Friday, May 26 Public Health & Legislative Updates

Dear friends,

I write to you today with public health and legislative updates. 


Table of Contents

  • Lifeguarding Opportunities This Summer
  • Public Health Updates
  • Cambridge Updates
  • Recent Press
  • A Glimpse at the Past Week
  • Mental Health Services and Resources


Lifeguarding Opportunities This Summer

The Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) needs certified lifeguards to work at our beautiful state beaches and pools this summer. Qualified applicants who are certified can receive up to $1,000 in bonuses if they commit to staying through September 4. Plus, this year the Healey-Driscoll Administration raised the pay to between $22-$27 per hour, depending on position and related credentials.

To be considered for a DCR lifeguard position, applicants must be at least 16 years of age by the date of hire, must complete lifeguard training, and must be certified in first aid and CPR. For more information or to apply, visit


Public Health Updates

Upcoming Stakeholder Listening Sessions on Problem Gambling

The Department of Public Health’s Office of Problem Gambling Services (OPGS) is holding its 7th annual stakeholder virtual listening sessions to discuss modern day gambling and strategies, policies, and programs to reduce the harms caused by problem gambling. Share your thoughts or recommendations about the programs provided by the OPGS and register for the listening sessions held on June 20 and June 21.

End of COVID-19 Public Health Emergency

As a reminder, the COVID-19 public health emergency has ended. That means: 

  • Healthcare facilities can set their own mask policies
  • Private insurers aren’t required to provide free rapid tests
  • Vaccines & treatments are still covered by insurance in MA

Learn more at

Massachusetts Funds Extra SNAP Payments

Due to federal action, extra COVID SNAP benefits ended on 3/2/2023. However, Massachusetts households are receiving state-funded extra SNAP payments on April 7, May 2, and June 2, 2023, following Governor Healey’s signing of the Legislature’s supplemental budget that created an off-ramp from the extra federal COVID SNAP benefits. Visit to learn more. 

MassHealth Redetermination Underway

The MassHealth eligibility redetermination process began on April 1. Over the next 12 months, MassHealth will renew the membership of all 2.3 million members. Visit or call (800)-841-2900 to learn more about this process. 


Cambridge Updates

Memorial Day Weekend Traffic Impacts

Expect traffic impacts and road closures due to events taking place over the Memorial Day weekend. 

  • The Boston Calling Music Festival will take place at the Harvard Athletic Complex in Allston from Friday, May 26 through Sunday, May 28. Expect street closures in Harvard Square between 9pm and midnight each night. Cambridge residents who experience noise or other impacts from the event should contact the Boston Calling Hotline at 617-398-0381 or call the City of Cambridge Non-Emergency Line at 617-349-3300.
  • Boston's Run to Remember will take place along the Charles River on Sunday, May 28, beginning at 7 a.m. The race route begins and ends in Boston, but a portion of the half marathon takes runners through Cambridge on Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation property along Land Boulevard and Memorial Drive. 

One Remaining COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic

Public Health Helpline Supports Residents with COVID-19

To speak with someone, call the confidential COVID-19 Hotline for the public health departments of Cambridge, Chelsea, Revere, and Winthrop at 617-933-0797. The hotline is managed by the Cambridge Public Health Department. Learn more at

City Offering Free At-Home COVID Tests

The Cambridge Public Health Department, in partnership with the Cambridge Health Alliance, is providing free COVID-19 rapid antigen at-home test kits. They can be picked up Monday through Friday from 8:30 AM to 5:30 PM in the CHA lobby at 119 Windsor Street. Cambridge businesses or organizations that would like free rapid tests to provide to customers can call the COVID-19 hotline at 617-933-0797 to request them.


Recent Press

100% Clean Energy Bill Supporters Rally On Beacon Hill

Mike Macklin, WBZ NewsRadio

State lawmakers and environmental activist groups united outside the Massachusetts State House Tuesday in support of a 100 percent clean energy bill.

An Act transitioning Massachusetts to clean electricity, heating and transportation (H.3689), otherwise known as the 100% Clean Act, would transition the state to having 100 percent clean energy from sources like solar and wind power by 2035.

At Tuesday's rally, bill co-sponsors and state representatives Marjorie Decker of Cambridge and Sean Garballey of Arlington joined groups such as Environment Massachusetts and the Union of Concerned Scientists to advocate for the legislation, which is now before state lawmakers on Beacon Hill, but has yet to be scheduled for public hearing.

Learn more at

This bill recognizes that we have a responsibility to support workers through a “Just Transition,” which means that important labor protections and wages are baked into the transition and that labor voices are at the table leading rather than just responding.


A Glimpse at the Past Week


I joined my colleague Representative Sean Garballey, advocates, and experts to launch the 100% Clean Act for this legislative session

I stopped by Lesley University to have a conversation with President Steinmayer about residents being displaced by the sale of Lesley properties and how it is impacting the community.

Congratulations to all the Harvard graduates, their families and faculty. The future is bright, compassionate, witty and smart. It was great to see colleagues, friends, and the incoming President Claudine Gay.


I attended the Gavin Foundation Road to Recovery Gala honoring the inspiring leadership of Shawn Nehiley of Iron Workers Local 7. Shawn has helped support many struggling with substance use disorder recover while also leading to innovate best practices to ensure that members of Local 7 and the building trades have the time and resources to seek treatment.
















Mental Health Services and Resources

If you or a loved one are struggling, please know that you are not alone. There are some great resources here:

Intimate Partner Abuse Prevention Helpline

This initiative is designed to prevent intimate partner violence by fostering accountability and change in people who harm or may harm their intimate partner. You can find more information at or by calling 877-898-3411.

As always, do not hesitate to reach out to me with questions or concerns at




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