Walsh declares racism a public health crisis, transfers $3 million from police to health department

Michael P. Norton
State House News Service

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh declared racism as a public health crisis Friday and cited COVID-19 numbers in making the announcement.

“I want to declare racism to be a public health crisis in the City of Boston,” Walsh said during a press conference outside city hall. “The health impacts of historic and systemic racism are clear in our COVID-19 case numbers and the impacts go far beyond the current crisis.”

Walsh said that as part of the declaration he’s transferring $3 million from the police department’s overtime budget to the Boston Public Health Commission. There were two new COVID-19 deaths in Boston and 44 new confirmed infections in the city, Walsh said. So far, the city has attributed 673 deaths to the respiratory disease, and 13,118 confirmed cases. –

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