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District 5 City Council candidate Maria Esdale Farrell addresses the audience at English High School as candidate Ricardo Arroyo listens.

Arroyo, Farrell define positions on issues

The candidates in one of the city’s most tightly-contested city council races went head-to-head at English High School Monday, outlining their differences on issues ranging from education to affordable housing.

Public defender Ricardo Arroyo and Maria Esdale Farrell, a legislative aide to incumbent District 5 Councilor Tim McCarthy, debated for 25 minutes, giving one-minute responses to questions posed by moderator Tanisha Sullivan, president of the Boston Branch of the NAACP.

Arroyo spoke of his volunteer work with teenagers in a youth baseball league and the work he did finding services for his clients while working in the Committee for Public Council Services.

Farrell spoke about her volunteer work with youth programs, church-based programs and youth sports leagues in Hyde Park as well as her work on the Citywide Parent Council and other efforts to improve the Boston Public Schools.

“I was seeking a quality education for my children because I thought they weren’t getting one,” she said. “I dedicated my life to that cause.”

The candidates showed the greatest difference on rent control. Asked whether he would support such a measure, yes or no, Arroyo didn’t hesitate to say yes.

Farrell initially answered,

See DEBATE, page 6

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