Saturday, 2:15 PM
Harvard institute hails six innovative government programs in Mass.
By Globe Staff
A Harvard institute has included six Massachusetts programs on its list of the top 50 innovative government programs in America.
The Ash Institute for Democratic Governance and Innovation singled out:
-- The town of Barnstable's efforts to deal with residential growth;
-- A Boston program designed to prevent foreclosures;
-- A Boston schools program designed to prepare excellent teachers;
-- A Suffolk County program designed to prevent teen prostitution;
-- A state program to simplify the paperwork for affordable housing developments; and
-- A state program under which state facilities agree to reduce their electrical demand when the electrical grid is under stress.
"We commend the innovative initiatives of these Top 50 Programs," Gowher Rizvi, director of the institute at the Harvard Kennedy School, said in a statement. "In their path to finding new ways for doing the public's business better, these programs are paving the way for nationwide -- and even global -- reform strategies."
Suffolk District Attorney Daniel F. Conley said he was encouraged by the recognition for the Support to End Exploitation Now project, which, he said, brings together law enforcement agencies, social service providers, and other public and private organizations to assist girls and young women who are being exploited.
“The exploitation of youth through prostitution is something that our society cannot and will not tolerate,” Conley said in a statement. “These young girls need to know that there is a way out, that they will not be prosecuted for coming forward, and that they can get the help they need through a program created to help them break free from the adults who exploit them."
The Innovations in American Government Awards Program was established in 1985. The top 50 this year were selected from a pool of nearly 1,000 applicants.
Finalists will be announced on June 3. On June 12, the finalists will present their programs before a selection committee at a public event. The winners will be announced and honored in September.
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