It is not normal to have more mass shootings than days in a year, and yet we’ve had three in the past few weeks. It’s not normal to have guns as the leading cause of death in children. This is an issue unique to America, and we know it doesn’t have to be this way. We have the power to break the cycle.
We know that common-sense gun safety reforms such as red flag laws and universal background checks can meaningfully address gun violence in our communities. I have worked on a bipartisan basis with colleagues across the aisle to find areas of commonality to address gun deaths by suicide and mass shootings. These conversations are complex and we’re not there yet, but I believe that dialogue and difficult conversations are the only way to make meaningful progress on this intractable and totally avoidable issue in our society. I will not stop fighting for the safety of our kids and our communities.
As required by the state constitution, the legislature adjourned last Monday. We have made progress on a long list of priorities for Minnesotans across the state.
Giving bonuses to frontline workers who could not work from home.
Distributing unprecedented amounts of money to address the opioid crisis.
Making the largest investment in high-speed broadband internet in state history.
Funding public health infrastructure to keep people healthy and safe as the COVID-19 pandemic evolves.
Protecting and supporting veterans and Gold Star families.
Replenishing funding for Minnesota’s Unemployment Insurance Program, keeping businesses’ unemployment insurance tax rates flat.
Extending the COVID-19 worker’s comp presumption for first responders, including firefighters, police officers, paramedics, and more.
Reducing the cost of health insurance for those who use the individual market.
Modernizing state liquor laws to support Minnesota’s breweries and distilleries.
Funding nation-leading ALS research.
Providing relief to farmers impacted by the 2021 drought and delivering resources to control and contain the avian influenza outbreak.
Preventing Republicans from infringing on a woman’s right to make her own health care decisions.
Despite the substantive legislation, final agreements were not reached on our complete supplemental budget. The DFL House has focused on reducing costs for families, helping workers get ahead, and improving public safety all year. We hope to continue working with the Republican-held Senate in good faith to find as many agreements as possible because that’s what Minnesotans expect of their elected representatives. We need to find common ground.
On May 17, The House of Representatives unanimously passed my legislation to provide new nation-leading student privacy protections governing student surveillance and protections around access by technology providers to student data. The bill also unanimously passed the Senate.
We are taking huge steps forward in adapting student data privacy protections to the modern age. Private technology providers have unprecedented access to student information, both when they are in the classroom and when they are at home using their school-issued devices.
This bill creates new protections around this data and prohibits the use of this data to advertise products to students and families. It also limits remote surveillance of students, which has been demonstrated to have unintended negative consequences for LGBTQ students, students of color, neurodivergent students, and on student mental health.
I am proud that the Student Data Privacy Act was one of the key legislative achievements of this session highlighted in a recent article in the Star Tribune.
My legislation requiring that all schools provide free menstrual products to students was passed as part of the House Education bill. This issue came to the light from several amazing students who stood up, advocated, and shared a common belief: that no student should miss school because they can't afford menstrual products. I urge our Republican-led Senate to join us in reaching an agreement on this vital legislation for our students.
If you have questions, ideas, or feedback that you’d like to share, please don’t hesitate to reach out. You can email me at email@example.com or call (651) 296-4331.