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Boston Votes to Remove Emancipation Memorial in Park Square

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A unanimous vote on Tuesday by the Boston Art Commission means the famous Emancipation Memorial — depicting President Abraham Lincoln with a freed slave — will come down.

The statue celebrates the Emancipation Proclamation, which Lincoln signed in 1863 and declares “that all persons held as slaves” within the Confederacy “are, and henceforward shall be free.”

A petition calling for the removal of the statue received over 12,000 signatures as of Wednesday. The move to take down the art comes in the wake of George Floyd‘s death and a push for statues deemed racist to be taken down across the nation.

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh gave his full support for the removal of the statue and thanked the commission for their work.

“After engaging in a public process, it’s clear that residents and visitors to Boston have been uncomfortable with this statue, and its reductive representation of the Black man’s role in the abolitionist movement,” Walsh said in a statement.

According to CBS Boston, the commission has not set a removal yet and the group is determining how to “re-contextualize” the statue in a new public setting.

“Public art is storytelling at the street level. As such, the imagery should strike the heart and engage the mind,” said Vice-Chair of the Boston Art Commission Ekua Holmes in a statement. “What I heard today is that it hurts to look at this piece, and in the Boston landscape we should not have works that bring shame to any groups of people, not only in Boston but across the entire United States.”

The monument has stood in a park near Boston Common since 1879 and is a replica of the Washington D.C. Emancipation Memorial statue.

The inscription on the statue reads: “A race set free/ and the country at peace / Lincoln / Rests from his labors.”

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Health Industry Distributors’ Association: Supply Chain Delays ‘A Healthcare Issue’

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The Health Industry Distributors’ Association (HIDA) released harrowing data stating “Transportation Delays Are A Healthcare Issue.” HIDA’s December release states, “research estimates that approximately 8,000-12,000 containers of critical medical supplies are delayed an average of up to 37 days throughout the transportation system.”

The statement continues, “The West Coast port with the greatest number of delayed medical containers are the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles. The most congested East Coast port is the Port of Savannah.”

An infographic is accompanied with the statement which breaks down the crisis further. 17 is the average number of days the shipments are delayed at the Port. There’s an 11 day average delay by rail, and a 9 day average delay by truck.

In those shipping containers, the infographic states 187,000 gowns, 360,000 syringes and 3.5 million surgical gloves are held. The ports with the most medical delayed supplies are Los Angeles/Long Beach, Savannah, New York/New Jersey, Charleston, Seattle, Oakland, Boston, Baltimore and Houston.

Axios reports under a “Why it matters” headline, that “Per their projections, medical supplies arriving at a U.S. port on Christmas Day won’t be delivered to hospitals and other care settings until February 2022.”

As a result, “that could delay critical supplies at a time when health care is already expected to most need them due to surges from Delta and Omicron.”

Additionally, “The supply chain problems can compound, starting with medical supplies languishing in U.S. ports for an average of 17 days, officials said.”

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