Friday, June 19, 2020
Early this morning, on Juneteenth, the Minnesota House passed the Minnesota Police Accountability Act of 2020, a package of legislation focused on reimagining and reforming public safety that was brought forward by the People of Color and Indigenous (POCI) Caucus.
This is a crucial time in our state and Minnesotans are calling on us to do the hard work to enact meaningful reforms now. Without strong accountability measures, people in Black, Indigenous, and communities of color will continue to lack the justice they deserve. This is unacceptable, and we call on Senate Republicans to partner with us to seize this moment and deliver true public safety.
The legislation we passed includes the following:
Reclaiming Community OversightPutting power into the hands of the people and neighborhoods that police officers are sworn to serve and protect.
Reforming AccountabilityRestoring confidence and trust in the systems that are meant to provide justice for all Minnesotans.
Re-Imagining Public SafetyEnding the unacceptable culture that is responsible for the murder of George Floyd and far too many others who look like him.
Also today, Governor Walz issued a proclamation to officially recognize June 19, 2020 as Juneteenth Freedom Day in the State of Minnesota to commemorate the end of slavery in the United States. Governor Walz is also calling on the legislature to work with community to establish a state holiday recognizing Juneteenth.
My colleagues Rep. Ruth Richardson, Hodan Hassan and Mohamud Noor have offered a House Resolution that would recognize June 19 officially as Juneteenth.
We also passed the PROMISE (Providing Resources, Opportunity and Maximizing Investments in Striving Entrepreneurs) Act. The legislation is a comprehensive plan to help businesses rebuild and recover, many of which are owned by Black Minnesotans, immigrants, and people of color. The goal is to preserve the unique character of the impacted commercial and cultural corridors, continue their position as a place for small businesses to emerge and develop, and to keep the community vision central to redevelopment. Specifically, the plan would:
Assistance for Small BusinessThe first bill we approved last Friday and has since been signed into law by the governor created a $62.5 million fund for small business grants. Businesses with 50 or fewer employees can receive grants up to $10,000 each. This is a significant initiative that will provide our local businesses with the assistance they need to stay afloat during these difficult times. Of the $62.5 million total, there are several carve-outs:
Additional Local Opportunities to Help the EastsideMany in our community are still struggling with food and basic supply security. If you are interested in making a donation, the following Give Minnesota fundraisers have been set up and are ready to receive monetary contributions:
Southeast Community Organization has set up new healthcare product distribution site at the Shamrock Plaza Mosque. This is relatively new, and they’ve started to ask for donations.
Here’s what’s needed:
Keep in TouchPlease don’t hesitate to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or input. I always appreciate helping when I can.
It’s an honor to represent out Eastside community at the Capitol.