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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Michelle (Shelly) Christensen (DFL)

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COVID-19 Update

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Rep. Christensen

Dear Neighbors,

My colleagues and I have been moving quickly to respond to health concerns this week, and unanimously passed a bill to ensure that public health officials are prepared to respond to COVID-19, commonly known as the coronavirus. 

$21 million will be transferred to the state’s public health response contingency account to address COVID-19. The bill we passed also includes flexibility to ensure the state is effectively able to address any future strain of the virus. 

Several cases have been reported in Minnesota so far. MDH has set up a public hotline that will be open 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily. The hotline number is 651-201-3920.

We all have a role to play in keeping our neighbors and our communities healthy, and I’m proud the legislature collaborated to take action quickly. We have several other bills in the works, including measures to give Minnesotans access to unemployment insurance to take paid sick leave during such times, and to prevent price gouging of necessary supplies during a state of emergency. 

Please take basic precautions to prevent the spread of the illness, including frequent, thorough hand washing, covering their cough with their sleeve, and staying home when sick. These aren't just to protect you, it's to protect our neighbors and colleagues as well. 

Supporting our Veterans

There should not be a single veteran experiencing homelessness in Minnesota. I had the chance to present my stable housing initiative to the Veterans Affairs committee on Tuesday, which would help coordinate homelessness prevention efforts and provide resources to respond quickly to support to our veterans.


Deep Dive on Education

As a retired teacher and a member of the Education Policy committee, ensuring every child can get a well-rounded education is and always has been a top priority for me. Last week the House education committees organized a day-long deep dive on issues facing our schools, school districts, and families. This symposium was enlightening and informational. The socio-economic and racial disparities in achievement and opportunity in Minnesota are nearly the worst in the nation. The time has come to make change.



Don't forget to apply for your REAL ID! Just over 10% of Minnesotans had applied for theirs by January. But beginning on October 1 you won't be able to use your standard driver's license to board domestic flights. Instead, Minnesotans will need a REAL ID, enhanced driver’s license or ID card, passport or passport card or another acceptable form of identification for federal purposes. The Department of Public Safety is urging Minnesotans to submit applications no later than June 15, 2020. To save time and make sure you have everything you need before you visit a driver’s license office, you can pre-apply online at

As always, feel free to contact me with any questions or comments you have! You can reach me at or (651) 296-4244. It’s an honor to represent our community at the Capitol!


Representative Shelly Christensen

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