Vinfen participated in The Caring Force’s Seventh Annual Rally and Lobby Day on April 10. Hundreds of people wearing The Caring Force gold shirts filled the Great Hall of Flags where the rally was being held inside the Massachusetts State House in Boston, MA. This year’s rally focused on two main action items: a student loan repayment plan for low-paid human services workers and eliminating the pay disparity between state employees and nonprofit human service workers who are performing similar jobs. More than a hundred persons served and staff from Vinfen attended to show their support and speak with their representatives about the important work done in human services. In addition, Vinfen’s Self-Advocacy group, which consists of individuals served by Vinfen, attended to learn more about advocacy at the state-level as well as being an informed voter.
State Senator Sal DiDomenico was awarded The Caring Bear Award. “We should do more for you every day so you can do more for us every day,” noted Senator DiDomenico as to why the student loan repayment program was so important. Representative Tricia Farley-Bouvier also received The Caring Bear Award. Representative Farley-Bouvier spoke about her first job being in human services, and she brought her well-worn gold shirt to show her continued dedication. In addition, Representative Jeffrey Roy introduced eighth-grader Brian Solis. Brian was invited to speak at the rally after he contacted Representative Roy’s office about his school project examining how the student loan repayment bill would help not only human services workers, but the people they serve as well. Lastly, Taylor Powers of Bay Cove Human Services and Jasmine Davis of Roxbury Youthworks shared their experiences of working in human services.
You can learn more about The Caring Force, by visiting their website.