The Common-logo

The Common

News & Politics Podcasts

Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


United States


Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.




What to do this month: Craft your way into spring

March is the month that brings us spring, at last! But it's also a long month, with no observed holidays to give us a break. To help motivate us all to get out and explore this March, WBUR Assistant Director of CitySpace Candice Springer joins The Common with three DIY craft classes that offer an opportunity to learn a new creative skill. Candice recommends... Bonsai BarTutu Land BostonIn House Baking SchoolCelebrating accessibility in the artsField Trip: Karaoke Night Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


Conservancy group and residents filed suit to halt White Stadium plan

The Emerald Necklace Conservancy and 16 area residents recently filed a lawsuit to stop a proposal to renovate White Stadium in Franklin Park. They say the plan is “unconstitutional,” fearing that this public facility will be privatized and made inaccessible to the public. The city said the claims are without merit and the renovation will expand the number of usable hours for student-athletes and the community. Seth Daniel, news editor for the Dorchester Reporter, joins The Common to break down the controversy around the White Stadium renovation plan and its significance to the neighborhoods. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


Brockton High School and the National Guard

Earlier this month, four members of the Brockton School Committee called on Governor Healey to bring in the National Guard to calm campus violence amid understaffing at Brockton High School. The idea has split the school community, with many expressing the desire to not militarize the school, while others say the response is appropriate to help manage a situation, which includes fighting and open drug use among students, that has spiraled out of control. Boston Globe Great Divide reporter Chris Huffaker has been following the story. He joins The Common to break down the situation inside Brockton High School, and what bringing in the National Guard could mean for students and teachers. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


Massachusetts' child welfare system is getting a change in leadership

The Massachusetts child welfare system is looking at a huge leadership change across its ranks with several key leaders stepping down this year. Advocates and former foster kids in the state see it as an opportunity to overhaul the overburdened system that impacts the lives of more than 86,000 children and adults across the state. Boston Globe Reporter Jason Laughlin joins The Common to break down the calls for change and what’s behind them. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


Gov. Healey and her pick for the Supreme Judicial Court

Governor Maura Healey’s pick to fill the vacant seat on the state's Supreme Judicial Court could be confirmed as soon as Wednesday. Judge Gabrielle Wolohojian has an impressive judicial record, having served as an appeals court justice for 16 years. However, one piece of her background has been a sticking point through the confirmation process – the fact that she was at one point a long-term romantic partner of Gov. Healey. WBUR State House Reporter Walter Wuthmann joins The Common to discuss Judge Wolohojian's background and if confirmed, what her ties to the governor mean for the state's highest court. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


Pediatricians and the fight to prevent teen overdose deaths

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends offering buprenorphine, a medication that can help curb opioid cravings, to teens addicted to opioids. However, only 6% of pediatricians currently offer the drug, in part because some believe that they do not have the right training or staffing to provide this care. Today, WBUR reporter Martha Bebinger brings The Common to a pediatrician's office in Uxbridge, Massachusetts, and discusses the role pediatricians can play in preventing drug overdose deaths among adolescents. If you or someone you care about is struggling with addiction and may be at risk of an overdose, you can call the Massachusetts Overdose Prevention Helpline at: 1-800-972-0590. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


New England's stone wall obsession

There are the Patriots, the Red Sox, the Celtics... and the stone walls. That's right. Many New Englanders are absolutely enamored by the approximately 100,000 miles of stone walls, relics of early settlement, that dot the woods and roadsides of our region. Today, Hanna Ali, WBUR associate producer for newsletters, joins The Common to tell us more about how these historic stone walls came to be, and why they've captured the hearts of so many in Massachusetts and beyond. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


Milton votes "no" on multifamily rezoning plan

Update: Ed Augustus, the state's housing secretary, sent a letter to Milton town officials Wednesday morning saying the town failed to comply with the MBTA Communities Act, and as a result, the Healey administration will immediately stop sending "significant grant funding" to the town. Read the full letter here. Last week, residents of Milton voted down a plan that would have allowed for the development of more multifamily housing. The vote puts Milton at odds with the MBTA Communities Act -- a state law that aims to tackle the housing crisis by requiring communities with MBTA access to create new zoning plans allowing for higher density housing. Today, Boston Globe Housing Reporter Andrew Brinker joins The Common for a look at what happened in Milton, and what this community's response can tell us about the appetite for tackling the state's housing crisis. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


Immigration debate intensifies in Mass. politics

Immigration and border security have long been hot-button issues in national politics. Now, with concerns mounting over the state's overstretched family shelter system, where nearly half of the people housed are migrants, asylum-seekers or refugees, immigration is becoming a firey point of conversation in state and local politics, too. WBUR Senior Political Reporter Anthony Brooks joins The Common to discuss how the immigration debate is entering and informing political discourse on Beacon Hill and beyond. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


From the newsroom: Voices, not vinyl

Team Common is off today, so we’re bringing you a story from our friends in the WBUR newsroom. We'll be back with our regular show tomorrow. Today’s story comes from Arts Reporting Fellow, Solon Kelleher. It’s about a jukebox in Cambridge, redesigned by artist Elisa Hamilton to play stories from people in the community instead of music. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


With mobile sports betting, youth gambling is off to the races

Online sports betting was legalized in Massachusetts just over a year ago. Since then, Bay State gamblers have wagered almost $5 billion dollars. Additionally, while it's illegal for people under the age of 21 to gamble in Massachusetts, mental health and addiction workers have noted an uptick in teens and young adults seeking help for compulsive gambling. Today on The Common, Boston Globe Addiction Reporter Chris Serres breaks down the surge in youth gambling and how online gambling apps are fueling this growing problem. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


The women of Boston's Black Panther Party

Through June of this year, Boston's Museum of Fine Arts is displaying 27 images taken by Stephen Shames of the women at the heart of the Black Panther Party. WBUR Reporter Arielle Gray set out to review the exhibit, titled Comrade Sisters: Women of the Black Panther Party, and was struck by one photo in particular -- it shows a group of five unnamed teenage Black Panther volunteers, four girls and one boy, taken right here in Boston. Today on The Common, Arielle tells us about how she managed find the young people in the photo and what she learned about their experiences with the Boston chapter of the Black Panther Party. Note: A previous audio version of this episode stated that the Museum of Fine Arts is free on Wednesdays. This is no longer true. The MFA offers $5 minimum, pay what you wish tickets after 5 p.m. on certain dates, including upcoming dates on March 14 and May 16. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


Reduce, reuse, pee-cycle

The Cape has a dirty water problem. The main culprit? Pee. Over the years, waterways around Cape Cod have been increasingly impacted by peoples' septic tanks, which leach nitrogen and phosphorus -- from urine -- into the Cape's ground water. This, in turn, leads to unhealthy water quality and toxic algae blooms that are dangerous for humans and wildlife alike. Municipalities around the Cape are now looking for solutions that will keep their tourist-attracting bodies of water clean and pee-free. Among them, as WBUR Climate and Environment Correspondent Barbara Moran tells us, is one innovative method known as pee-cycling. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


How Haitian migrants are finding their way to Mass.

Massachusetts’ strained shelter system has been struggling to keep up with an influx of families who are in need of housing. But where are these families coming from? Senior Health and Science Reporter Gabrielle Emmanuel set out to answer that question in a new story for WBUR. She found that roughly half of the families seeking help through the state family shelter system are newly arrived migrants, mostly from Haiti. Also, this is not the first time they’ve had to start over somewhere new. Today Gabrielle joins The Common to tell us more about the journey these families have endured on their way from Haiti to Massachusetts. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


No Valentine's Day dinner reservation? No problem.

This one's for all you last-minute romantics out there. While Boston is famously a reservation-first dining city, there are no shortage of walk-in-friendly restaurants available to accommodate your procrastinated Valentine's Day plans -- no matter what kind of vibe you're going for. Today, Erika Adams, editor of Eater Boston joins The Common to walk us through six of her top reservation-free dining picks in Greater Boston. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


These Mass. cities are calling for a ceasefire in Gaza

As the devastating war in Gaza continues, dozens of cities across the U.S. have passed resolutions in support of a ceasefire. Those cities include Chicago, Seattle, and our very own Somerville, Cambridge and, as of this week, Medford. Leila Farsakh, professor of political science at UMass Boston, joins The Common to discuss what can be drawn from the successes of these resolutions, and what they may tell us about changing public opinion regarding the ongoing war in Gaza. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


It's back to school following Newton teachers strike

After two full weeks of canceled school, the Newton Teachers Association and Newton School Committee reached a deal on a new four-year teacher contract late last week. The final contract includes increased pay for paraprofessionals, a promise to staff additional social workers in the district and longer parental leave, among other measures. WBUR Senior Education Reporter Carrie Jung joins The Common for a look at the longest teacher strike in recent memory, and for a breakdown of what made it, and didn't make it, into the final contract. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


Grab your towel, we're hitting the City Hall Plaza sauna

Have you ever dreamed of putting on your swimsuit, zipping up your winter coat, and heading downtown for a free sauna experience with friends and previously-unknown neighbors? If so, we've got the story for you. Through March 3, Winter City Sauna, a free pop-up sauna, is posting up on Boston's City Hall Plaza and offering visitors the opportunity to warm up in community (up to six people at a time!) just steps away from City Hall. When we saw this headline, we knew we had to check it out - so Common Producer Katelyn Harrop hopped on the T, towel in hand, to learn more about this place-making effort lead by Somerville-based community organization CultureHouse in partnership with the city of Boston’s Mayor’s Office of Arts & Culture. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


Why it's so challenging to get a liquor license in Boston

For those opening full-service restaurants, a liquor license can be a key part of creating a sustainable business. But in the city of Boston, getting your hands on such a license can cost anywhere from $400,000 to $600,000 on a private market. One that exists due to a shortage of licenses available through the city. Today, Boston Globe Magazine contributor Erick Trickey joins The Common for a deeper look at why it can be so financially challenging to get a liquor license in the city, and how this system disproportionately impacts small businesses and Black entrepreneurs. Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.


What to do this month: Survive Valentine's Day

We can all take a collective sigh of relief that we survived January. Next up: Valentine's Day. Whether you and your boo are looking for a cozy day at the movies, or you're looking to impress a new date with a wild night of Saltburn-inspired hijinks, or just for an opportunity to sing your heart out to Broadway tunes and revel in your own self-love, WBUR Assistant Director of City Space, Candice Springer, has you covered. Candice recommends... The Before Trilogy (part of Destination Romance) – Saturday, Feb. 11 at The Coolidge Corner Theatre Field Trip: Monogamous Speed Dating (25-35) – Monday, Feb. 12 at WBUR CitySpace An Evening at Saltburn – Wednesday, Feb. 14 at Rebel Rebel Wine Bar Happily Ever After: A celebration of romance novels and the authors behind them – Thursday, Feb. 15 at WBUR CitySpace Broadway Rave – Friday, Feb. 16 at Brighton Music Hall Greater Boston’s daily podcast where news and culture meet.