FY22 Health and Human Services Priorities
In FY22, the Health and Human Services Cabinet continues to build upon its existing services to meet the wide needs of the community through this year of recovery and renewal. The City is making significant investments in the Public Health Commission, a equitable and safe recovery for all, and youth jobs and opportunities.
Boston Public Health Commission
The Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) serves as the City's health department and provides emergency medical services (EMS), infectious disease surveillance, substance abuse prevention and treatment programs, community health programming, shelter and advocacy for homeless individuals, and home and school based health services for children and families. The FY22 budget has an increase of $4.2 million, ensuring these important services are well funded.
As part of a robust reopening and recovery, BPHC is strengthening its infectious disease response by adding operations and clinical staff to the Communicable Disease Control division and multilingual staff in Education and Community Outreach. The Commission is also enhancing employee support and safety efforts. Additionally, $250,000 will be invested to study and produce an after action report on the City’s response to COVID-19.
Inclusive Recovery and Equitable Future
As we reopen our city, we will address immediate needs and expand services for post COVID-19 programming. Investments are also centered on renewal and working towards a more equitable future for us all.
Boston Centers for Youth and Families (BCYF) will target a $500,000 investment in expanded summer programming to ensure youth can remain active throughout the summer. In addition, the FY22 budget kicks off #BCYFree, an initiative to make regular membership free for residents to ensure all Boston community centers are open to all residents. The City is also funding an additional $200,000 in Aquatics programming oversight and summer resources in early childhood education.
The Age Strong Commission will invest $250,000 in new events to encourage Bostonians to safely reconnect as the City emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Boston VETS, Commission for Persons with Disabilities, and the Office of Fair Housing and Equity will also have additional funding so that all our residents share in recovery efforts.
The Office of Food Access will see a $350,000 investment in efforts to address food insecurity with:
- Community Food Access grants,
- the expansion of the Boston Double Up Program, and
- a safety net awareness campaign to increase utilization of food assistance programs.
Youth Jobs and Opportunities
Youth Engagement and Employment (YEE) will continue to support a successful partnership with community-based organizations, and with a FY22 investment of $3.9 million will provide an estimated 5,000 summer jobs and 1,000 school-year jobs. Additionally, YEE will increase staff capacity and enhance relationships with community-based organizations and improve professional development for youth jobs participants.
This budget also includes $300,000 for Young Adult jobs in the Office of Health and Human Services. This funding will focus on targeted populations who have different needs from the traditional Youth Jobs program.
The Office of Public Safety will see a $100,000 investment in Operation Exit to assist young people returning from incarceration with aeronautics job training through the National Aviation Academy.
An additional $250,000 investment in the Youth Development Fund will increase violence intervention grants supporting community-based services to meet gaps in population, geography, and program targets.