In my first term as your State Representative I’ve worked hard to prioritize communicating and reaching out to you and members of our community through town halls, office hours, constituent meetings, emails and phone calls, and of course this weekly newsletter. That’s why it’s important that I give you a heads up about an important deadline -- July 22nd -- that will change the way I can communicate with you through the end of the year.
This Friday, July 22nd marks the 60-day deadline out from the legislative session after which state law prohibits members of the legislature from proactively reaching out to constituents through town halls and e-updates from my legislative office. This law is designed to keep our elections fair and competitive by ensuring that incumbent candidates don’t use official resources for an advantage in the months leading up to an election. I can still respond to your calls, emails and events if you reach out to me and our office.
Though this is an important measure in election fairness, it is also hard for me because I believe district outreach and sharing information is extremely important so you can know about my work and our work together in the community. Please continue to reach out to my office - you can always reach me at email@example.com. And I will continue to provide information and resources in the interim through my official Facebook and on Twitter.
Minnesota Protects Abortion Access
After the Supreme Court’s decision overturning Roe v. Wade, Minnesota has an important role in providing safe and legal abortioncare to women in Minnesota and those traveling from neighboring states who have rushed to ban abortion. This week, I joined my colleagues in the Reproductive Freedom Caucus to tour Whole Woman’s Health Clinic, met their amazing staff, and learned about the compassionate, safe, and affordable abortion care they are providing. The clinic, like abortion clinics throughout Minnesota, is seeing an uptick in out-of-state patients seeking abortion care in Minnesota as other states restrict and ban abortion access.
And we got some good news on that front this week with the state court ruling striking down many of Minnesota’s outdated and harmful abortion restrictions. Ramsey County District Judge Thomas Gilligan struck down laws related to parental notification, hospitalization, mandated physician care and informed consent. The district court held that these unnecessary restrictions violated the rights provided in the Minnesota Constitution. Women who are making a tough decision about their own healthcare shouldn’t have to jump through hoops to get the care they deserve and need. This will help clinics like Whole Woman’s Health provide more timely and responsive care and expand the pool of available providers at a moment when that is urgently needed to serve the uptick of patients.
It is critical that we are standing up and standing together for reproductive freedom for everyone. I’m proud to have stood with thousands of Minnesotans and my fellow members of the Reproductive Freedom Caucus Sunday at the March for Abortion Access. We’re working to protect and expand reproductive healthcare in our state, not only for Minnesotans, but so we can care for those who need abortion access in our entire region.
First Indigenous Regent for UMN
Our House Higher Education Committee frequently discussed the importance of having Indigenous representation on the University of Minnesota Board of Regents, a board that often makes decisions affecting Native students and the sovereign tribes in Minnesota. This week, Governor Walz and Lieutenant Governor Flanagan announced the appointment of Tadd Johnson to the board, making him the first Indigenous regent in state history.
This historic appointment is made possible by the continued advocacy of tribes and community members across the state to see representation at every level. Congrats, Regent Johnson!
Visiting Policy Staff from Malaysia and Indonesia
This week, I was honored to have a chance to visit and welcome Afiqah Zulkifli, a Parliamentary and Policy Officer for the Muar Member of Parliament, Syed Saddiq as well as Akbar Nurdin, Junior Manager for Inter-Institutional Affairs at the Indonesia Social Security agency for employment. I learned so much from them!
They are visiting in partnership with our City Councilmember Emily Koski to exchange information on best practices in local governance and urban planning. We had a great conversation about State Government systems and policy!
Thank you for your time!
If you have any questions or feedback you’d like to share, you can reach me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (651) 296-4200.