We recently passed the Fiscal Year 2022 budget in the House of Representatives. After several long days of debate, an additional $300,000 was secured for important local programs on the Cape and Islands that support education, health access, and the environment in our district.

This includes $100,000 for the Falmouth Education Foundation. It has been such a tough year for teachers and school children, who have been trying to improve learning while navigating pandemic protocols and digital access, and this funding will help our educators close learning gaps. We negotiated an additional $50,000 for Martha’s Vineyard Community Services to help…

A White mob assaulting a Ted Landsmark on his way to a meeting outside City Hall in Boston, 1976. Picture by Stanley Forman

The death of George Floyd finally awoke many White citizens to a fundamental truth about this nation: racism is foundational to past and present American society. Two hundred fifty years of slavery and one hundred fifty years of segregation, exclusion, and criminalization bring us to our present state of racial injustice. While it may be uncomfortable for many to admit, the White community has always either advanced or benefited from racist policies. Racial inequality will not be repaired by ignoring, revising, or sugarcoating how racism has shaped nearly every aspect of American society. We need an honest accounting of our…

After months of negotiation in conference committee, the Massachusetts Legislature has passed a comprehensive piece of legislation outlining police reform across the state. This legislation includes major reforms to police training, certification and conduct, and holds police officers accountable for breaking the law and violating civil rights.

Here is a breakdown of the major policies included in the bill.

ROE Act Passed!

Women have a right to safe and affordable abortion access.

This November, we passed the ROE Amendment to the budget, codifying the right for a woman to choose into Massachusetts law. This amendment removes outdated language and changes current laws that disproportionately restrict access to individuals of color or with lower-income.

With the Trump appointment of anti-choice Amy Coney Barret to the Supreme Court, protecting these rights for Massachusetts women is critical. No matter what happens at the national level, we are committed to preserving and expanding abortion access in Massachusetts.

The ROE Amendment doesn’t solve everything. There are still…

Dylan Fernandes

State Representative for Falmouth, Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket & Gosnold

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