Additional COVID-19 Information and Resources

This page will provide you with a variety of information and resources relating to the public health emergency caused by the coronavirus. Please note that public policy is rapidly developing as is the relevant available information.  And therefore as this situation develops, I will update this page as new information becomes available. As always, please feel free to email me at Dave.Rogers@mahouse.gov, call or text me on my cell phone at (617)817-9395 or call our office at (617)722-2637. Calls to the office number will be forwarded to our cell phones.

Governor Baker has declared that all nonessential businesses will be close until May 4th. Grocery stores, gas stations, pharmacies, manufacturers of medical products, restaurant take-out, the MBTA, and other essential services will remain open. While this is not a strict shelter in place order, please stay home! Only leave the house if you work in an essential service or to get groceries and medicine. You can also get out for fresh air and exercise but during such times, please observe appropriate social distancing (6 feet between you and others). Please also check in with your elderly and immune-compromised friends and neighbors to go shopping for them.

You can read the Governor’s order here: https://www.mass.gov/…/march-23-2020-essential-se…/download…

You can read a list of essential services here: https://www.mass.gov/doc/covid-19-essential-services/

Fill out this form to request that the service your business provides be deemed as essential for purposes of the Emergency Order.

Orders from the Governor
Schools
While a difficult and disruptive decision, it was no doubt made with the best public health information in mind. And so the Governor has decided to close all public and private schools through the end of the school year and non-essential childcare programs are also closed until June 29th. The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) will be issuing updated remote learning guidelines soon. The Massachusetts Department of Higher Education (DHE) is deferring scheduled repayments for its No-Interest Loan Program for student loans for four months. Check the DESE website for forthcoming updates on distance learning: http://www.doe.mass.edu/covid19/
and check the DHE website for information on student loan deferment: https://www.mass.edu/osfa/programs/nointerest.asp

In conjunction with the additional period of school closures, state Education Commissioner Riley provided guidance found here: http://www.doe.mass.edu/sfs/emergencyplan/covid19.html

Resources for Educating Children at Home:

Social, Emotional, Behavioral, and Mental Health Resources
Supporting Families During COVID-19 (Child Mind Institute)

SEL Resources for Parents, Educators & School Communities Related to COVID-19 (Inside SEL)

How to Talk to Kids About Coronavirus (New York Times)

Remote Learning

Free tools, strategies, tips and best practices for teaching online (Learning Keeps Going)  

Day-by-day projects to keep kids reading, thinking, and growing (Scholastic)

Free curriculum for keeping kids engaged (TERC)

List of Best Educational Videos, Shows, and Podcasts (Fordham Institute)

Tips for making this time more meaningful and less stressful for educators and kids (Center for Collaborative Education)

How parents can keep kids busy (and learning) in quarantine (The Atlantic)

Free online tools and classes (American Federation of Teachers)

WGBH Distance Learning Center

Mental Health Resources

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, National Helpline, Disaster Distress Helpline

The Massachusetts Department of Mental Health, multilingual resources for coping with mental illness during the COVID-19 pandemic.

NAMI Massachusetts COMPASS provides a mental health resource

The Grayken Center for Addiction at Boston Medical Center hosts COVID-19 specific resources for seeking addiction care

Network of Care Massachusetts is a multilingual, comprehensive statewide online resource for information on mental health and substance use support

Alcoholics Anonymous has some resources for virtual meetings

Governor Orders Closing of DCR Athletic Fields and Courts
The Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) has temporarily closed athletic fields and courts, such as basketball, tennis, handball, pickle ball, and bocce, throughout the state parks system, under an order by the Governor. DCR has also extended the closure of agency-owned ice rinks, visitor centers, campgrounds, playgrounds, fitness areas, and bathroom facilities.


Gatherings and Restaurants
Governor Baker also issued an order concerning restaurants and public gatherings. Until May 4th, large gatherings of 10 people or more are prohibited. Also, restaurants will be closed for on-premises consumption of food and drink. Delivery and takeout options will still be permitted as long as social distancing protocols continue to be followed and at this difficult time, I would encourage our community to support our local small business owners to the extent possible. 

Healthcare
Under another order issued on Sunday, commercial insurers and the Group Insurance Commission (GIC) will be required to cover medically necessary telehealth services. Telehealth is “the use of electronic information and telecommunications technologies to support long-distance clinical health care.” These insurers will also be required to fully cover all COVID-19-related testing and treatment. 

Massachusetts Health Connector
The state marketplace for health insurance is making some changes due to the COVID-19 public health crisis.

  • In response to the outbreak of COVID-19, the MA Health Connector has extended its open enrollment period to May 25, 2020.
  • Individuals who have lost their jobs and their job-related healthcare coverage may be eligible for coverage under the MA Health Connector.
  • Information about enrollment and coverage can be found here

Registry of Motor Vehicles

The Massachusetts RMV has been ordered to extend the renewal timeline of certain credentials including Class D, Class DMs, ID Cards and Learner’s Permits. A 60-day extension will be granted to customers with credential expiration dates between March 1, 2020 and April 30, 2020. This extension, however, does not apply to vehicle registration.

Starting March 24th, an appointment-only reservation system is being implemented for certain necessary and required in-person transactions at the RMV. These essential transactions include certain Commercial Driving License transactions and some new registrations. Appointment reservation times will be available on a rolling basis up to two business days in advance on www.Mass.Gov/RMV in the myRMV Online Service Center under “Make or Cancel a Reservation.” 

All passenger and motorcycle road tests have been canceled. CDL tests will still be conducted as scheduled.

Small Businesses
The Governor also announced the creation of a $10 million loan fund for small businesses, with fewer than 50 employees. Frankly, this amount seems inadequate and I will be in discussions as to other assistance the state can do for small businesses. Clearly, significant economic dislocation is coming. This is precisely the kind of scenario in which the government must intervene aggressively to mitigate the downside consequences. To apply visit this website.

Small Business Tax Relief

Governor announced measures to provide administrative tax relief for small local businesses that have been impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak, in particular in the restaurant and hospitality sectors.

  • For small businesses (defined as those who paid less than $150,000 in the year ending in February 29, 2020 in sales, meals, or room occupancy taxes) the collection of those taxes will be postponed for March, April, and May.
  • Those taxes will now be due on June 20, 2020.
  • All penalties and interest that would otherwise apply will be waived.

Here is a general webpage with Guidance and Directives from the administration.  

Legislative Updates
I have co-sponsored a number of important pieces of legislation addressing the ongoing public health emergency. On March 12, the House and Senate both voted to approve a supplemental budget to create a $15 million fund in response to the outbreak of COVID-19 in Massachusetts. The fund will go towards monitoring, treatment, containment, public awareness and prevention through the Department of Public Health, local boards of health and other relevant public entities.

I have also co-sponsored, An Act to Provide Short-Term Relief for Families in Deep Poverty. This bill provides one-time supplemental cash assistance to Massachusetts’ 30,000 families with children who receive Transitional Aid to Families with Dependent Children (TAFDC) benefits and 19,000 elders and persons with disabilities who receive benefits under the Emergency Aid to Elders, Disabled and Children (EAEDC) program.

My colleagues and I have advocated from the start of this crisis for immediate access to funding to address the threat to public health. I am happy that our leadership has listened to these requests and acted quickly to make the funding available. This funding is just the start of our legislative effort to address this virus, and we are also looking to make substantial policy changes that may benefit you or your family.

Governor Baker filed S.2598 which would waive the one week waiting period for unemployment benefits to be paid to workers impacted by COVID-19. This would allow for the Department of Unemployment Assistance to immediately help residents who have become unemployed due to the virus. This waiver will last until 90 days after the state of emergency has terminated. As of January 2020, the unemployment insurance trust fund has a balance of $1.6 billion.

Although I applaud the Governor’s idea, as with the small business loan fund, I do not believe this legislation goes far enough to protect our workers. That is why I have also been, advocating to include a provision in this bill that will help residents already on unemployment that are close to exhausting their benefits. At this point in time, it does not seem likely that employers will be hiring new staff. Therefore, it is imperative that we help those folks struggling financially at this difficult time and I will be filing amendments to this legislation to help protect the most economically vulnerable in our state in two specific ways. First, I believe we need to increase the maximum eligible payment for those who are without work. Second, I also think we need to extend the duration of unemployment benefits. Our economy is headed for a shock and this is when government needs to step up and act as a buffer against the coming downturn in economic activity.  Not only with this alleviate economic hardship, it will inject an economic stimulus at a time when I believe consumer demand will fall sharply.And of course, all of this state action must be debated and considered in light of whatever aid package is enacted by the federal government.

The Governor also filed bills pertaining to town meetings which, in part, will codify the executive order discussed in detail below, and a bill designating September 14, as a state holiday to allow for people to participate in the Boston Marathon which has been postponed. Both bills are making their way through the committee process and I will keep you updated as these pieces of legislation develop.

There are several other pieces of pending legislation, including one that I have heard from several of you about and was happy to co-sponsor, An Act regarding Decarceration and COVID-19. This bill would allow for the release of individuals who possess no immediate physical threat to the community, including all individuals charged with the simple possession of controlled substances, within 14 days of being deemed not a threat. It would also allow for compassionate release and release for those involved in the pre-trial process.

A bill concerning Notary Publics also has been filed. This legislation would allow remote witnessing of legislation over video conference, something that is not currently allowed. There are many people in the hospital or in quarantine that sadly need to draw up or modify their wills at this time. This legislation would allow notaries to provide them with these necessary services without risking infection themselves by having to be in the room with the patient. Importantly, this legislation will also facilitate real estate transactions that require a notary. 

In addition, a bill that has been filed to create a new fund to assist hourly wage workers who miss work due to the coronavirus. Similar to unemployment insurance, this legislation, or some other similar approach, may prove crucial to thousands of Massachusetts residents in the hospitality and service industry. During this time, I will make every effort to help those most directly impacted by these challenging circumstances.  If you have any questions about this legislation, please do not hesitate to contact me or my staff.

Unemployment for Gig Economy Workers

  • I filed An Act for unemployment rules for gig economy with Representative Jay Livingstone.
  • Many companies hire independent contractors to provide a particular service to that company’s customers, but these contractors are not considered employees.
  • The bill does not change the employment relationship, but it instructs companies that use independent contractors to pay unemployment benefits to those contractors.

House COVID-19 Domestic Violence Response

  • House leadership is launching an initiative to assess the current and emerging needs of victims and survivors of domestic violence.
  • This initiative will focus on shelter capacity, rapidly connecting victims and survivors with necessary services, and addressing the challenge of lack of access to the court systems during this time.
  • Jane Doe, Inc. has shared that anyone in need of sexual or domestic violence resources can call (877) 785-2020 or go to Jane Doe, Inc.’s website.

Eviction and Foreclosure Moratorium and Housing Stability

Unemployment

Governor Baker signed into law An Act authorizing waiver of the one week waiting period for unemployment benefitswhich waives the one-week waiting period for unemployment benefits from the start of the current state of emergency until 90 days after its termination. While I appreciate this action, I do not think it goes nearly far enough. Therefore I filed An Act establishing unemployment benefits expansion during public health emergencies with Senator Pat Jehlen. This bill would extend unemployment benefits by 13 weeks, from 26 weeks to 39 weeks. Additionally, those whose benefits recently ended (within the last 8 weeks) would also be eligible for an extension of 13 weeks of assistance. People would also not lose their benefits if they are not actively able to seek work. Finally, this legislation increases weekly unemployment benefits across the board, allowing people to receive a higher percentage share of their previous pay, without impacting their future unemployment eligibility.

If you or a family member needs to file a claim for unemployment assistance, or seek information about eligibility, please visit this website.  My office is also able to assist you in interacting with the Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA). In order to meet the growing demands, the DUA is hosting daily town hall meetings to help people understand the process of applying for unemployment and to answer questions across the state. You can sign up to attend a virtual town hall here.

We have had the ability to help a number of individuals cut through the backlog and get their unemployment claim processed. If you or any friends, family or neighbors might need assistance in getting a claim processed, please let me know. Individuals who normally would not qualify for unemployment benefits now have more access to such resources. 

  • The federal CARES Act expands unemployment eligibility in unprecedented ways by allowing so called gig workers and others to receive benefits. 
  • Because the MA Department of Unemployment Assistance has no record of gig workers or self-employed people, unlike traditional employees, they must create an entirely new system to process the claims from these workers.
  • Having worked on large-scale software implementation projects, it is clear to me that the sheer scale and complexity of this project is daunting.
  • The CARES Act also covers those who have exhausted their benefits and the state is now waiting for implementation guidance from the federal government for these claims.

When applying for unemployment:

  • Visit this website to apply.
  • There are daily Virtual Town Halls (in English and Spanish) to walk through how to apply. You can sign up for one here.
  • Make sure you input your employer’s name as it appears on your W2.
  • Often calls from the Unemployment Office show up as “Restricted” or “Possible Spam” and some phones automatically forward those calls to voicemail. Make sure this feature is turned off on your phone or provide an alternate phone number.
  • Resources in Spanish can be found here. I have signed onto a letter with several other colleagues asking the Governor’s office to provide resources in many more languages.
  • Please email me at Dave.Rogers@mahouse.gov if you have any issues or need help.



In addition, the Governor announced, through an executive order, that other “public bodies” will not be subject to the open meeting laws during the COVID-19 public health emergency.  The Governor’s order incorporates recommendations from the Center for Disease Control and Massachusetts Department of Public Health’s recommendation that all residents take extra measures to socially distance themselves from other residents for the time being.

This order allows towns to utilize telephone and internet technologies in order to allow local governance to continue, while still protecting public health during times of emergencies. Through this order, these public bodies can now allow remote participation by all of its members. However, if the town is not able to adequately offer a technological alternative to a public meeting place then this order allows for towns to release a full public transcript in order to comply with the law. Lastly, this order requires all remote meetings of public bodies to provide free access to the public to view.

From the Attorney General

  • The Attorney General’s Office rolled out a new initiative to connect frontline workers with much needed resources such as discounted meals and emergency child care. Workers can go to FrontlineMA.org to see a list of accessible resources.
  • The AG’s office is calling for more race and ethnicity-based data to help best provide for minority populations in Massachusetts and ensure they receive equitable treatment and resources.
  • Workers with work-related complaints can file online or contact the AG’s Fair Labor Hotline at (617) 727-3465.
  • The AG’s office is determined to preserve access to reproductive healthcare. As a result, our Attorney General, Maura Healey, along with other Democratic Attorneys General, sent a letter to the FDA urging them to lift restrictions that prohibit doctors from using telehealth methods to prescribe medical abortion drugs.
  • For more information on the actions of the Office of the Attorney General in response to COVID-19, you can go to the office’s website, here.

Debt Collection

The Attorney General has filed emergency regulations, effective immediately that will prohibit creditors from engaging in methods of debt collection that can require people to leave their homes or have in-person contact. The regulation has protections that apply to all creditors and prohibits them from deceptive practices in pursuing the payment of a debt during the COVID-19 emergency, including:

  • filing any new collection lawsuit; 
  • garnishing wages, earnings, properties or funds; 
  • repossessing vehicles; 
  • applying for or serving a capias warrant;
  • visiting or threatening to visit the household of a debtor;
  • visiting or threatening to visit the place of employment of a debtor;
  • confronting or communicating in person with a debtor regarding the collection of a debt in any public place.

Price Gouging

The Attorney General also filed emergency regulations to prohibit price gouging of essential products and services. There have been widespread reports of inflated prices for goods like hand sanitizer, face masks, and gloves as well as temporary personnel in response to the growing demand for such products and services due to the spread of COVID-19. Shortages have been reported across the country, placing a critical strain on members of the public as well as hospitals and medical facilities that rely on these essential products to protect their medical workers from infection and prevent the spread of disease.

Attorney General Healey asks the public to report the gouging of products, including PPE’s to her office at mass.gov/how-to/file-a-consumer-complaint

Other Resources/ Updates
Eviction Moratorium — Update from the Massachusetts Housing Court
The Chief Justice of the Massachusetts Housing Court issued an order which temporarily modifies the operations of housing courts around Massachusetts due to the coronavirus. Among these modifications is a temporary moratorium on summary process, or eviction, proceedings. This suspension will last until April 21st, 2020. This comes in addition to the filing of a bill I am cosponsoring, HD.4935, An Act Providing for a Moratorium on Evictions and Foreclosures During the COVID19 Emergency, which will protect Massachusetts residents facing housing instability during this time.

On March 17th it was announced that all Massachusetts courts will be closed. People with previously scheduled hearings can contact the clerk and clerk magistrate’s offices for information.

Massachusetts 2-1-1
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health announced that residents can now dial 2-1-1 for information about COVID-19 prevention, symptoms and treatment, testing information, and travel guidance. The line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Operators who are fluent in Spanish are available, and more than 150 other languages are supported through an interpreter services line that is also available 24/7. When you dial 2-1-1, an automated menu of options will be available; press 2-6 for coronavirus information. An online chat option is available through the Massachusetts 2-1-1 website.

Protecting our Elderly and Most Vulnerable

As many of you may know, this disease is hitting our long-term care facilities especially hard. These facilities house a vulnerable population and unfortunately, they have experienced significant outbreaks. The Baker Administration just yesterday has put forth a number of solutions to overcome the situations in our nursing homes, which are set forth below. Our community has not been immune to this problem, and there are facilities in my district experiencing a high level of both residents and staff testing positive. It is with great sadness I report that we have seen a significant loss of life. I am working closely with town leaders to help get the personal protective equipment (PPE) the staff desperately need. I have also pushed for greater testing of staff which is now happening.

  • In addition to the policies regarding nursing homes implemented by the governor in March, the administration has released new resources and ongoing steps to support long-term care facilities.
  • The Commonwealth is launching a Nursing Home Mobile Testing unit to protect vulnerable populations residing in nursing homes and assisted living facilities in partnership with the DPH, National Guard and the Broad Institute.
  • The governor announced a 10% increase in MassHealth rates across the board for all nursing facilities.
  • Facilities that create dedicated COVID-19 wings or units will be eligible for an additional 15% rate increase, for a total of 25%.
  • Approximately $30 million will go to supporting facilities that established dedicated skilled nursing facilities.
  • Since the beginning of March, the Massachusetts COVID-19 Command Center has distributed approximately 1.3 million masks, almost 200,000 gowns and over 2 million gloves to long-term care facilities.
  • There is also a new Nursing Home Resource Line, a dedicated phone line to connect the families of nursing home residents with information, resources, and answers to questions about the care their family member is receiving during COVID-19. Call (617) 660-5399, seven days a week 9am-5pm.

In this same vein, please check in on your friends and neighbors who are elderly or otherwise immunocompromised. Ask them if you can go grocery shopping or run errands for them so they do not have to go out in public for the time being.

Incarcerated Individuals and Corrections Staff

Many of us are concerned about the potential for an outbreak in our prisons and houses of correction. Given the inability to maintain physical distancing in these environments, the possibility of a significant spread is high which puts the health of corrections staff and inmates at risk. The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC), our highest state court, has issued an opinion on a case concerning this issue, the details of which are set forth below.

  • The SJC held that inmates held “pre-trial” were entitled to a presumption of release unless they fell into certain categories designated by the court, such as perpetrators of violent crime.
  • Individuals charged with low level, non-violent crimes are being released.
  • The SJC also held that it lacked authority to order release hearings for those who were already convicted and sentenced, even for non-violent crimes.
  • The court did note that the executive branch could decide to release certain individuals.
  • This report from the SJC outlines weekly numbers of released inmates for the previous week.

As a result of the above mentioned opinion, I have been working with the ACLU and Prisoners Legal Services to persuade the Governor and his public safety staff to release those in state prison who meet certain criteria, including those whose sentence is set to conclude soon. For those who may want to better understand the issues you can read a letter drafted by the ACLU here

Contact Tracing
Massachusetts is the first state in the nation to launch a contact tracing effort with Partners In Health.

  • The COVID-19 Community Tracing Collaborative (CTC) will focus on tracing the contacts of all people who have tested positive for COVID-19 and support them in quarantine. 
  • CTC will support the efforts to expand bed capacity and increase PPE’s and other supplies.
  • The program will hire 1,000 contact tracers who will work remotely. Apply to be a contact tracer here.

The MBTA

In order to protect their workers and to accommodate lower ridership, the T has released a modified schedule. Visit the MBTA’s website for more information.

Utilities

Eversource has announced that it will be postponing disconnections for nonpayment to residential and business properties, for electric, gas, and water. If you are having problems paying your bill you are encouraged to visit eversource.com or call 800-592-2000.

The COVID-19 outbreak has led to an increase in scam activity. There is information on eversource.com to reminding customers to be wary of any unsolicited calls that threaten to disconnect their utility service and that demand payment by unusual means. Eversource would like to remind everyone that will never ask a customer for personal information over the phone in this manner and does not accept payments via gift cards or other common tools used by scammers.

Grocery Stores
As some of you may have noticed, compliance with recommended social distancing (which experts say is a distance of 6 feet) has not been remarkably well observed at some supermarkets. This poses a risk to both shoppers and the employees who are working hard to help us at a difficult time.

I have a wonderful neighbor across the street who works at Whole Foods and tells me some shoppers are coming directly up to him to ask questions such as which aisle contains a certain product. That is wholly inappropriate at this time and I worry about my neighbor and many countless others similarly situated at this time. These folks are trying to help us under very difficult circumstances.

As a consequence, I have been in touch with senior staff in the Governor’s office and directly in touch with Maura Healey, our outstanding Attorney General, with suggestions on how we can improve compliance and protect public health in our supermarkets, one of the few places people are still congregating in large numbers. The guidance that came out, as a result, can be viewed here: https://www.mass.gov/doc/march-25-2020-pharmacy-grocery-order

One of my ideas I discussed with the Attorney General is pretty straightforward. All stores should have signs be put at the entrance and/or inside each store as a reminder of appropriate distancing. Having just been to the supermarket recently after the order when into effect, it is good to see these changes being implemented.
Governor Baker issued an order on April 7th that requires grocery stores to limit occupancy to 40% of their maximum occupancy allowance to ensure safe social distancing.

  • Stores with capacity for 25 people or less are exempt from this order.
  • The occupancy count will include employees and customers.
  • Store employees are required to monitor the amount of people within the store at a given time and if lines form outside, employees should also monitor those to ensure social distancing is being properly observed.

Further, the Baker Administration and the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security have given grocery store workers access to the priority testing sites established for first responders.

  • Testing began April 11th for these workers.
  • Testing sites are located at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro and the Big E fairgrounds in West Springfield.
  • Appointments must be made in advance by a supervisor or manager and employees do not need to be symptomatic to qualify.

Stop and Shop has announced that during the hours of 6:00AM-7:30AM daily, all stores will be open exclusively for residents 60 years of age or older. Again, if you are not 60 years of age or older, please check on your older friends and neighbors or those who may have compromised immune systems and ask if you can do their shopping for them. All Whole Foods Markets and Target stores will open up an hour early (8:00am) for senior customers over 60 years of age.  Select Traders Joe’s stores will open early for seniors and are limiting the number of people who can enter at a time.

State & Local Resources

  • To volunteer in public health, healthcare or emergency response capacities, click here.
  • Buoy Health has provided an online symptom checker which can be used to assess your risk for COVID-19.
  • Text COVIDMA to 888-777 for up-to-date alerts straight to your phone.
  • To donate personal protective equipment (PPE) to the Massachusetts COVID-19 Donation Program, click here.
  • If you are looking to sell  PPE goods to support the Massachusetts COVID-19 response, you can go directly through the state procurement program, here.
  • The Massachusetts Immigrant & Refugee Advocacy Coalition COVID-19 Resources page 

COVID-19 Relief Fund for Individuals

The COVID-19 Relief Fund for Individuals provides $1,000 grants to people who have lost income derived from their work as individual artists and independent teaching artists/humanists/scientists as a direct result of COVID-19 related cancellations and closures in Massachusetts. Application deadline is April 22, 2020

Resources for Veterans:

VA Health Care:

  • Per the VA Health Care Website: Call your VA medical center before going to a clinic, urgent care, or emergency room, especially if you have symptoms of fever, cough and shortness of breath. Calling first helps us protect you, medical staff, and other patients. Ask your VA health care team about the option of care by phone or video instead of an in-person visit. We also ask that visitors who feel unwell postpone their visits to VA facilities.
  • If you are enrolled in VA Health Care and have access to a smart phone  or computer, learn more about the VA Video Connect available now: https://mobile.va.gov/app/va-video-connect

Veterans’ Chapter 115 Benefits and Veterans Service Officer Contact

  • Veterans can still access and apply for Chapter 115 benefits, which will be a crucial financial opportunity for many Veterans and their families. Folks can review their eligibility here and get their Veterans’ Service Officers contact information here.

State Emergency Phone Numbers for Veterans

  • Veteran’s Crisis Line: 1-800-273-8255
  • MA Dept of Veteran’s Services S.A.V.E. Team: 1-888-844-2838
  • Homeless Veteran Hotline:  1-888-866-2838

Agawam and Winchendon Veterans’ Cemetery

  • Per the Massachusetts Department of Veterans Services: In the interest of public health and the safety of our community, starting tomorrow, Tuesday, March 17, 2020, all committal services at the Massachusetts Veterans’ Memorial Cemeteries in Agawam and Winchendon will be suspended until further notice.
    • Interments and burials will continue; however, no committal services or volunteer firing detail will be held or provided. All interments will be direct burials only.
    • Out of an abundance of caution, the administrative office will be closed to visitors and guests, but our staff will be on hand to respond to phone calls and emails.
    • For additional information please contact: MVMC Agawam: 413-821-9500 MVMC Winchendon: 978-297-9501

Organizational Support

Military Friends Foundation- Military Friends Foundation offers grant programs and community empowerment events in support of families who have faced hardships related to military service

Massachusetts Military Support Foundation- MA Military Support Foundation provides programs, services and goods that help satisfy critical needs and enhance the well-being and quality of life for Massachusetts Active Duty Military, National Guard, Coast Guard, Veterans and their families.

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Contact Dave

Please never hesitate to contact me for any reason.

Phone: 617-722-2637
Email: dave.rogers@mahouse.gov
Mail: State House Room 544, Boston, MA 02133