NECC Observer

The student news website of Northern Essex Community College, Haverhill and Lawrence, Mass.

Healey is a great choice for our state

With the Massachusetts mid-term elections decided, Democrats came out with big wins across the state. The Democrats won 37 State Senate races as opposed to only three Republicans and had 132 wins as opposed to 25 in the Massachusetts House of Representatives. But the big historic win for the state of Massachusetts is Governor elect Maura Healey with 63 percent of the vote.

Healey will be the first woman elected governor in Massachusetts and the first openly lesbian governor in the country.

Healey has a clear vision of what she wants to accomplish

The climate crisis is one of her top priorities. “She understands the critical urgency of this issue and she knows what’s at stake – especially for the Commonwealth’s most vulnerable communities,” according to

According to her website, she will innovate with state government, “working directly with the communities, implementing science-based policy, partnering with clean technology businesses and supporting clean energy research development.”

Healey supports criminal justice reform. She supported the 2020 Police Reform Bill in Massachusetts repealing the mandatory minimums and bail reform. With the new Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission, she wants to “ensure that our police departments and officers have uniform, training standards, certification and decertification policies, de-escalation tactics and other lifesaving procedures,” according to her website.

Healey will “appoint leaders who share a commitment to public safety, equity and criminal justice reform,” the website said.

She will continue to support investments that prevent entry into the criminal justice system in the first place by expanding and increasing access to behavioral health care and recovery services and hiring more social workers in schools. For those re-entering our communities, she will look to advance opportunities that increase access to jobs and education, according to her website.

Healey sees workforce developmement opportunities “as a means to support people who are re-entering society” and provide stipends for former inmates to live off of while they train for new jobs.”

Healey will continue to support legislation to ensure incarcerated individuals are not charged for phone calls to their loved ones which can be extremely expensive for family members. She believes “we must remove barriers to re-entry like losing a drivers license or being barred from good paying jobs or affordable housing,” according to her website.

She will “invest in multidisciplinary crisis to response teams to respond to certain emergency calls including behavioral health and homelessness” which will prevent less guns for a mental health crisis.

“As Governor, Healey will continue to be a strong advocate for federal funding for early education and care. She supports the Common Start Proposal which would make child care free for the lowest-income families, limit child care costs for most families to no more than seven percent of their income, and significantly increase pay for early educators to address the work force crisis in the early education field,” according to her website.

As Governor, Healey will continue to focus on “closing achievement gaps and better support for students and their families in K-12 education, which includes the Student Opportunity Act which provides more equitable funding for our school districts.”

She finds it important to invest in behavioral health services. She wants to update our school buildings which are in disrepair, outdated, lack modern science labs and equipment. Schools suffer from poor ventilation and are not environmentally sustainable, according to her website.

“The buildings most in need of renovation or replacement are disproportionately in lower-income communities that serve larger populations of Black and Brown students and educators who deserve to learn in a modern and healthy environment.” according to Healey.

Healey’s website says that “as Governor, Healey will promote to recruit and retain educators of color and expand early college programs. The Massachusetts Early College Initiative helps students from low-income families and communities of color earn free college credits and receive support while still in high school.”

Healey will “focus to find paths for students in higher education.” Healey was the first “AG in the country to create a Student Loan Assistance Unit and has helped thousands of borrowers navigate our broken student debt system,” according to her website.

For Healey, “tackling our student debt crisis is a matter of basic economics and racial justice.” As governor she will continue to “urge President Joe Biden to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student debt per borrower.”

Healey intends on “investing in our community colleges.” Healey will also work to improve access and affordability for higher education so more students can graduate debt free, according to her website.

As Governor, Healey will stand up for reproductive freedom. She intends to “shield providers and patients from civil and criminal liability for performing and receiving reproductive or gender affirming care.” which is legal in Massachusetts, according to her website.

Healey would like to “increase access to emergency contraception by calling on the Department of Public Health to issue a statewide standing order for individuals to have access it with no cost at the pharmacy,” according to her website.”

Healey would like to “mandate health insurers to cover reproductive and gender affirming care, including abortion.” She wants patients to have no deductibles, copays or sharing requirements from insurers, according to her website.

“Healey would fight to permit access to abortions after 24 weeks of pregnancy in cases of severe fetal anomaly and would work to enact other recommendations of the Beyond ROE Coalition,” among other reproductive concerns, according to her website.

As Governor, Healey wants to ensure rights for people with disabilities ensuring her administration addresses “the rights, needs and aspirations of those individuals with disabilities in a comprehensive and coordinated way,” the website said.

As Governor, Healey will continue to stand up to efforts to infringe on LGBTQ+ rights and work to “ensure that everyone in Massachusetts can live a happy, healthy, authentic life,” according to the website.

This would include adopting gender neutral markers on more official documents, and streamlining the process of co-parent adoption, according to her website.

Healey is also focused on the health care affordability crisis first by “treating mental and behavioral care as seriously as all other forms of health care.” She would like to lower the cost of prescription drugs and will focus on ways to lower overall healthcare for families, according to her website.

Housing affordability is one of Healey’s top issues. Her administration will establish a state-led pro-housing campaign to “educate residents about our housing shortage and advocate for the creation of enhanced housing options in the

Commonwealth.” This effort will include public advocacy, training and education for community members and business leaders, toolkits and technical assistance for local officials, along with support for establishing local and regional housing production goals, according to her website.

Healey wants to “ensure our public transportation system is safe, reliable and accessible throughout the state.” Upon taking office she will immediately appoint a Transportation Safety Chief to work across the relevant transportation agencies to conduct full safety review of our rail and bus operations, and roads and bridges, including cyclists and pedestrians, according to her website.

Healey will “promote economic development that creates opportunity, serving and balancing needs of all stakeholders, our communities, workers, employers and investors.” “She will approach all efforts through an equity lens, ensuring everyone in Massachusetts can access high-quality jobs and careers.”

Healey will continue to “defend our immigrant communities and work to find meaningful ways to make sure everyone in our state feels safe, welcome and has the tools to thrive.” She will end state and local law enforcement’s involvement in federal immigration matters. At the federal level she would like to “provide a meaningful pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants”, according to her website.

Healey is also committed to protecting voter rights for the residents of Massachusetts by expanding access to the ballot in the Commonwealth. She would like to pass the VOTES Act in Massachusetts, including same day voter registration and election day voting, and make voting more accessible to people who are incarcerated.

I believe Massachusetts has voted in the perfect, progressive governor who will bring equality to all in the Commonwealth.