COLUMN: Picnic, ribbon-cuttings highlight Velis’ week


Hello Everyone,

I hope with the extremely warm weather this week that everyone was able to stay cool and safe. Exposure to high temperatures for extended periods of time can be very dangerous and I encourage you to check out heat safety tips at mass.gov/mema/heat.

As a part of my continued work as chairman of the Veterans and Federal Affairs Committee, this week I met with the veterans group BRAVE (Business Resources for American Veterans, Employment and Enterprise). We discussed an ongoing issue in our commonwealth where veterans struggle to get certain credits from military training accepted for course credit at Massachusetts colleges. We need to ensure that we are supporting our veterans during their transitions to academic institutions and I look forward to working closely with BRAVE as chairman to address these issues.

On Wednesday, I started my morning in Westfield at the newly renovated Dunkin’ on Elm Street to present them with a Senate citation and enjoy a cup of coffee. Later that day I was fortunate to attend a retirement celebration in Holyoke for four of the original founders of the Homework House. The Homework House is an incredible academic support program for students in our community, and I was proud to help recognize these exceptional mentors for all their hard work over the years.

On Friday, I attended a  community event at the Log Cabin in Holyoke in honor of the families of those lost last spring at the Holyoke Soldiers Home. We must never forget the tragedies that took place at the facility and the impact that has been felt by so many families throughout our communities. I am grateful to have been a part of the event.

I started off my Saturday morning by joining Mayor Humason and Westfield community members for the ribbon cutting ceremony of Tiny Toes Learning Center on Mainline Drive. Congratulations to Fran and Laura Hastings on the opening, and welcome to Westfield! Later on in the day I drove over to Southampton for the Southampton Town Picnic at Conant Park Pavilion. My favorite part of the job is always speaking directly with constituents, and it was great to see so many neighbors and friends in person.

Especially with the COVID-19 delta variant on the rise, I want to remind everyone that COVID-19 vaccines are widely available. The vaccine is safe, effective, and is the best way to protect yourself, your family, and your community. I encourage you to talk to your doctor about any concerns and questions that you may have. Vaccine locations and information can be found at mass.gov/covid-19-vaccine.

As always, if there is anything I can do to assist you, please never hesitate to reach out to my office. I can be reached at my email, [email protected], or by phone, 413-572-3920, and you can find me online at senatorjohnvelis.com, where you can also sign up for my newsletter.


John Velis

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