CITY OF WORCESTER

Public Health and Human Services Committee Meeting

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Levi Lincoln (North) Chambers

Convened: 5:06 P.M.

Adjourned: 5:58 P.M.


Mayor
Joseph M. Petty

 

www.worcesterma.gov

 

Clerk of the City Council
Susan M. Ledoux

Committee Members

Chairperson Sarai Rivera
Councilor Sean M Rose
Councilor Kathleen M Toomey
 

City Hall - 455 Main Street Worcester, Massachusetts


Present Were:Chairperson Councilor Sarai Rivera Councilor Sean M Rose Councilor Kathleen M Toomey
 
Also:Chief Diversity Officer Suja Chacko; Medical Director Michael P. Hirsh; Commissioner of Health and Human Services Matilde Castiel; Assistant City Clerk Stephen A.J. Pottle, clerk
 
1.

Communications of the City Manager

1a.

Transmitting informational communication relative to an update on how many of the chronically homeless individuals are from Worcester. # 10.20A CM July 23, 2019

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Rivera read the Item and moved to take the Item up collectively with Item #1c, which was approved on a voice vote. Chairperson Councilor Rivera recognized the Commissioner of Health and Human Services, who provided information concerning the Items, including a statement that about 609 of the 722 homeless individuals served by the City of Worcester consider Worcester their place of origin. Chairperson Councilor Rivera recognized Councilor Toomey, who raised concerns about individuals from outside of Worcester being brought to Worcester for services. Chairperson Councilor Rivera stated that a number of larger cities with services in place for homeless individuals see an influx of people with various places of origin.

Chairperson Councilor Rivera offered the following Chairmanís Order, which was expanded on by Councilor Toomey and Councilor Rose: Request City Manager request Commissioner of Health and Human Services facilitate a meeting with the various directors of detox facilities in the city to discuss homeless services in the city. Further, request City Manager collect data concerning individuals who are brought to and from Worcester by SMOC, to determine whether the city should discuss reciprocity programs with other communities. Motion approved on a voice vote.

Chairperson Councilor Rivera recognized Councilor Rose, who offered the following Chairmanís Order: Request City Manager provide City Council with information concerning how the public can best support efforts to combat homelessness being taken on by Quinsigamond Community College. Motion approved on a voice vote.

Chairperson Councilor Rivera moved to recommend placing both Item #1a and Item #1c on file. Motion approved on a voice vote.

Recommend File

Chairman's Orders

Request City Manager request Commissioner of Health and Human Services facilitate a meeting with the various directors of detox facilities in the city to discuss homeless services in the city. Further, request City Manager collect data concerning individuals who are brought to and from Worcester by SMOC, to determine whether the city should discuss reciprocity programs with other communities.

Request City Manager provide City Council with information concerning how the public can best support efforts to combat homelessness being taken on by Quinsigamond Community College.

1b.

Transmitting informational communication relative to the formation of affinity groups for City of Worcester employees. # 10.36A CM July 23, 2019

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Rivera read the Item and recognized the Chief Diversity Office, who spoke in regards to how employee retention practices align with issues concerning public health. The Chief Diversity Officer also spoke in regards to the cityís decision to implement affinity groups and that they were chosen because they are employee lead groups.

Chairperson Councilor Rivera spoke in regards to the importance of diversity in the city and with the cityís employees, including how strong retention practices will aid that effort. Chairperson Councilor Rivera then recommended the City Manager for his work on his work for supporting diversity in the city.
Chairperson Councilor Rivera recognized Councilor Toomey, who spoke in regards to supporting the Women Empowerment Group, and whether City Councilors would be able to attend the meetings.

Chairperson Councilor Rivera moved to recommend placing the Item on file. Motion approved on a voice vote.

Recommend File

1c.

Transmitting informational communication relative to the homeless population of Worcester college students and programs to address this issue. # 9.17A CM May 7, 2019

Attachments

See Item #1a

Recommend File

1d.

Transmitting informational communication relative to the status of the HUD Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes Grant. # 10.4C CM March 26, 2019

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Rivera moved to take the Item out of order, which was approved on a voice vote. Chairperson Councilor Rivera read the Item and recognized the Assistant City Clerk, who recommended the Item be held in order to allow for the Item to be heard on a date the Communicationís author would be able to attend. Chairperson Councilor Rivera moved to hold the Item. Motion approved on a voice vote.

Recommend Hold

1e.

Transmitting informational update on the City's efforts to curb Hepatitis A Outbreak and other communicable diseases. # 10.17A CM March 26, 2019

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Rivera read the Item and moved to take the Item up collectively with Item #1f, which was approved on a voice vote. Chairperson Councilor Rivera recognized the Commissioner of Health and Human Services, who provided information concerning the Items, including a statement about various outreach efforts being taken by the city to curb Hepatitis A outbreaks.
Chairperson Councilor Rivera recognized Councilor Rose and Councilor Toomey, who both commended the city staff on the various efforts.

Chairperson Councilor Rivera asked if there were any speakers who would like to make a statement concerning the Item. Seeing none, Chairperson Councilor Rivera moved to recommend placing both Item #1e and Item #1f on file. Motion approved on a voice vote.

Recommend File

1f.

Transmitting informational communication relative to a report concerning any and all actions being taken by the city in regards to the Hepatitis A outbreak. # 8.17A CM January 22, 2019

In Committee March 28, 2019 - Held

Attachments

See Item #1e

Recommend File

1g.

Transmitting informational communication relative to an opinion as to whether or not the city can set the operating hours for recreational and medical cannabis facilities. # 9.13A CM August 21, 2018

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Rivera moved to take up the Item out of order, which was approved on a voice vote. Chairperson Councilor Rivera read the Item and moved to recommend the Communication be filed. Motion approved on a voice vote.

recommend File

1h.

Transmitting informational communication relative to the Worcester Division of Public Health's Office of Emergency Preparedness Hazard Vulnerability Assessment exercise. # 9.17A CM June 18, 2019

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Rivera moved to take up the Item out of order, which was approved on a voice vote. Chairperson Councilor Rivera read the Item and recognized the Medical Director, who spoke in regards to the various meetings throughout the city taking place in regards to disaster planning.

Chairperson Councilor Rivera spoke in regards to the relationship between public health and public safety in emergency preparedness.
Chairperson Councilor Rivera recognized Councilor Toomey, who raised concerns regarding cyber security attacks, and whether the city would be prepared for attacks of that nature.

Chairperson Councilor Rivera moved to recommend placing the Item on file. Motion approved on a voice vote.

Recommend File

1i.

Transmitting informational communication relative to the City's participation in the Central MA Mosquito Control Project (CMMCP) for FY 19 and FY 20. # 9.17B CM June 18, 2019

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Rivera moved to take up the Item out of order, which was approved on a voice vote. Chairperson Councilor Rivera read the Item and moved to recommend the Communication be filed. Motion approved on a voice vote.

Recommend File