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Dear Roundtable Members,
While May is annually recognized as Mental Health Awareness Month, this year the importance of mental health and the need to eliminate any stigma related to mental health is even more clear.
We have all endured a challenging past 12+ months. But thanks to the steadfast leadership and engagement of our Board, we continue to focus on our mission—how to strengthen the Commonwealth’s competitiveness and long-term economic vitality. Attracting and retaining talent continues to be a rising topic—and we have consistently heard from you that the new wave of support for talent must include resources that encourage wellness, mental health, and work-life balance.
The future of work continues to evolve—and so will the future of benefits. That is why, we will continue to discuss the importance of mental health including what policy solutions we as a Roundtable can develop or support, legislatively or within the business community. We look forward to hosting a conversation on this topic in our next Open Forum on Wednesday, June 2nd featuring leadership from Care.com for a discussion on their Future of Benefits Report based on responses from 500 C-Suite and HR executive nationally. Insight from these findings will help set the table as we dive deeper into this policy area in the coming months to address the long-standing needs as well as emerging needs and expectations of employees.
Interested in Mentoring High School Students this Summer? MBR Builds on Efforts to Support Youth EmploymentFree to employers: Given the direct impact of the pandemic on employment including youth summer jobs, the Roundtable is teaming up with Representative Chyna Tyler (D-Roxbury) to offer a unique solution for employers seeking in-person help this summer. Note, this effort is in coordination with the Boston PIC, which supports the Mayor’s Summer Jobs Program that many members participate in annually.
Specific to this opportunity in Roxbury, MBR is helping to guide the development of a 5-week employment opportunity that will be complemented by in-person curricula at Mission Safe, a Roxbury-based non-profit and participant in the city’s summer jobs program. By identifying and engaging employers seeking in-person employment, Mission Safe will be able to scale up its existing program and reach more students this summer. Free to employers, the stipend-based employment for 15 hours a week may include a wide range of opportunities from providing administrative support in the office to helping out at a small business to adding to seasonal employment at restaurants and retailers. Students will receive a stipend, a cost covered by the program. If you may be interested in learning more about this option, please contact Lauren Jones.
MBR Releases Findings from Member-Driven Future of Work and Competitiveness StudyThe Roundtable kicked off May by releasing findings following a survey of members and 1:1 interviews with members on the future of work and Massachusetts’ competitiveness. Among key findings, responses demonstrated a major shift from remote work pre-pandemic (90%) to some form of hybrid work post-pandemic (79%). The study also recognized trends from members on timing, office real estate and design, diversity, equity, and inclusion, digitization, and out-of-state considerations. READ the study along with a summary of the findings.
MBR Joins Advocates to Promote Career Vocational Technical Education
Keolis and BECMA Engage Roundtable Members in Latest Open Forums
Recognizing AAPI Heritage Month, MBR Shares Action Steps for EmployersIn recognition of May as Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, the Roundtable released six recommended action steps employers can immediately take to promote greater inclusion, stand up against racism, and be an AAPI ally in the workplace. Thanks to research gathered by Grace Lee, Roundtable member and SVP of Government Banking at People’s United Bank, the Roundtable was pleased to provide this resource to its members as part of its ongoing efforts through the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Task Force. READ the six action steps here.
MBR Wraps Up 4-Part STEM Education Speaker SeriesThank you to Roundtable members who joined as featured panelists and who attended a four-part speaker series on STEM/STEAM hosted by Kids in Tech and co-sponsored by MBR. The series covered topics including diversity, equity, and inclusion in STEAM; the importance of art in STEAM; the state of STEAM education; and the impact of STEAM on the future of work. A special shoutout to Lisa Freed of iRobot, outgoing member Jaime Paris Boisvert of Siemens, member Aisha Francis of BFIT; and Amy Bunszel of Autodesk for participating in this engaging series!
Berkshire Bank’s New CEO Outlines What’s Next
A snapshot of the two-day summit includes:
JUNE 29, 3:00–5:00 PM
JUNE 30, 3:00–5:00 PM
Senators push intergenerational care center ‘moonshot.’ Boston Business Journal (May 4, 2021). References MBR’s work on Early Childhood Education.
Weight loss app Lose It mulls 100% remote work in exchange for salary cut. Boston Business Journal (May 11, 2021). References MBR’s Future of Work Competitiveness Study.
Eastern Bank’s Foundation Announces Expansion Of Its Work. Business Wire (May 17, 2021). References Eastern’s support in partnership with MBR on the launch of the MA Business Coalition on Early Childhood Education.