Who is a member?
Our members are the local governments of Massachusetts and their elected and appointed leadership.
The MMA Human Services Council’s Annual Business Meeting on July 29 featured a discussion about American Rescue Plan Act funding for human services.
MMA Legislative Analyst Jackie Lavender Bird gave an overview of the ARPA, including some basic criteria for ARPA funding, the four main categories of eligible uses, and key points of the Interim Final Rule issued by the U.S. Department of the Treasury. She discussed some of the uses that are particularly relevant to human services professionals, including support for mental health to address situations exacerbated by the pandemic, rehiring or adding additional human services staff, and aid to disproportionately impacted populations or communities.
Holliston Youth and Family Services Director Jackie Winer discussed items her department is considering for use of ARPA funds, including hiring a full-time staff person to support the increase in community mental health needs resulting from COVID-19, and expansion of a handful of existing mental health initiatives to serve a greater number of community members.
Winer emphasized the important role that human services staff can play in advocating for allocation of ARPA funds to support the greatest needs of the community.
The meeting featured welcoming remarks from MMA HSC President Laura Ducharme, followed by a vote on the fiscal 2022-23 slate of HSC Officers.
The elected officers are:
President: Laura Ducharme, community services coordinator, Acton
Vice President: Kristin Kennedy, health and community services director, Easton
Secretary: Christine Shruhan, youth and family services director, Burlington
Treasurer: June David-Fors, family and youth services director, Northborough
• ARPA Funding For Human Services presentation – MMA presentation (700K PDF)