for all? (currently out of stock & quite expensive. If interested in specific chapters, reach out to the authors and they'll send you a copy!)

The New Movement: Bike Equity Today

The New Majority: Pedaling Towards Equity

Rethinking Term: "Invisible Cyclist"

Bike Lanes in Black and White

Silent barriers to bicycling, part I: Exploring Black and Latino bicycling experiences (II, III, and IV are below)

2015 Boston Bike Counts

 

Forward Thinkers on not just bikes, but race + active transportation, advocacy, and right to the city

Dr. Julian Agyeman @julianagyeman http://julianagyeman.com/ 

Dr. Adonia Lugo @urbanadonia http://www.urbanadonia.com/p/about_22.html

Dr. Stephen Zavestoski @smzavestoski

Tamika Bulter @TamikaButler

Do Lee

Sahra Sulaiman @sahrasulaiman http://la.streetsblog.org/author/sahra/​

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Boston Public Health Commission
1010 Massachusetts Ave, 6th Floor, Boston, MA 02118.
Phone:(617) 534-5395 Email: info@bphc.org