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2015-2016 Supported Bills

To view a list of priority legislation that NASW-MA and members are lobbying for in the 2015-2016 legislative session, view NASW-MA's Legislative Agenda.
VIEW 2015-2016 LEGISLATIVE AGENDA

For questions, contact Christine Poff, MSW, Director of Director of Government Relations and Political Action at (617) 227-9635 x12 or poff@naswma.org.

Supported Bills

Below is a list of bills that NASW-MA supports and are not part of the Legislative Agenda. 

  • Terminally ill patient's right to compassionate aid in dying
    (HB 1991)

    Establishes the right of a terminally ill patient to request aid in dying from a physician and obtain medication the patient can administer to bring about death; sets out the form of written request the patient must make; requires two witnesses to the signed request; outlines the responsibilities of the prescribing physician; requires mandatory counseling for the patient; requires informed consent of the patient; sets out requirements for medical record documentation; invalidates provisions in wills, contracts and other legal documents that would prohibit aid in dying; indemnifies actions taken by health care providers under the new statute.
    LEAD SPONSOR: Representative Louis Kafka 

  • HIV-associated Lipodystrophy Treatment
    (SB 618, HB 927)

    This bill requires private insurers, MassHealth, and the Group Insurance Commission to provide medical treatment for lipodystrophy, a disfiguring side-effect of lifesaving, but highly toxic, HIV medications.  Lipodystrophy is the abnormal distribution of body fat which creates “visible disfiguring and stigmatizing morphological changes”.  While there are inexpensive, effective medical treatments for lipodystrophy, insurers routinely deny claims for treatment on the basis that they are cosmetic and not medically necessary.
    LEAD CO-SPONSORS: Senator Mark Montigny and Representative Sarah Peake 
    FACT SHEET

  • Conversion Therapy Ban
    (HB 97)

    This bill would prohibit any efforts by licensed professionals who counsel minors from attempting to “change” the sexual orientation or gender identity of a minor. Prohibits any professional licensed under this section from engaging in sexual orientation and gender identity change efforts with a patient under the age of 18.
    LEAD SPONSOR: Representative Kay Kahn
    FACT SHEET

  • Transgender Nondiscrimination Protections
    (SB 735, HB 1577)

    This bill would add “gender identity” to existing Massachusetts civil rights laws for public accommodations, which currently allow for the exclusion of transgender people.  This legislation would add “gender identity” to existing Massachusetts civil rights law for public accommodations, which currently prohibit discrimination on the basis of age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, sex, and marital status.
    LEAD CO-SPONSORS: Senator Sonia Chang-Diaz and Representative Byron Rushing
    FACT SHEET

  • Justice Reinvestment Act
    (SB 64, HB 1429)

    An omnibus bill backed by a large coalition of community, religious, and union organizations, to improve Massachusetts’ systems of criminal justice, end mass incarceration, and re-invest in our schools and in job-creation. Our neighborhoods are filled with people who cannot find life-sustaining work. Our prisons are filled with people who suffer from addiction or trauma, and people who struggled in school, yet they are serving long mandatory minimum sentences that do not address the underlying problem. 
    LEAD CO-SPONSORS: Senator Sonia Chang-Diaz and Representative Mary Keefe
    FACT SHEET

  • Sentencing alternatives for non-violent primary caretakers of dependent
    (HB 1382)

    This bill calls for the establishment of community-based sentencing alternatives for primary caretakers of dependent children charged with non-violent crimes, with the goal of alleviating the harm to children and primary caretaker parents caused by separation due to incarceration of the parents, while reducing recidivism and strengthening family unity and communities.
    LEAD SPONSOR: Representative Russell Holmes 
    FACT SHEET

  • Transparency, best practices, and better outcomes for children and communities
    (SB 905, HB 1436)

    Juvenile Justice Omnibus Bill developed by Citizens for Juvenile Justice and the Juvenile Justice Reform Coalition.  Reclassifies offenses and diverts low level kids from formal system processing in order to save money, reduce crime, and promote best practices to get kids on the right track.
    LEAD CO-SPONSORS: Senator Karen Spilka and Representative Kay Khan
    FACT SHEET

< Back to Government Relations

4/28/2015

National Association of Social Workers - Massachusetts Chapter
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tel: (617)227-9635 fax: (617)227-9877 email: chapter@naswma.org
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