(BOSTON – 02/24/2023) State Senator Lydia Edwards, State Representative Adrian Madaro, and City Councilor Gabriela Coletta released the following joint statement regarding the disappearance of Ms. Reina Morales Rojas of East Boston:
“Ms. Reina Morales Rojas was last seen on November 26, 2022 in Somerville and has yet to be found. She was a recent immigrant from El Salvador and a resident of East Boston, a neighborhood we represent in our capacity as elected officials.
We wish to reaffirm our consternation over Ms. Morales Rojas’ disappearance and our solidarity with the families and community members who have been impacted by her absence. We are saddened and disturbed to know that she is still missing, and we are praying for her safe return. Ms. Morales Rojas’ disappearance underscores the need for due diligence in pursuing justice for women of color and the importance of ongoing dialogue and engagement between immigrant communities and law enforcement.
Since we became aware of Ms. Morales Rojas’ disappearance, we have been in constant communication with our colleagues in government, law enforcement, and community partners to offer resources and support for the investigation and those impacted by her absence. The outpouring of love and support that our neighbors in East Boston have shown to those affected by her disappearance is a testament to the strength of our community.
We are grateful to Mayor Michelle Wu and her staff for their direct support of Ms. Morales Rojas’ family and their attention to this case. We will continue to advocate for a timely resolution of Ms. Morales Rojas’ case with law enforcement, and we remain dedicated to ensuring all residents feel safe and secure in East Boston and the Commonwealth regardless of their background. We firmly believe that everyone deserves to feel safe and protected regardless of their race, national origin, or gender identity.
We understand this situation has been challenging for our community, so we wish to offer information about the following resources:
Massachusetts Office of Victim Assistance
MOVA provides assistance to crime victims and connects them with local providers available to assist them. If you are looking for local victim services or support, visit www.mass.gov/askmova.
The Massachusetts Behavioral Health Helpline
The Behavioral Health Help Line (BHHL) connects individuals and families to the full range of treatment services for mental health and substance use offered in Massachusetts, including outpatient, urgent, and immediate crisis care. The Massachusetts Behavioral Health Helpline is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year by phone call and text at 833-773-2445 (BHHL), and online chat at masshelpline.com.
National Human Trafficking Hotline
Have you ever exchanged sex for money, food, drugs or a place to stay? Has someone made money off of your body? You are not alone. There are a lot of people who care. Many of them have been through it, and they are here to help, whenever you’re ready. Call 1-888-373-7888 or text BeFree (233733) for help.
SafeLink is a free, confidential and multilingual statewide domestic violence hotline that is open 24-hours a day every day. You can talk to someone and be connected with a local sexual assault or domestic violence program. Call or text 1-877-785-2020.
Jane Doe, Inc.
Find more support for victims and survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence at www.janedoe.org/find_help/.”