Dedham votes down proposed expansion of catering company that feeds migrants

DEDHAM, Mass. — A no vote at a heated zoning board meeting in Dedham Wednesday night.

At the meeting, the Board was asked to decide on whether the town would allow a special permit to expand catering at a restaurant that’s been empty for two years by a company currently doing business in Dedham.

“We are currently serving over 400 of our guests now,” said one of the representatives of Giri Dedham which is part of Giri Hotel Management. The company owns several local hotels, nine of which currently house homeless and migrants as part of the State’s emergency assistance shelter program.

Giri Dedham requested a special permit to allow for a “kitchen-only” facility at the former Victory Grille on Elm Street.

The kitchen as of last Friday began preparing food for the four hundred residents housed by the state at the neighboring Fairfield Inn which they own.

The permit asked to expand that capacity to allow the company to prepare meals for other hotels it owns that are being used as part of the state’s emergency assistance shelter program.

Residents filled the room many saying they were concerned at how big this catering business would become.

“I do not think it’s the right spot. We are being closed in we are being suffocated,” said Carla Foley of Dedham. She and other people are concerned about traffic impacts and that the company was trying take advantage of the migrant situation.

“I think Just to make a dime off poor people in America is shameful,” said Maryann Martin of Dedham

One board member scolded the company saying they should have been better prepared trying to find a compromise that would have allowed food prep for a the Dedham hotel and a Norwood hotel but that was voted down 3 to 2.

The hotel representatives said they will start searching for another facilty.

The one they use in Quincy currently prepares 3000 meals a day distributed to nice hotels they own locally.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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