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UPDATES: 2023 Legislative Session

Gender-Based Violence

Bills to Protect Victims of Gender-based Violence

Discussing Domestic Violence and Homeless Youth at Legislature

Intense Testimony for Hearing about Missing and Murdered Black Women and Girls (HF55)

HF 15 (Frazier) was approved by the House Public Safety Committee, as part of four bills related to guns. HF 15 is the red flag bill where guns can be removed if someone is a danger to self or others. [We will have more extensive coverage of this as we get closer to our public discussions about guns in May.]

Reproductive Rights

PRO Act signed into Minnesota law

Abortion legislation passes out of the MN House

Transforming Justice

Testimony on Behalf of Restoring the Right to Vote to Formerly Incarcerated Felons (HF28)

State Policy Makers Discuss Criminal Justice Reform

Public Safety

Emotional Press Conference With House Legislators About Public Safety

Testimony in Support of New Public Safety Approach; HF25 Moves Forward in House

New Rules Discussed to Redefine Charges for Labor Trafficking in Minnesota

The Governor and Lieutenant Governor recommend spending $300 million in public safety aid to cities, counties, and tribal governments across the state, enabling local governments to meet their community’s public safety needs.

To reduce gun violence across the state, the One Minnesota Budgets proposes universal background checks on all firearm sales, extreme risk protection orders to help remove firearms from those who pose an immediate threat to themselves or others, raising the minimum age for purchasing military-style firearms to 21 years old, banning high-capacity magazines, and promoting safe storage of firearms.

The proposed Violent Crime Reduction Strategy would be a new statewide initiative to address violent crime.

The proposed Minnesota Rehabilitation and Reinvestment Act would create incentives for people in the custody of the Department of Corrections to participate in and make progress toward individualized treatment plans to help them return successfully to their communities.

Mental Health

HF8 would appropriate $475 million in the coming biennium to fund additional school support personnel. As defined in the bill, school support personnel include counselors, nurses, psychologists, social workers, and chemical dependency counselors.

According to numerous testifiers, schools are currently experiencing an acute shortage of these licensed professionals. “Only half of Minnesota’s schools in 2021 had a school counselor in the building,” said Keela Kuhlers, the 2022 Minnesota School Counselor of the Year.

Rep. Kaela Berg (DFL-Burnsville), the bill’s sponsor, relayed her struggles to secure in-school assistance for her youngest son’s needs.

Several members referenced the shockingly high rate of suicide among Minnesota’s students as further evidence of the urgent need for more on-site support personnel. “This is incredibly important, especially for my area,” said Rep. Nolan West (R-Blaine). “Blaine High School had six suicides in a single year. It’s just insane.” 

Housing

Debating the Homeless Youth Act (HF444)

Budget

Discussions About State Grant Oversight Shaping Up at Minnesota Legislature

Tracking Where the Budget Surplus Goes

The Governor’s budget proposal

Education

Teaching more wide-ranging ethnic studies