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State Senator

Mae Flexer

Representing Brooklyn, Canterbury, Killingly, Mansfield, Putnam, Scotland, Thompson & Windham

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Senator Mae Flexer
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About Senator Flexer

Deputy President Pro Tempore & Federal Relations Liaison

Chair: Government Administration & Elections

Vice Chair: Higher Education & Employment Advancement

Member: Appropriations; Education; Internship; Judiciary

State Senator Mae Flexer was sworn-in to the Connecticut State Senate to represent the 29th District of Brooklyn, Canterbury, Killingly, Mansfield, Putnam, Scotland, Thompson and Windham in January 2015. From 2008 to 2014 Mae served three terms in the Connecticut House of Representatives serving the 44th Assembly District towns of Killingly and Plainfield.

In 2017, Mae was appointed by Senate President Pro Tempore Martin M. Looney to serve as Deputy President Pro Tempore and Federal Relations Liaison. This year, she was appointed Senate Chair of the legislature’s Government Administration & Elections committee and as Senate Vice-Chair of the Higher Education & Employment Advancement committee. She also serves as a member of the Appropriations, Judiciary, Education and Internship committees.

As the daughter of an Irish immigrant and a disabled Vietnam Veteran, Mae grew up in a family that didn't have much in the way of financial resources, but through hard work, grit and the support of various government programs has achieved what most families dream for. Her upbringing, which included relying on food stamps, Medicaid, subsidized housing and Pell grants, has greatly shaped her priorities during her public service career in the Connecticut General Assembly. At a time when Connecticut is cutting more and more valuable state programs, Mae has stood against cuts to programs and benefits like the ones that once moved her own family out of poverty and gave her and her sister the chance to be the first in their family to go to college.

As Connecticut’s youngest female state Senator, she has fought diligently for issues that particularly effect women, fighting for economic fairness and justice through efforts to create the first in the nation state paid sick day law and paid family leave while also fighting to increase the minimum wage. She has worked especially hard to improve and strengthen Connecticut's efforts to address domestic and sexual violence including being the author of trend setting laws that mandate that colleges and universities provide services to sexual assault, stalking and domestic violence victims and requiring the annual reporting of those incidents to the legislature. In 2019, she wrote and facilitated Senate and House passage of Senate Bill 3, the “Time’s Up Act,” which increases certain sexual harassment penalties, extend the time limits people have to file criminal charges for sexual assault from five years to twenty years, and require more employer-sponsored sexual harassment training.

She also authored a law requiring higher education institutions to use affirmative consent or "yes means yes" as the standard when investigating offenses against survivors of assault. She advocated for and secured resources to improve Connecticut's response to domestic violence by providing 24/7 staffing at domestic violence shelters, establishing a pilot GPS monitoring program for offenders to protect victim safety, and allowing judges to place financial requirements in orders of protection to ensure offenders continue to pay the bills when removed from the home. She has championed laws that mandate the retrieval of firearms from domestic violence offenders upon the issuance of a temporary restraining order despite fierce opposition from the NRA. Her work against domestic violence and sexual assault has received national and statewide recognition.

In 2018, Mae led Connecticut's successful effort to join the National Popular Vote Compact, and worked diligently with CT Students for a Dream for 5 years to finally pass a law allowing undocumented students access to financial aid at the state's public colleges and universities.

Protecting the character of a community is also a top priority for Mae. This year, in an effort to decrease the rate of tobacco use in our state, she co-wrote and facilitated Senate passage of H.B. 7200, An Act Prohibiting the Sale of Cigarettes, Tobacco Products, Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems and Vapor Products to Persons Under Age Twenty-One. The law raises the point of sale for tobacco products from 18 to 21, with penalties ranging from fines to mandated education and suspension of business licenses for violators. It passed both the House and the Senate with overwhelming bipartisan support.

Mae has also long been a champion for seniors and veterans in our state. She led the state legislature in approving a new law ensuring that the driver’s licenses of members of the military will not expire while they are on active duty and stationed out-of-state. She’s fought to increase veteran education benefits, expand state tax credits for veteran-owned businesses, and streamline the application process for veterans looking for work. Mae has worked to make sure our state’s seniors could stay
in their homes by taking on big utility companies to reduce fees, and has led the fight to strengthen protections against abuse and neglect of seniors, and to expand support for caregivers.

Additionally, as the chair of the Human Services subcommittee of the Appropriations Committee, Mae was proud to argue against the inclusion of an asset test in the Governor’s 2019-2020 budget recommendations. She knew that it would hurt some of the most vulnerable people in our state, and the committee voted to pass the legislature’s budget recommendations without an asset test, maintaining the strong Medicare Savings Program we have today.

An alumnus of Killingly High School, Mae earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Connecticut and a degree from Quinebaug Valley Community College. Mae currently works as the inaugural executive director of Emerge Connecticut, the state affiliate of Emerge America, an organization that recruits, trains and mentors Democratic women to run for office.

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Hartford, CT 06106-1591

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