- February 22, 2024 - COMMONWEALTH BEACON 
The scientific evidence presented in the case, CommonWealth Beacon reported, concluded that “emerging adults, like juveniles, have a lack of impulse control, are more prone to risk taking, and are more susceptible to peer pressure than those over 21.” 

That is exactly what worries state Sen. John Keenan as the state considers calls from Gov. Maura Healey and state Treasurer Deborah Goldberg to begin selling lottery tickets online.
 “With gambling, I think it’s the same thing,” Keenan said of the arguments for changes to criminal justice statutes for emerging adults. “The mind is still developing and they are particularly prone to the excitement that comes with gambling that’s now happening on phones, the instant endorphin rushes they get if they hit on something.” 

Copyright ©2024 Keenan for Senate. All Rights Reserved.
The Keenan Committee   P.O. Box 690-168     Quincy, Massachusetts  02269

- March 21, 2024 - WCVB
Massachusetts Senate unanimously passes bill to illegalize revenge porn.

State Sen. John Keenan, a Democrat representing the Norfolk and Plymouth District, sponsors the bill that addresses various forms of revenge porn.

“With the bill, we address what would look like an image of somebody — something that’s been generated through artificial intelligence — that’s shared for the same purpose in the same way with the same result,” Keenan said. [Video]

– February 22, 2024 - THE BOSTON GLOBE
A father did everything he could to protect his son. Until he couldn’t.

The Berners have found an ally, too, in state Senator John F. Keenan, who invited Kevin to testify in support of a Massachusetts bill that would outlaw the non-consensual sharing of explicit images.

”Having witnessed how they are addressing this and what they are doing,” Keenan told the Globe, “I hope that if I was in the same situation that I’d be doing the same things they are.”

- June 20, 2024 - MASSLIVE 
Years in the making, Mass. Gov. Healey signs new revenge porn law

Often, survivors do not know the images have been shared until after they see them online, The Boston Globe reported in 2022.  And some estimates show that 1 in 25 Americans have been a victim of revenge porn. 
“The harms from nonconsensual image sharing can be substantial; a single act of posting sensitive images can cause lasting and ongoing reputational damage to victims,” according to a 2016 report by the Data & Society Research Institute.

On Thursday, one key lawmaker, state Sen. John Keenan, D-Norfolk/Plymouth, said he hoped that “the signing of this bill brings some closure for revenge porn and coercive control survivors."

​​- March 4, 2024 - THE BOSTON GLOBE 
Critics assail Healey plan to cut funding for gambling addiction amid betting surge

Massachusetts spent nearly $12 million on problem gambling services in the last fiscal year — more per capita than almost any other state.

Yet gambling researchers, public health advocates, and several state lawmakers say they fear losing ground in efforts to track and combat compulsive gambling — at a time when record numbers of people are placing bets online. There hasn’t been a statewide study published on the prevalence of gambling problems since 2015, when researchers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst concluded that 2 percent of the state’s adult population had a gambling problem (in line with national averages) and another 8 percent were at risk. In 2020, the state, citing funding pressures, abruptly discontinued an expansive study exploring the economic and social effects of gambling over time.

“With all the [gambling] advertising that’s happened over the past year . . . we need to get a good measure on its impact,” said Senator John Keenan, a Democrat from Quincy. “If we don’t get out in front of the industry now, then we will have a very significant public health problem in the near future.”

Copyright ©2024 Keenan for Senate. All Rights Reserved.

The Keenan Committee   P.O. Box 690-168     Quincy, Massachusetts  02269

- June 20, 2024 - NBC BOSTON
Gov. Healey signs Mass. revenge porn bill into law Thursday

The governor’s signature makes Massachusetts the 49th state to prohibit revenge porn, leaving South Carolina as the only outlier.

Healey was joined at the 10 a.m. bill-signing ceremony at the State House by Lt. Gov. Kim Driscoll, Senate President Karen Spilka, Senate Ways and Means Chairman Michael Rodrigues, Judiciary Committee co-chair Rep. Michael Day and
Sen. John Keenan, among other officials, advocates and survivors.

The Senate shipped the compromise bill, which both branches unanimously approved, to Healey’s desk last Thursday. The legislation bans the sharing of sexually explicit images and videos without the subject’s consent, and creates a diversion and education program for adolescents who are involved in sexting. It also installs protections for domestic abuse victims against “coercive control,” which can impair people’s safety and autonomy.

KEENAN for Senate

- March 19, 2024 - THE BOSTON GLOBE 
If it can happen to Taylor Swift…

This week the Senate gets a chance to put its stamp on a bill to provide an enforceable ban on revenge porn, increase penalties for criminal harassment, and provide diversion programs for teen sexting and educational efforts aimed at prevention.

“So many people who have been victims of this, who have been survivors of this, will feel that they’ve been heard, and that going forward, when this does happen, there will be recourse,” state Senator John Keenan, a sponsor of the bill, told State House News Service. “Hopefully, it will also have a deterrent effect. People [will] understand the gravity of this type of behavior and know that it’s criminal behavior in certain circumstances.”

​- February 5, 2024 - BOSTON GLOBE 
I visited supervised consumption sites in six cities. Here’s what I found.
With overdose numbers at record highs in Massachusetts, there is growing interest in allowing supervised consumption sites, also known as safe injection sites or overdose prevention centers. Research shows nobody has died from an overdose at these sites, that they help limit the spread of sexually transmitted and blood-borne infections, and that they save money by reducing associated health care and emergency response costs, and serve as paths to treatment. However, the concern is always, “They’ll ruin whatever neighborhoods they’re in.” To find out if they do, I went to neighborhoods where sites are already located to see for myself.

In Montreal, Vancouver, Toronto, Quebec City, and New York, and in Philadelphia where sites are proposed, I spent hours walking the neighborhood streets and alleyways, sitting at bus stops, talking with people, and lingering in parks and doorways.

- March 21, 2024 - WBUR
Mass. Senate advances bill that would ban ‘revenge porn’

Backers said they are optimistic the measure can finally close a legal “loophole” that leaves Massachusetts and South Carolina as the only two states where law enforcement is unable to respond forcefully to revenge porn, a practice that has become more common and subjects survivors to major emotional, psychological and financial harm. The House unanimously approved its own revenge porn bill in January and top Democrats have said the branches are more closely aligned on the issue than in the past.

Sen. John Keenan, who filed standalone legislation to crack down on the behavior, turned his eyes toward the Senate gallery during Thursday’s session and thanked survivors in attendance for coming forward with their personal stories.

“Today, let us close this loophole. Let us give closure to people who have been victimized by this crime but have been survivors and have contributed to making a difference,” the Quincy Democrat said. “Let this legislation make a difference so that everyone knows this is not acceptable, it is criminal, and there will be a consequence.”