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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Ami Wazlawik (DFL)

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Legislative Update - Expanding Access to Health Care

Friday, July 23, 2021

Dear neighbors,

I hope you and your loved ones are having a great summer! In this week’s update, I’m going to highlight the great Health and Human Services budget legislators passed a few weeks ago. The bill helps more Minnesotans access affordable health care, addresses racial and economic disparities, and makes historic investments in children and child care. 

As a member of the Early Childhood Finance and Policy Committee, I advocated for several important provisions that were signed into law as part of this budget. I helped secure approximately $300 million to ensure child care providers can keep serving children and their families and to boost compensation for workers who receive poverty-level wages. This investment will help close Minnesota’s persistent opportunity gaps and get more kids off to a great start in life. We delivered funding to expand the supply of affordable child care throughout Minnesota as well. The Health and Human Services budget also includes my bills to expand access to child care for children with disabilities, support child care providers, and help child care professionals stay in the field and earn college credits and degrees. 

The budget includes several measures to help Minnesotans with disabilities live independently, including increased funding for home- and community-based services. It also contains a pay raise for personal care attendants (PCAs) that will help workers attain economic security, encourage them to stay in the field, and recruit more people to these critical positions. 

Other important measures will: 

  • Improve maternal and infant health and close persistent racial disparities in these areas 
  • Extend health care coverage for low-income Minnesotans who’ve given birth recently from 60 days to a full year 
  • Expand telehealth services that people found valuable during the pandemic
  • Help Minnesotans at risk of or experiencing homelessness with stronger funding for emergency shelter and services
  • Strengthen the state’s public health system

Governor Walz Announces Ban on Conversion Therapy

Governor Walz recently issued an executive order banning conversion therapy in Minnesota. This practice, which aims to change a person’s gender identity or sexual orientation, has been rejected by every leading medical and scientific association due to its harmful effect on LGBTQ+ children and their long-term mental health. I’m glad the governor took this important step, and I look forward to voting for a comprehensive ban in the future. You can read more about the new executive order here.

Make Your Voice Heard

Apply for Boards, Councils, and Commissions 

The Secretary of State’s Office recently released a list of the current openings on state boards, councils, and commissions. I encourage you to check out the list and consider applying for any roles that match your interests or skills. It’s a great way to get involved and serve our state and community!

Community Spotlight

Greater White Bear Lake Community Foundation 

The Greater White Bear Lake Community Foundation is a great example of the good that can happen when people come together to strengthen their community. With financial support from donors, the foundation has distributed $173,500 worth of grants to 48 local organizations over the past three years. They have several funds dedicated to various purposes, including a new fund dedicated to helping residents who were impacted by COVID-19. You can learn more about these funds and their work at

As always, you can contact me at or call (651) 296-3018. Have a safe and enjoyable weekend! 


Ami Wazlawik 
State Representative