The end of the formal legislative session is fast approaching, and we need to make the most of these final weeks!

The legislature is currently considering two major bills: the economic development bill and the housing bond bill. Key amendments to these bills filed by our legislative champions in the State House have given us the opportunity to get some of our policy priorities all the way to the Governor’s desk.

Legislators will be debating the hundreds of amendments for both bills before the end of the week, which means they need to hear from you now! Please join us in taking action below to support Massachusetts youth and young adults.

Economic Justice Starts in Schools: Stop the Suspension and Expulsion of Students Because of What They Wear

School rules regarding grooming and dress continue to disproportionately target girls of color and LGBTQ+ students for punishment, reinforcing racist, sexist, homophobic, and transphobic norms in classrooms and pushing students with these identities out of school more frequently.

The effects of punitive school discipline are serious and follow young people into adulthood – students who are suspended or expelled become more likely to drop out of school, struggle to find employment, and earn lower wages overall compared to their peers who graduate. 

Rep. Fluker Oakley has filed an amendment to the economic development bill that acknowledges the way unfair school discipline contributes to long-standing educational and economic disparities by funneling already marginalized youth out of school and towards the criminal legal system. Amendment #184 would make rules related to student grooming and dress unbiased and objective as well as stop the suspension or expulsion of students for the perceived violation of these rules, an important component to keep girls of color and LGBTQ+ students in class and out of the school-to-prison pipeline.

Massachusetts students deserve welcoming, inclusive schools where they can show up as their authentic selves and thrive. Please take this one-minute action to contact your State Representative and urge them to co-sponsor and actively support Amendment #184 in the economic development bond bill!


Youth Experiencing Homelessness Must Have Access to Supportive Services

Minors may be experiencing homelessness alone for a number of reasons, such as abuse or family conflict over sexual orientation and gender identity. And while there are existing services that could help, current law prevents youth under the age of 18 from consenting to many of these services without a parent – despite the reality that seeking their parents’ consent is often not an option. 

When young people cannot access the services they need, they are extremely vulnerable to victimization and violence. As the 2022 Massachusetts Youth Count found, respondents who left home as minors were less likely to be sheltered, have a high school degree, or receive the help they need. 

Amendment #209, filed by Sen. Gomez, would ensure mature minors can access important services, helping youth between the ages of 15 to 18 meet their immediate needs and assisting them on their journey towards stability. Similarly, Sen. Kennedy’s Amendment #271 would support youth and young adults experiencing homelessness by allocating $10,000,000 in funding for housing and wraparound support services, an essential investment that reflects the scale of need across the state.

Massachusetts has seen a surge in youth homelessness over the past year and with queer and BIPOC youth disproportionately impacted, these amendments are critical to establishing increased supports for some of our state’s most marginalized young people. Please take this one-minute action and urge your State Senator to co-sponsor and actively support Amendments #209 and #271 in the housing bond bill!


Keep informed & stay involved!

Stay tuned for more opportunities to take action and support Massachusetts families and youth by liking us on Facebook and following us on X (formerly Twitter) and Instagram! Check out our website for our most recent news.

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Thank you for advancing social justice in Massachusetts!


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