Maldden alld a Vol. 30, No. 41 den AADD -FREECelebrating 30 Years as Malden's Local Newspaper! CTE CAT AT www.advocatenews.net Published Every Friday Salemwood School celebrates playground improvement 617-387-2200 Advocate Staff Report I f last week's City Council forum for the seats in Wards 1, 3 and 4 is any indication, it looks like it will be a spirited battle to the fi nish, culminating in the November 2nd General Election. All three incumbent ward Shown from left to right are Assistant Superintendent of Schools Emilys Peña, Ward 5 School Committee Member Adam Weldai, Ward 5 Councillor Barbara Murphy, Mayor Gary Christenson, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Ligia Noriega-Murphy, Malden Community Development Director Alex Pratt and Salemwood School Principal Van Huynh. (Photo Courtesy of the City of Malden) M ayor Gary Christenson and Ward 5 Councillor Barbara Murphy led city and school offi cials in celebrating the reopening of the refurbished Salemwood School playground, which has a new resilient safety surfacing and sensory play panels to engage students with differing learning needs. The officials were joined by Superintendent of Schools Dr. Ligia Noriega-Murphy, Assistant Superintendent Emilys Peña, Salemwood School Principal Van Huynh, Ward 5 School Committee Member Adam Weldai and Malden Community Development Director Alex Pratt. The project included removing the deteriorated mulch surfacing and installing a new resilient rubber safety surface and two new sensory play panels. Three additional play panels will be installed later this fall. The sensory play panels and the colorful surface design were chosen to enhance play for Salemwood students, especially children who are nonverbal. The project was initiated by Councillor Murphy, who contacted Salemwood School offi - cials to see if they had any projects for when the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding became available. The project is being administered by Malden’s Offi ce of Strategic Planning and Community Development and funded using CDBG funds and additional funds from Malden Public Schools. Malden Public Schools to install AAC Boards at all school playgrounds M ayor Gary Christenson, City Council President Neal Anderson, School Committee members Michelle Luong and Jennifer Spadafora along with School Superintendent Ligia Noreiga-Murphy, School Administrators, Disability Commission members, teachers and students were on hand for a ribbon cutting at the Early Learning Center to celebrate the installation of two Augmentative and Alternative CommunicaACC BOARDS | SEE PAGE 8 councillors running for re-election are facing opponents this year: Ward 1 Councillor Peg Crowe facing off against challenger Nadege Phillipe; Ward 3 Councillor Amanda Linehan versus challenger Glen Curtis; and Ward 4 Councillor Ryan O'Malley squaring off against challenger Jeff rey Donahue. Phillipe and Curtis are political newcomers. Donahue is a former Ward 4 City Councillor who served four terms from 2000-2008. The debate was hosted by Urban Media Arts (UMA), formerly MATV, and held live on September 30. Other debates included a second one aired lived on October 7 for Wards 5 and 6. A third debate will be livestreamed on the UMA website, https//urrbanmediaarts.org, on Wednesday, October 20 for City Council candidates in Wards 7 and 8. UMA's Guillermo Hamlin served as moderator. The roundtable debate featured questions submitted by The Malden Advocate, Malden Chamber of Commerce, Greater Malden Asian American Coalition (GMAAC), Chinese Culture Connection (CCC), and Malden High School's newspaper, The Blue and Gold. Each candidate made an opening statement, answered the submitted questions and then made a closing statement. Ward One challenger Nadege Phillippe was the only candidate not participating on Sept. 30, citing an unexpected work commitment in her position in the medical fi eld, In her opening statement, Ward 1 Councillor Peg Crowe cited her lifelong Malden roots as the daughter of an Irish immiE Friday, October 15, 2021 Malden Urban Media Arts hosts forum for Wards 1, 3 and 4 City Council seats Issues addressed include public safety, unity in Malden, Malden Hospital site, Maplewood Square grant father who along with her mother, a U.S. native, "instilled in me a desire to build relationships and help others." Crowe has worked at local non-profit Malden YWCA for more than 30 years, many as executive director. "I have been a community collaborator for many years. I believe Malden is on the right track and there is much work to be done," Councillor Crowe said. First-time political candidate and Ward 3 challenger Glen Curtis said. "I take great pride in being a Malden resident and Malden is the greatest place to live." A 30-year Malden resident, Curtis said, "I want to see the city grow." Curtis noted he lives "one street away from the Malden Hospital (site) and see it every morning when I wake up and each night I return from work. It is a waste of land and has been vacant for too long.""I'm not a politician — but I feel I can do something to make a difference and help develop the Malden Hospital site into something that will work for everyone." Incumbent Ward 3 Councillor Amanda Linehan, elected to her fi rst term in 2019, noted she began serving her fi rst term of elected offi ce just weeks ahead of the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. "No one could have predicted what was ahead of us — but we were shown that Malden is amazingly resilient. We banded together in ways we never could." "I love this job and I love this city," Linehan said, FORUM | SEE PAGE 15

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