HSTF plans youth jobs rally

The Hyde Square Task Force (HSTF) is doing its part in planning an annual rally to boost support for youth jobs on Feb. 20.

The rally will gather at the Old South Church then march to the State House to ask for state officials to support budget line items that will fund jobs for youths, HSTF spokesperson Vanessa Snow told the Gazette.

“Youths from all over the state come to the State House to ask for support,” she said.

The coalition is asking for support for $24.5 million in funding for three youth job programs. It is also asking that the Legislature to forward fund those three programs—YouthWorks Teen Jobs Program, School to Career Connecting Activities Teen Jobs Program, and Safe and Successful Youth Initiative—for next summer, so a supplemental budget will not be needed next May.

New City Health and Human Services Chief Felix Arroyo, a Jamaica Plain resident, will speak at the rally. He has attended and spoken at the rally in his previous capacity as At-Large City Councilor in past years.

According to a press release, the coalition has also contacted almost 400 companies, asking them to hire youths.

Last year, over 1,000 young people and allies attended the rally, organized by a coalition of different youth organizations, Snow said.

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