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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Jean Wagenius (DFL)

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Legislative Update - April 1, 2020

Wednesday, April 01, 2020

Rep. Wagenius

Dear neighbors, 

I want to wish all our educators, students, and parents the best as they prepare to begin distance learning on Monday, April 6. I appreciate all the work teachers and administrators are doing to ensure students can continue their studies during the COVID-19 pandemic.  


Resources for MPS Students and Families

Minneapolis Public Schools will continue providing free meals for children 18 and under, but the district is transitioning from daily to weekly food pick-ups. Starting this week, families will be able to pick up a box of food per child at nearly 50 sites across the city. Each box will contain five breakfasts and five lunches, for a total of 10 meals. Click here to find a food distribution site near you and view daily schedules.

MPS is also distributing Chromebooks to students that need them to connect with their teachers. Families that filled out a survey about their device needs will receive a call about picking up devices this week. Families that didn’t fill out the survey can request a Chromebook by filling out a form, linked here.


Resources for RPS Students and Families

Richfield Public Schools is providing free food for children 18 or younger as well. Families can get grab & go meals between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. at any school location. School buses are also distributing meals at bus stops. Click here for more information. Please note that RPS will not offer meals this Friday, April 3 because it is a district holiday. Double meals will be available on Thursday, April 2.


Local Action on COVID-19

The City of Minneapolis, the City of Richfield, and Hennepin County have all declared states of emergency in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Information about response efforts in Minneapolis and Richfield is available here and here, respectively. Information about Hennepin County’s response is available here.

USI Wireless has opened their networks for free use in Minneapolis. For free access, connect to “USI Wireless” or “City of Minneapolis Public WiFi.” A map of WiFi hotspots in Minneapolis is available here, and more information on this service can be found here.

This week, the City of Minneapolis is closing some popular streets to provide more protected space for pedestrians and bikes and make it easier for people to maintain a six-foot distance between themselves and others. Details are available here.


Reminder: Participate in Democracy and Be Counted in the 2020 Census

Today, Wednesday, April 1st, is National Census Day. Today is a good day to participate in our democracy if you have not already.

The census provides crucial data that is used to inform where billions in federal funding are spent. Our state receives funding for schools, roads and bridges, and other services we all rely on. Census data also impacts representation at the local, state, and national level because it is used to redraw legislative districts to account for population changes. A strong, accurate count is necessary to ensure fair distribution of resources and equal representation.

When you respond to the census, you’ll share information about where you live as of that date. By now, you should have received an invitation in the mail to respond to the census. Please take a few minutes to complete your census forms if you haven’t already done so. Additional information is available here. At the link you can check the response rates for Minnesota and Hennepin County. We are doing well and with your help we will continue to lead!


Please don’t hesitate to contact me if I can be of assistance during this challenging time. You can reach me by email at rep.jean.wagenius@house.mn or by phone at 651-296-4200.

Sincerely,

Jean Wagenius
State Representative

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