Senate passes several bills, including support for Local Access TV

BOSTON – On June 28, Senator Cindy Friedman (D-Arlington) joined her Senate colleagues in passing a number of bills, including legislation that would require cable companies to provide High Definition (HD) capability to local Community Access channels to enhance the viewer’s experience and likelihood of accessing Public, Education and Government (PEG) programming.

“Keeping our residents engaged and informed is vitally important for the strength of our democracy,” said Friedman. “Making local news more accessible and appealing to our residents by switching to HD will boost civic engagement, allow our residents to have a more direct role in their communities, and benefit our Commonwealth as a whole.”

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Senate takes action to prevent wage theft

BOSTON– On June 21, Senator Cindy Friedman (D-Arlington) voted in favor of several bills, including legislation that would help prevent the illegal practice of wage theft and promote employer accountability. The bill, S.2327, gives the state greater power to go after wage violators and provides additional tools for the Attorney General’s office to hold violators fully accountable.

“Thousands of workers are stripped of their hard-earned wages every year in Massachusetts,” said Senator Friedman, a member of the Joint Committee on Labor and Workforce Development. “This illegal practice has continually impacted our workers, their families, and our communities, and it’s time for it to end. This important bill takes necessary steps to impose worker protections to prevent wage theft and hold employers accountable, ensuring that every worker receives the pay they are entitled to.”

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Angela Ortiz of Woburn named as an Unsung Heroine

BOSTON – On Wednesday, June 20, Angela Ortiz of Woburn was honored as a member of the Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women’s (MCSW) 2018 class of Unsung Heroines. Senator Cindy Friedman (D-Arlington) nominated Angela for this recognition because of her tireless efforts advocating on behalf of children with complex medical needs in the Commonwealth. Angela was honored with 130 other Unsung Heroines for her outstanding contributions to her community in a ceremony at the State House.

“I have had the pleasure of working with Angela to move important legislation forward in the State House to protect medically vulnerable children in the Commonwealth who require specialized in-home care to manage their complex medical conditions,” said Senator Friedman. “Time and time again, Angela has demonstrated her ability to fight for what is right and never back down on the issues she cares about. I’m so proud to represent such a caring and dedicated individual in the state Senate.”

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Sen. Friedman casts vote for “Grand Bargain,” raising minimum wage to $15 an hour and establishing a statewide paid family medical leave program

BOSTON—On June 20, Senator Cindy Friedman (D-Arlington) voted in favor of legislation that would raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour, establish a paid family and medical leave program, and create a permanent sales tax holiday. The bill, H.4640, is the product of months of deliberation between lawmakers, activists, and business groups.

“As our state becomes more expensive to live in, the need to ensure that our workers earn a living wage becomes more important,” said Friedman, a member of the Joint Committee on Labor and Workforce Development. “The compromise legislation passed by the Legislature will benefit low-income workers throughout the Commonwealth while providing a boost to our overall economy. This is a huge victory for Massachusetts working families and I’m so proud to have played a role in the ‘Fight for 15’!”

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Friedman shows support for clean energy future bill

BOSTON – On June 14, Senator Cindy Friedman (D-Arlington) joined her Senate colleagues in voting to pass S.2545, An Act to promote a clean energy future, sponsored by Senators Marc Pacheco and Michael Barrett. This legislation represents a firm stand by the Senate to ensure a healthier, cleaner Commonwealth for future generations of Massachusetts residents. Most importantly, the policies enacted in this legislation will have measurable benefits in the health of the global environment.

“At a time when our environment is under unprecedented attack at the federal level, it is vitally important for Massachusetts to take a stand to preserve our natural resources and address climate change,” said Friedman. “This bill ensures that our state continues to lead in clean energy efficiency by taking important steps to transition to cleaner energy sources, create high-paying jobs in the green economy, and protect our residents from the ongoing threat of global warming.”

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Friedman, Jehlen appointed to Pay Equity Special Commission

BOSTON – Today, Massachusetts Senate President Harriette Chandler (D-Worcester) appointed Senator Cindy Friedman (D-Arlington) and Senator Pat Jehlen (D-Somerville) to serve on the Pay Equity Special Commission. The special commission will investigate, analyze and study the factors, causes and impact of pay disparity, building on Senator Jehlen’s landmark equal pay legislation that was signed into law in 2016.

“I’m humbled and honored to be appointed to this commission by Senate President Chandler and am eager to work with the commission to address the wage gap and create equal opportunities for all workers in Massachusetts,” said Senator Friedman. “While we’ve made strides in our state in recent years to close the wage gap, there is still so much to be done. The persistent gender wage gap continues to impact the livelihood of many women, especially women of color, placing an enormous strain on families across the Commonwealth. My hope is that the work of this commission will get us one step closer to closing the pay gap and finally leveling the playing field for all workers in our state.”

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Elected officials secure funding to support Woburn infrastructure projects

BOSTON- On Wednesday, June 6, Representative Jay Kaufman (D-Lexington), Senator Cindy Friedman (D-Arlington), and Representative Jim Dwyer (D-Woburn) joined their legislative colleagues in passing H.4549, An Act providing for capital facility repairs and improvements for the Commonwealth, a compromise borrowing bill agreed to by both chambers.

“I’m pleased that funding to support the revitalization of the Ned O’Brien Ice Rink was included in the bond bill,” said Senator Friedman. “With these funds, we will be able to make necessary improvements to the facility’s infrastructure, enhancing the overall experience for the youth and families who utilize it on a regular basis.”

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Senate passes extreme risk bill to strengthen gun laws

BOSTON – On June 7, Senator Cindy Friedman (D-Arlington) joined her Senate colleagues in voting to engross H.4539, An Act Relative to Firearms. The bill, also known as the “Red Flag” bill or “ERPO” bill, allows a judge to order the immediate suspension and surrender of any license to carry firearms from an at-risk person when petitioned by that person’s family or household member.

“This bill is a commonsense measure that ensures Massachusetts continues to lead the way on gun control by empowering families and household members with an effective tool to prevent suicides and other gun deaths,” said Senator Friedman. “Moving forward, we must continue to look for more ways to protect the safety and security of our residents.”

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Lexington delegation secures funding for local projects in bond bill

BOSTON — On Wednesday, June 6, the Massachusetts House of Representative and Senate passed H.4549, An Act providing for capital facility repairs and improvements for the Commonwealth, a compromise borrowing bill agreed to by both chambers.

“This bill will benefit cities and towns across the Commonwealth by supporting important local infrastructure projects, including the development of a solar project at Minuteman High School,” said Senator Friedman (D-Arlington). “With these funds, we will be able to preserve, maintain and build facilities that are vital to our community.”

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