Last night (Friday) the House of Representatives joined the Senate in passing historic and sweeping reform to police oversight, training, certification and certain practices. While the approach of our bill differed from the Senate in many ways, they share the same goals. The branches will likely establish committees that will conference in an attempt to resolve the differences in our approach.
I voted in favor of this bill because I heard the voices of our Black and Latino friends and neighbors, the Native and Asian members of our community, who described their fear each time they are confronted by police. Maybe the officer does not intend to put them in fear. Maybe the approach is reasonable, but the fear is real and it is understandable. These residents, young and old, explain how they are approached by police while driving more often than the rest of us. They explain how in many towns and cities they receive looks of suspicion for simply being there. Like my parents told me and I told my son, they tell their children to respect the police. But they also tell their children to fear the police. And they give their children “the talk” about keeping their hands in plain view, and not asking questions.
Read the full article on the Bedford Citizen.
(7/9/2020) – Representative Ken Gordon (D-Bedford) joined his House colleagues to pass a bill that strengthens the laws that ensure the safety and well-being of the Commonwealth’s youngest and most at-risk residents. The legislation strengthens the Department of Children and Families (DCF) policies and operations, develops a tool to retain and recruit foster families, holds DCF accountable for timely, accurate and relevant reports, and clarifies communication by the Child Advocate to the Legislature and state officeholders. It was crafted to address the needs of vulnerable children and families that have been amplified by the COVID-19 public health crisis and further illuminated through the lens of racial equity.
A new bill that was just passed in Massachusetts will allow for greater voter access during this fall’s elections that includes early vote-by-mail.
Representative Ken Gordon and Senator Cindy Friedman joined their colleagues in the Massachusetts Legislature last week to pass a bill that expands voter access and ensures voters have safe voting options for all remaining 2020 elections, including the September 1 state primary and November 3 general election, in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, a joint release from their offices says. The bill was signed into law by the Governor on July 6.
Read the full article on BCAT.