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Tuesday, December 13, 2022

 

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

 

Recently, staff members in my office attended the 5th Biennial New England Women’s Policy Conference at the Edward M. Kennedy Institute. The conference focused on promoting women’s leadership, especially among young women and women of color, and topics such as anti-racism. This event engaged women on current issues and motivated women to take action with potential solutions through a series of speakers, discussions, and networking opportunities. Guest speakers included Rachel Rollins, the first woman in Massachusetts history to serve as the US Attorney for the District of Massachusetts, Rollins advised attendees to “Run for office. If you can’t do that, help run a campaign. If you can’t do that, write a check.” Women tackled policy topics including the long-term effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, reproductive justice, gun violence, economic security, climate justice, and early care and education. Events such as this conference are important to gender equality by motivating women to pursue solutions to pressing issues and encouraging women to be leaders in a time when women are still underrepresented.

 

Yours in service,

 

Denise

 

District Updates 

 

The temperatures are dropping and many of us are thinking about turning on the furnace. I share your concern about high heating costs this winter and would like to share with you information that may help ease the financial burden of paying heating costs this winter. For more information and resources, click here.

Interested in serving your community? Several committees in the Town of Dover, Medfield, and Needham are seeking volunteers to serve and contribute to the community. s work towards solving complex issues and recommending policies that help shape their towns. Click your town to see available volunteer opportunities: DoverMedfieldNeedham.

  • In Needham, Needham’s Col. William McIntosh Chapter DAR will be hosting a Wreaths Across America ceremony at Needham Cemetery on Saturday, December 17 at noon. Participants will lay over 400 wreaths on the graves of veterans of all wars as far back as the American Revolution. If you would like to learn more about the event, click here.
  • In Dover, the Kenneth Gloss of the internationally known Brattle Book Shop will be giving an in-person presentation on Wednesday, November 14. The presentation will begin at 6:30 PM at the Dover Town Library. For more information about the event and tickets, click here.
  • In Medfield, the Medfield Lions is having their annual Christmas tree sales every Thursday to Sunday until December 18. Christmas tree sale profits will all be donated to Lions charities or local Medfield charities. Sales will be at the St. Edward Church back lot. This will be the last weekend of the Lion’s Christmas tree sales! For more information on the event and hours, click here.

 

 

Statewide Updates

 

  • Massachusetts Department of Public Health reports rising rates of respiratory illnesses in infants and children across the state. Seasonal illnesses such as RSV, rhinovirus, and influenza are more likely to infect children as they have limited previous exposure to these viruses. The Department of Public Health recommends vaccines as the best way to prevent illnesses this season. To learn more about the Department of Public Health’s recommendations, click here.
  • To secure health insurance coverage through Health Connector effective January 1st, payments must be submitted by December 23rd. Health Connector officially launched its Open Enrollment period for 2023 on November 1, 2022, and will run through January 23, 2023. Health Connector will be hosting a virtual informational seminar on Wednesday, December 14 at noon. To register for the free seminar, click here.
  • A $130 million loan repayment program will be available to the behavioral health and primary care workforce. The loan repayment program is a significant step in addressing the healthcare workforce shortage. Applications will be open in December to qualifying employees including social workers, and primary care physicians. Loan repayment awards will range between $12,500 to $300,000 per individual depending on their eligibility. The current application cycle is open until January 30, 2023, to acess the application, click here.
  • The Commonwealth Restorative Justice Community Grant application is open until December 14 at 4 PM. This grant is available to nonprofit organizations that provide community-based restorative justice programs with low-income communities within the Commonwealth. To learn more about the Commonwealth Restorative Justice Community Grant, click here.
  • The Center for Disease Control (CDC) expands updated COVID-19 vaccines to children ages 5 – 11. The updated COVID-19 boosters add Omicron BA.4 and BA.5 spike protein components which restore protections from previous vaccinations by targeting more trans