Senator Joan B. Lovely
State Senator
2nd Essex District


November 6, 2015

Senate Approves Commission to Prevent Tenant Bullying 

(Boston) – Today the Senate passed legislation to create a commission to study ways to prevent bullying of tenants in public and subsidized multi-family housing. Senator Joan Lovely partnered with Peabody constituent and advocate Jerry Halberstadt to sponsor the resolve, which establishes a 19-member commission tasked with submitting policy recommendations to prevent instances of tenant bullying.

“Bullying isn’t just an issue confined to our schools and classrooms; it reaches individuals in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, workplaces, and public housing,” said Senator Joan Lovely. “Forming a commission to come together and work collaboratively will help create safer, healthier communities for all residents.”

With a focus on elderly and disabled tenants, the commission will identify the conditions that cause bullying and research successful prevention methods. This research will help identify and develop best practices, raise public awareness, and propose public policy recommendations and legislation necessary to protect tenants.

The commission will include six representatives from housing and consumer protection advocacy organizations and will be chaired by the secretary of the executive office of health and human services, or his/her designee.

To reach its findings, the commission will consult with tenants who have been victimized by bullying, managers who coordinate resident services, and individuals who have direct experience with bullying prevention. The commission will issue its recommendations to the Legislature not later than December 31, 2016.

To meet the needs of tenants in all areas, the commission will hold public meetings at various locations across the Commonwealth.

The bill now moves to the House of Representatives for consideration.