DiDomenico Bills Advance Through Key Legislative Committees

Special to the Record

This month, almost every bill in the State Legislature received a favorable or unfavorable determination from their committee. Due to advocacy from Senator Sal DiDomenico and countless coalition advocates, many of the Senator’s legislative priorities advanced favorably and are moving on to the next committee. These bills tackle a wide range of issues from supporting working families in need, to providing the best education for our youngest generation, to making our government work better for people regardless of their background or spoken language.

“I am excited by the amount of progress we are seeing on my policy priorities that will improve the well-being of children and people in need across the Commonwealth,” said Senator Sal DiDomenico. “We could not achieve this success on so many life-changing proposals without the many advocates, community leaders, and residents who have stood up and used their voice to demand change from our government and I am grateful for all of their support. I also want to thank Senate President Spilka and all the Committee Chairs for advancing so many of my priorities with a favorable report.”

Below is a list of a few DiDomenico priority bills that have moved forward in the Legislature:

• Lifting kids out of deep poverty (S.75): increase cash assistance to families below 50% of the poverty line.

• Healthy Youth Act (S.268): require that when sex and relationship education is taught in school, it must be medically accurate, cover healthy consenting relationships, and be inclusive of all identities.

• The SUPER Act (S.160): empower more people to become behavioral health professionals, especially those who come from diverse backgrounds with a wide variety of experiences.

• Feeding our neighbors (S.76): restore state funded SNAP benefits to Massachusetts residents regardless of where they came from.

• Promote high-quality comprehensive literacy instruction (S.263): starts a conversation about how to improve reading and writing outcomes for our children.

• Establish a Massachusetts children’s cabinet (S.79): This legislation would create a Children’s Cabinet comprised of executive office Secretaries and Commissioners serving children to ensure our youngest generation is prioritized.

• Language access and inclusion (S.1990): expand the availability of non-English language applications and interpretation services at the state’s public-facing state agencies, such as MassHealth, the Department of Children and Families, and the Department of Unemployment Assistance.

• Expand access to pediatric palliative care (S.1359): increases the funding and age of eligibility for pediatric palliative care services to 22 years of age so young people most in need of care won’t ever be turned away.

• Reduce waste and recycling costs (S.471): require that manufacturers of packaging materials create systems for recycling those materials after being used which will reduce fossil fuel emissions and waste.

• Allow partial payment of driver’s license fines (S.2229): allow people to pay fines in partial payments so they can get back on the road safely (regardless of their income) and the state can collect more fines.

• Compensation for work-related scarring (S.1159): eliminate the requirement that compensation can only be given to employees when work-related scarring is exclusively on the workers’ face, hands, or neck and allow workers to access more comprehensive compensation.

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