2021 Legislative Agenda
Our legislative agenda is developed with input from our staff, clients and partners. Our foremost priority is achieving racial equity and social justice, and it is through this lens that we approach all our advocacy, which emphasizes enhancing access to housing, health care, childcare, economic opportunity and stability. Please see our 2021 Legislative Agenda.
Legislative priorities we lead:
- Increase funding for the Emergency Services Program by $15 million to support emergency shelter operations across the state.
- Strengthen Housing Support for residents and landlords by increasing the base rate by $100 and waiving temporary absence requirements for individuals in need of healthcare treatment.
- Emergency aid for immediate COVID-19 pandemic response needs.
We also support the work of our coalition partners to further advance racial equity and social justice:
Policies and programs that promote housing stability, prevent homelessness, and recognize housing as health care:
- Eviction reforms that ensure transparency in process and fairly balance the power between
- tenants and landlords when loss of housing is at stake.
- Renters’ assistance to help those with housing keep it.
- Ensure transparency and fair notice of upfront fees and remove discriminatory practices in
- accessing housing.
- Establishment of a Medicaid recuperative care model.
- Implementation of Housing Stabilization Services, and the extension of funding to account
- for enrollment delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Reform housing assistance programs so recipients can maintain more of their personal income.
- Investments in Housing Infrastructure Bonds and expanding eligible uses to include projects for <30% AMI.
Policies and programs that promote the health and well-being of children, adults and families:
- Ensure all Minnesotans have access to comprehensive health care and expanded telehealth options.
- Prioritize COVID-19 testing and vaccination for high-risk populations, including emergency shelter and congregate
- supportive housing residents and staff.
- Strengthen efforts to end hunger and food insecurity, like SNAP.
- Increase access to mental health services, including crisis services in shelters and school-linked mental health.
- Drive innovations for aging in place.
- Prevent domestic violence.
- Increase access to paid family and medical leave and affordable childcare, including the Childcare Assistance Program.
- Increase diversity in the health care workforce and develop structures that help providers of color advance to positions of leadership.
Policies and programs that advance social justice, end racism, and promote economic and community vitality:
- Criminal justice reform and the adoption of standards and ethics centered on advancing human rights and ensuring public confidence in an equitable system, including investing in community prevention programs that improve public safety and ending mass incarceration.
- Remove barriers for people experiencing housing instability to vote, including restoring voter rights.
- End license suspensions for unpaid traffic tickets.
- A robust public transportation system and safe walking and biking paths.
OUR PARTNERS IN SUPPORTING THOSE MOST IN NEED:
City of Minneapolis
City of Saint Paul
Joint Religious Legislative Coalition
Kids Can’t Wait
Legal Services Advocacy Project
Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce
Minneapolis Downtown Council
Minnesota Asset Building Coalition
Minnesota Coalition for the Homeless
Minnesota Department of Health
Minnesota Departmentof Human Services
Minnesota Housing Partnership
Minnesota Social Services Association
Minnesota Leadership Council on Aging
National Alliance on Mental Illness MN
Pillsbury United Communities
Prosperity’s Front Door
Say Yes & Invest
Second Chance Coalition
Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce
Statewide Business Coalitions
This Is Medicaid
2020 Legislative Summary
Minnesota lawmakers returned to the Capitol for the 2020 regular legislative session—the second year of the legislative biennium—on February 11th. With the state’s $48 billion budget already set, lawmakers and advocates entered session with a focus on cost-neutral policy bills, a bonding bill, and a supplemental budget bill to take advantage of a $1.5 billion budget surplus. After just one month, everyone’s intentions were upended by the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Please see our full 2020 Legislative Session Summary for more details.
2020 Legislative Outcomes Snapshot
The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020 forced lawmakers and advocates to pivot from many of their top priorities in order to coordinate the state’s response. As a result, many items on our policy agenda saw mixed results (e.g., programs received one-time funding for emergency relief). This information is a quick snapshot of progress made, taking into account items related to COVID-19, as appropriate. Please see our full 2020 Legislative Outcomes Snapshot for more details.