Cambridge City Council Candidates Answer our Questions!

With City Council elections fast approaching it is time for CLF's biannual candidate survey. We asked each and every campaign to answer a series of questions to find where they stand on issues affecting the local and independent business community. The following candidates answered our survey in full. Please take some time to reach through their responses, and most importantly, make sure to vote on Tuesday, November 3, 2015!

Interested in becoming a Massachusetts state supplier?

Save the Date – Massachusetts Supplier Diversity Regional Series

Thursday, November 5, 2015

8:30 A.M. – 11:30 A.M.

Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center, 1350 Tremont Street, Boston, MA 02120

Join the state Supplier and Diversity Office for a morning of networking and workshops designed to provide capacity building and expanded procurement opportunities for the small and diverse enterprises currently conducting or interested in pursuing supply-chain engagements with state, municipal, or private buyers in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

The Series aims to develop a partnership between the Commonwealth, local municipalities, and private buyers that will assist small and diverse businesses.

The Series goals are to assist small and diverse businesses by:

  • Increasing the marketplace of business opportunities for small and diverse enterprises in Massachusetts;
  • Convening procurement representatives from state, municipal, and private organizations with small and diverse business owners;
  • Promoting networking between small and diverse businesses with buyers and key procurement decision makers; and
  • Providing small and diverse businesses with access to capacity-building resources.

The City of Cambridge will be hosting a table at the event, promoting Cambridge local businesses. If you are interested in getting onto the City’s vendor registry, please contact Pardis Saffari at To register as an attendee to this event and get yourself in front of state, municipal and private buyers, click here:


Cambridge Local First is a Leader in the National Local Economy Movement!

The Local Economy Movement (sometimes referred to as Local First or Buy Local Movement) officially began in 2001 when two national organizations were founded--the American Independent Business Alliance (AMIBA) and the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE). Since that time over 200 local networks have emerged, all with a common theme:

  • When a purchase is made at a locally owned business 48% of the money stays in the community whereas when made at a chain only 13.6% stays locally--buying local has 3X the impact on the local economy.
  • Local small businesses are the real job creators in this nation accounting for over 50% of all new jobs
  • Local businesses are essential to a vibrant community, contribute at a high level to local nonprofits, and they provide better customer service

Cambridge Local First is celebrating its tenth anniversary and has emerged as a leader in the national movement:

  • Cambridge Local First is one of the strongest networks in the nation comprised of 358 locally owned and independent businesses.
  • CLF's annual membership directory has connected residents with Cambridge businesses and this trailblazing publication has been used as a model by communities throughout New England and the nation.
  • With CLF taking the lead the Cambridge City Council for many years has approved a resolution making Cambridge a Local Economy Community and promoting Cambridge Local Economy Week on November 8-14, 2015.
  • CLF has been active in local government and has worked closely with City of Cambridge officials to find every opportunity to make life easier for local businesses.
  • Cambridge is blessed with several local independent banks--three headquartered in Cambridge. CLF has successfully encouraged residents, businesses, and the City to `Move Your Money' to our local communities and to keep our money in Cambridge.

We are lucky to live in the great City of Cambridge! Cambridge Local First is a big part of making Cambridge a terrific place to live and work and local business leaders look to CLF for inspiration. By supporting Cambridge Local First and choosing to consider local first when making your purchasing decisions you are helping build a strong local economy!

Laury Hammel, Founder and ED of the Sustainable Business Network and Co-Founder of BALLE

A Letter from Co-Founder, Laury Hammel

Dear Cambridge Local First Friends,

It has been an honor and a pleasure to have played a leadership role in the development of Cambridge Local First. I am confident I am leaving Cambridge Local First in good hands and that CLF is poised for a fantastic future. This feels really good!

I have been a resident of Cambridge for over 15 years and I plan on living in this wonderful community for many years to come. Cambridge is my home! I will look for any way to support the work of CLF and to connect with this important organization and my good friends. In fact, I was honored to be invited to write an article about the national local economy movement for the monthly newsletter and I look forward to this as an excellent way to keep in touch and to contribute.

I am the founder and the Executive Director of the Sustainable Business Network of Massachusetts which is headquartered in Central Square. We look forward to working with Cambridge Local First and six other Local First networks that we work closely with to grow our local economy movement.

Thanks to everyone for all you do for our community and our planet!

With gratitude,
Laury Hammel

Massachusetts Department of Industrial Accident’s Training

What can keep your employees healthier, happier, on-the-job, and possibly help with your Workers Compensation premium?

The Massachusetts Department of Industrial Accident’s / Office of Safety promotes workplace safety and supports employers with Workers Compensation insurances, providing assistance for the prevention of occupational injury, illness and death in the workplace.

One of their main efforts is to promote on the job training to employees, in all relevant topic and behavioral/performance areas through a safety training grant program. The program is designed to provide and improve safety education and training to employers/employees within the Commonwealth, covered by the Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Law. A summary of the program can be seen here.

The Workplace Safety Training & Education Grant Program Application program promotes safe and healthy conditions in the workplace by awarding state funds to eligible applicants, annually. The training grants allow employers to select the training areas, and the training providers that best fit their needs, be they based in governmental requirements such as OSHA or EPA, or in those areas that most affect their employees that may not be specifically required by regulation.

FY16 Grant Application and Contractual Documents with instructions are provided on line and grant up to $25,000 in support, for employers who are in Good Standing with the MA Department of Revenue

The speakers will be Kathleen Manson, Director of the Commonwealth’s Department of Industrial Accidents. She will explain the overall grant program’s history, processes, and features, as well as how it can be of value to you and your employees.

The other speaker will be William Trabilcy, Principle at Engagement By Design/EHS Works, a consulting practice in support of workplace safety and compliance. He will discuss aspects of training design and effectiveness, and address typical occupational safety risk areas where training/learning/performance can make a difference. He has extensive experience in workplace health, safety and environmental management, OSHA compliance, risk management, and is a speaker at national conferences on training effectiveness and learner engagement.

for more information, contact: