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New ALS ONE license plate launched

Flanked by a mock-up of a new charitable Massachusetts license plate, Governor Baker and Lt. Governor Polito joined leaders in ALS research and care from across the Commonwealth to celebrate the unity and commitment to work together to expedite the path to find a treatment for the disease and improve care for those diagnosed. Governor Baker spoke to the great work done by former Governor Paul Cellucci, who’s widow Jan was in attendance, and Pete Frates, who’s parents, wife and daughter were present, and the Ice Bucket Challenge in bringing both awareness and critical research funding to the cause. Lt. Governor Polito, who also reflected on the Cellucci family’s contributions, honored Kevin Gosnell, the visionary founder of ALS ONE that saw disparate research and advocacy groups across Massachusetts and brought them all together to form a united front against the disease.

Governor Baker visit Nashoba Valley Winery

When the Nashoba Valley Winery in Bolton was facing a threat of losing part of its business and closing up shop due to a change in regulation interpretation, Governor Baker worked with legislative leaders to add a provision to the economic development legislation he signed into law in August to rectify the situation. As WBUR summarizes, the provision in the bill refers to entities with a farmer-winery license. The relevant section says a local licensing authority may grant to any person with a farmer-winery license another license to sell its alcohol for on-the-premises consumption. On Tuesday, Governor Baker stopped by the winery to see the vineyard and restaurant, and to visit with staff and patrons.

With Governor Baker’s signature, Billerica is officially Yankee Doodle Town

The Billerica Minuteman reports:

Hundreds of residents gathered on the front steps of the Billerica Public Library Tuesday, Sept. 27 as Governor Charlie Baker officially designated Billerica the state’s Yankee Doodle Town.

Residents Mike and Carol Rosa petitioned the town, and then worked with state officials, to get this legislation passed.

“I would like to thank Representative Lombardo for working hard with Senator Donnelly to get this legislation passed so that we can sign it and basically deliver something that everybody else already knew,” said Baker. “Billerica is in fact the Yankee Doodle town.”

Governor Baker, state officials open new youth residential center

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Governor Charlie Baker, Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders, Administration and Finance Secretary Kristen Lepore​ and Department of Youth Services (DYS) Commissioner Peter Forbes, together with other state and local officials, opened ​and toured a new 45-bed residential facility serving youth involved in the juvenile justice system in the Northeast region of the Commonwealth. The Northeast Region Youth Services Center will further support the Commonwealth’s long-term public safety efforts through effective rehabilitation for DYS-involved youth. Youth from the Northeast region, who were previously located to other communities in existing programs in other locations across the state, will now receive services closer to their home communities.

“The Northeast Region Youth Services Center represents our commitment to changing the life trajectory of the youth involved in the juvenile justice system,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “The staff and programs at this facility demonstrate a strategic investment in programs and strategies that are most successful at reducing recidivism and promoting positive life outcomes for these young people of the Commonwealth.”

The new two-story, 72,000 square-foot residential building will accommodate up to 45 youth in three residential programs. Each wing houses 15 youth in three separate residential areas – secure detention, secure treatment and revocation. The facility serves young men ages 13-21, and will provide educational opportunities, counseling services, and structured residential programming designed to promote self-reliance and successful reintegration into their communities.

Lt. Governor Polito speaks at first of its kind training conference to assist adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities recover from sexual abuse

Lt. Governor Polito, who chairs the Governor’s Council to Address Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence, attended and spoke with the more than 250 state officials and professional attending a series of trainings coordinated by the Disabled Persons Protection Commission. Patty Quatieri, a survivor of sexual assault and chairperson of Massachusetts Advocates Standing Strong (“MASS”), and others are working together to assist sexual assault survivors in accessing trauma services.

“Many of the Commonwealth’s programs aimed at addressing sexual assault serve as national models, and we are proud to see the steps DPPC, MASS and others are taking to provide training and close accessibility gaps for individuals with disabilities,” noted Lt. Governor Polito. “It is encouraging to see so many agencies working together to provide justice and healing for this vulnerable population.”

The trainings are focusing on the fact that persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities, like Patty, are assaulted at 4 times the rate of the general population and that they are specifically targeted because of their disabilities. Persons with disabilities are less likely to be believed and therefore less likely to receive trauma services.

Danish Royal Couple welcomed to the State House

Governor Baker and Lt. Governor Polito welcomed the Danish Royal Couple, His Royal Highness Crown Prince Frederik and Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Mary, to the Massachusetts State House on Friday. The couple is leading a delegation of 60 Danish companies from the health care, agriculture, sustainability and maritime sectors — all of which are important economic sectors in Denmark.

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