• Thu. May 23rd, 2024

State AG isn’t investigating Boston mayor’s ‘electeds of color’ party

Byusanewscart.com

Jan 2, 2024

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Massachusetts Attorney General Andrea Campbell is not investigating the Boston mayor’s “electeds of color” holiday party after discrimination complaints were filed. 

Earlier this month, Mayor Michelle Wu’s office sent an email invitation to city hall staff to an “Electeds of Color Holiday Party,” first reported by the Boston Herald, that was meant only for six city council members “of color” but was sent to all councilors, including seven who are White.

The attorney general received four complaints against Wu, the first Asian American mayor of the New England metropolis, for the party, citing public accomodation law violation concerns.

But a spokesperson for the attorney general said her office “has no open investigation into this event.”

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A collage of Boston Mayor Michelle Wu, left and attendees at her "people of color"

Boston Mayor Michelle Wu and attendees at her “people of color” party. (Instagram | Barry Chin/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

Campbell’s office has received four complaints about the event, three of which were filed by people out-of-state and a fourth who did not confirm a state of residence. 

The Massachusetts Public Accommodation Law prohibits, among other things, “making any distinction, discrimination, or restriction in admission to or treatment in a place of public accommodation based on race, color, religious creed, national origin, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, deafness, blindness, or any physical or mental disability, or ancestry.”

The Attorney General’s Office has declined to investigate, saying that since the event was not open to the public, it cannot and does not violate the public accommodation law.

Wu immediately garnered backlash for the event, but has so far defended it. 

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Mayor Michelle Wu

Boston Mayor Michelle Wu is the first Asian American to hold that office. (Matt Stone/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald via Getty Images)

Her assistant, who mistakenly sent the email invite to all staff, sent a followup email 15 minutes later saying: 

“I wanted to apologize for my previous email regarding a Holiday Party for tomorrow. I did send that to everyone by accident and I apologize if my email may have offended or came across as so. Sorry for any confusion this may have caused.”

Wu, who was asked about the party by reporters, defended her assistant, telling reporters in the following days, “I think we’ve all been in a position at one point where an email went out and there was mistaken recipients so there was truly just an honest mistake.”

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Andrea Campbell

Democratic Massachusetts Attorney General Andrea Campbell (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File)

Asked if hosting a party excluding White elected officials would be appropriate, Wu responded that there are a number of parties where everyone is invited, including White councilors.

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“There are multiple ways that we celebrate with everyone. There are several holiday parties that the entire city council and all of our elected colleagues have been invited to,” she said, according to the Boston Herald. 

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