Rep. Gordon Provides March 31 COVID-19 Update – Extended Stay-at-Home Advisory, Essential Services Order

As the number of Massachusetts residents testing positive for the COVID-19 virus continues to grow, Representative Ken Gordon (D-Bedford) provided further updates to his district.  There were 868 new residents testing positive for the virus in Massachusetts on March 31, the date of this writing, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 6,620. So far, 89 people in the Commonwealth have died from the disease, 33 new fatalities reported today. The vast majority of those who succumbed were elderly or had preexisting health conditions. So far 46,935 patients have been tested.


Among the fatalities were six residents of the Holyoke Soldiers Home.  In all, 13 cases were reported on Sunday. The COVID-19 Command Center, led by Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders, vowed first to be sure every patient is receiving proper care at the facility, and then get to the bottom of how so many unreported cases existed at the facility. Rep. Gordon sent his sincere sympathy to their family, and to all veterans.  He will lend his support to all efforts to determine how these veterans were exposed to the virus without notice.

Further updates related to the Coronavirus and its effect include new information concerning an extension to the current order shuttering in-person services at non-essential businesses, and to unemployment insurance.

Governor Charlie Baker issued an extension of the stay-at-home advisory and emergency order requiring that all businesses and organizations that do not provide “COVID-19 Essential Services” close their physical workplaces to the public until May 4.

Residents are again advised to stay home and avoid unnecessary travel and other unnecessary person to person contact during this time. Residents who are considered at high risk when exposed to COVID-19 should limit social interactions with other people as much as possible. Further, gatherings of more than 10 are prohibited until May 4. The Department of Public Health provides the following stay-at-home reminders to residents:

  • Only leave your home to address essential needs. You may leave your home for exercise, including taking walks, but avoid unnecessary contact with other individuals.
  • You can still run essential errands such as going to the grocery store or pharmacy but practice social distancing. If you are at high-risk, you should inquire about your local pharmacy/grocery store’s alternative hours for high risk individuals.
  • When going to the pharmacy you should fill your prescriptions for 90 days if possible; for some medications this is not allowed. If you are at high risk, you should try to use a mail-order service.
  • Non-essential medical care like eye exams, teeth cleaning, and elective procedures must be rescheduled.
  • If possible, health care visits should be done through tele-medicine.
  • Parents should not arrange for visits with other children during this time.
  • All individuals must eliminate close contact activities such as in pick-up sports.

Rep. Gordon also provided an update regarding unemployment insurance for those not traditionally covered under Massachusetts law, such as self-employed individuals and those paid through 1099s. The federal government recently passed the CARES Act, which will authorize the states to extend unemployment compensation to individuals who have not traditionally been covered. However, the state Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA), which administers unemployment benefits, is awaiting guidance from the U.S. Department of Labor regarding the program’s requirements. As soon as federal guidance is received, DUA will move quickly to accept applications from these groups. In the meantime, Rep. Gordon urges constituents to remain patient and check here for updates:

Other updates that have not previously been posted regarding the COVID-19 emergency include:


  • Gordon scheduled another virtual office hours session for Thursday, April 2nd from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. Any Burlington resident is invited to join the call. His office will share call-in information on Wednesday explaining how to join. If you are unable to join the call but would like to contact the Representative, you can reach him at or 617-722-2575.
  • The Governor announced new efforts to support the health care system and increase access to testing. At the request of the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, the Federal Strategic National Stockpile approved a 250-bed field medical station in the City of Worcester. The station will be used to monitor patients who are not in acute distress, which will open hospital beds for more serious cases. Governor Baker also announced a pilot project that will allow symptomatic residents of nursing and rest homes to be tested quickly on-site.
  • The Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary education, Jeffrey C. Riley, sent a letter to families that included recommendations for remote learning along with updates on MCAS testing, required days of school, special education, school meals, and other important topics. Read the Commissioner’s letter on the Department of Education website.
  • Those who are healthy, feeling well, and eligible to give blood or platelets are encouraged to donate as soon as possible. The current crisis led the Red Cross to cancel a number of blood drives across the Commonwealth and now there is a shortage of life-saving blood products. Appointments can be made through the Red Cross Blood Donor App, by visiting org, or by calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
  • Gordon reminds residents to take care of their mental health during this challenging time. Those who are feeling overwhelmed can seek emotional support by dialing 2-1-1 and choosing the “CALL2TALK” option, reaching out to the 24/7 Samaritans helpline at 877-870-4673, or by calling the 24/7 toll-free, multilingual, and confidential Disaster Distress Helpline at 1-800-985-5990.




New Lowell to Burlington shuttle opens job opportunities

The Lowell Sun

Employers in Burlington hope that a new Lowell to Burlington shuttle will help them tap into the city’s labor pool.

The shuttle launched last week after years of research and planning. For years employers, particularly restaurants, in Burlington have struggled to access a labor pool large enough to fill their job openings, and for years Lowell has struggled with the opposite problem – connecting residents with a wider job pool.

For the full article click HERE.

Middlesex 3 Coalition Discusses Transportation Challenges and Potential Solutions

The Bedford Citizen 

As part of their Business Leadership Series, the Middlesex 3 Coalition (M3) held a panel discussion on transportation policy and legislation on September 26.  The meeting provided the attendees with a chance to hear and discuss various perspectives on the current state of transportation challenges along the Route 3 corridor and to consider an innovative combination of potential solutions to make real progress and reverse the steadily worsening local and commuting transportation picture in the area.

For the full article click HERE.

Burlington’s State Representatives Express Support for Bill that Features $1.5 Billion in Local Education Investments


Burlington’s representatives in Boston say they are happy with a new bill that would increase spending in location education and reconfigure how Chapter 70 funds are allocated.

“State Representative Ken Gordon (D-Bedford) joined Senator Cindy Friedman (D-Arlington) in lauding the efforts of House and Senate leaders after the Student Opportunity Act was released by the Joint Committee on Education,” a release from Gordon’s office states.

For the article of the click HERE.

State Rep. Ken Gordon announces bid for 4th term

Burlington’s state representative announced on Tuesday that he will be seeking a fourth term in office.

“It is my honor to serve the people of Bedford, Burlington and precinct 3 in Wilmington in the legislature, as I have for the past seven years,” Rep. Ken Gordon (D-Bedford) said in a newsletter to constituents. “Much has been done, but with the authority gained by my time in office, I am in a position to do more. With that in mind, I look forward to re-election as your State Representative in November of 2020. I ask for your support and your vote.”

To read the full story on BCAT’s site click HERE.

Rep. Gordon behind organization of vigil and call-to-action

BCAT/The Bedford Citizen 

The Interfaith Clergy in Burlington and Bedford, along with  State Rep. Ken Gordon (D-Bedford,) held a vigil to remember those lost in recent mass shootings in El Paso, Gilroy and Dayton. This, combined with a call-to-action to help move forward the push for gun law reform took place on the Bedford Town Common Wednesday, Aug. 14, with a crowd of almost 50 in attendance.

For the full video from the evening click here HERE.To read more about the event, click HERE.

State budget includes funds for Burlington restaurant workers shuttle

Burlington has restaurants and those restaurants have jobs. Lowell has people who need jobs. Bringing those two groups together is the spark behind an initiative supported by state legislators, business leaders, and local towns.

The fiscal year 2020 state budget, which recently passed the House and Senate, contained $125,000 earmarked for a Lowell-to-Burlington shuttle service which will transport potential restaurant workers from their homes in Lowell to Burlington and back home again.

For the full story click through to the Burlington Union’s website HERE.

Mass House approves $1.3 Billion for community climate resiliency projects

The Massachusetts House of Representatives is taking aim at climate change with the support of Burlington’s representative.

“As climate change becomes a larger concern at the local level, State Representative Ken Gordon (D-Bedford), joined his colleagues to fight the ongoing, negative effects of global warming,” a release from his office states.

To read the full post on Burlington Cable Access Television’s site click HERE.