COMMON SENSE, COMPASSION, & CIVILITY

DISTRICT 7 CENTRAL MASSACHUSETTS

DEMOCRAT

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Governor's Council approves or rejects potential state court judges.

As an attorney and a former special education teacher who's worked with children caught up in the courts, I know that judges matter.

COMMON SENSE

Public safety and crime prevention include addressing the mental health and addiction crises. Prioritizing harm reduction will save lives, improve public safety, and save taxpayer money (we spend almost $60k per year to incarcerate someone). When life- and money-saving diversion options are appropriate, use them. And bring more mental health experts into our justice system.

COMPASSION

Kids from disadvantaged backgrounds, who've bounced around our foster system, who’ve experienced significant childhood trauma, are most likely to be referred to the courts. Once there: consequences for typical teenage behavior become part of their record; their education is interrupted; they are more likely to land in cycles of incarceration as adults. We need mental health experts within the judiciary and parole board who will focus on positive outcomes, harm reduction, and crime prevention.

CIVILITY

Democracy is about working together to reach consensus: choosing judges with the right temperment, experience, and expertise is a non-partisan task. I promise to serve with the civility and professionalism that the office deserves.

Civility also means  inclusivity and personal liberties:

Love is love, period.

Respect survivors.

Protect reproductive rights.

Protect the right to organize.

District 7 Central MA

About Governor's Council

Governor's Council consists of 8 Councilors and the Lieutenant Governor, who serves ex officio.  The Council’s work includes approving or rejecting the Governor’s judicial, parole board, and industrial accident board nominees. Each Councilor is elected from a district comprised of 5 state senate districts. District 7 contains most of Central Massachusetts: the 65 communities within the 1st Worcester, 2nd Worcester, Worcester-Middlesex, Worcester-Hampden-Hampshire-Middlesex, and Worcester-Norfolk State Senate Districts.

Ashburnham

Ashby

Athol

Auburn

Barre

Bellingham

Berlin

Blackstone

Bolton

Boylston

Brimfield

Brookfield

Charlton

Clinton

Douglas

Dudley

East Brookfield

Fitchburg

Gardner

Grafton

Hardwick

Holden

Holland

Hopedale

Hubbardston

Lancaster

Leicester

Leominster

Lunenburg

Mendon

Milford

Millbury

Millville

Monson

New Braintree

North Brookfield

Northborough - Pcts. 1, 2, 4

Northbridge

Oakham

Oxford

Palmer

Paxton

Petersham

Phillipston

Princeton

Rutland

Shrewsbury

Southbridge

Spencer

Sterling

Sturbridge

Sutton

Templeton

Townsend

Upton

Uxbridge

Wales

Ware

Warren

Webster

West Boylston

West Brookfield

Westminster

Winchendon

Worcester

ABOUT PAUL

Paul’s an attorney, member of the Worcester Planning Board, father of two, and former special education teacher.

As an attorney, Paul was named to the Community Legal Aid 2017 Pro Bono Honor Roll.

As an educator, Paul developed and taught in alternative special education programming for high schoolers with social and emotional disabilities

 

B.A., Wesleyan University

J.D., Northeastern University

M.Ed., Fitchburg State University

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

November 7, 2019

WORCESTER -  Attorney Paul DePalo has announced his candidacy to represent central Massachusetts on the Governor's Council, which approves or rejects potential judges. DePalo ran in 2018, earning 48% of the vote (146,000 votes) against a four term incumbent. The seat is now vacant. DePalo is a Worcester Planning Board member, father of two, and former public school special education teacher who developed and taught in programming for at-risk teens. A Democrat, DePalo stresses civility. “Choosing judges with the right experience and temperament is a non-partisan task.”

 

Attorney DePalo’s worked with children caught up in the courts, an important part of his platform. “We need to catch kids before they land in cycles of incarceration,” DePalo said. “It’s disproportionately kids who’ve experienced childhood trauma who are referred to the courts, and once in the system, typical teenage behavior faces ever-escalating consequences. Let’s divert kids into supportive settings and away from lives of crime.”

 

“On criminal justice, public safety must be our top priority, and that includes long-term crime prevention,” DePalo said. “We need judges and parole board members who understand mental health, including addiction and trauma. We should utilize cost-effective and proven diversion programs, which reduce crime, save lives, and save taxpayer dollars. We risk public safety when we release prisoners worse off than when they entered the system.”

 

Attorney DePalo holds a B.A. from Wesleyan University, a J.D. from Northeastern University, and an M.Ed. from Fitchburg State University.  He is admitted to practice law in Massachusetts State and Federal Courts and is licensed as a Principal and Special Education teacher. 

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CATCH KIDS BEFORE THEY LAND IN CYCLES OF INCARCERATION

I’ve seen children come out of the system worse off than when they entered. Judges should understand how trauma impacts school, behavior, and child development. Our kids should face lives of opportunity, not incarceration.

ADDRESSING OUR MENTAL HEALTH CRISIS

Addiction is ravaging our communities. We need judges and parole board members who understand mental health, including addiction and trauma. We need to utilize treatment programs and stop releasing prisoners worse off than when they entered.

GETTING SMART ON CRIME

Let's end expensive and ineffective mass incarceration by utilizing proven diversion programs when appropriate. Reducing recidivism saves money, supports communities, and improves working conditions for our corrections officers.

 GENDER EQUALITY

We need judges who will fight for women. All women. For their reproductive health. For equal opportunity and equal wages. And for the right to be respected and heard.

CIVIL RIGHTS FOR ALL

Our state and federal Constitutions are aspirational documents. We need judges sensitive to society’s ongoing march towards achieving our stated ideals of liberty and justice for all.

HONEST PAY FOR HONEST WORK

Justice requires that we are all on a level playing field. The rights for workers to organize and collectively bargain must always be protected.