Equity & Justice

It’s critical that we take action on one of the toughest challenges we’re facing as a state: inequity. I believe that, to tackle disparities in Minnesota, we must view all issues – from healthcare and education to economic opportunity and housing – through an intersectional lens that considers the unique ways in which race, gender, sexuality, religion, and ability affect the experiences of each Minnesotan.

+ RACIAL & INDIGENOUS EQUITY

Disparities for communities of color and indigenous communities in Minnesota are some of the worst in our country, making Minnesota the second most unequal state to live in. We’ve got to change.

  • We can tackle health disparities by working to disrupt our health care delivery models. I authored legislation in 2010, Health Care Homes, which asks providers to directly reach out to people in their care. It saved the state a billion dollars, but also reduced health disparities for people of color.
  • We can’t build a strong economy without closing the significant wage gap faced by people of color and indigenous people – and specifically women of color and indigenous women – ending workplace discrimination, and ensuring that all Minnesotans make a wage that supports themselves and their families.
  • We can close the opportunity gap by investing in pre-k and early learning, providing home visits, and hiring teachers of color who represent the communities in which they’re working.
  • We know that people of color and indigenous Minnesotans are often treated differently by our criminal justice system. It’s why I support cannabis legalization that includes record expungement, a process for releasing non-violent offenders, and support for them as they transition out of the criminal justice system.
  • It is also critical to our democracy that we restore the vote for Minnesotans who have served their time for felony convictions. Voting is a sacred right and it is a powerful tool in building strong, powerful communities.

+ GENDER EQUITY

We must continue to fight for gender equity and create a state in which women are able to make their own choices about their health, careers, and private lives without intrusion or retaliation.

  • We must author legislation that closes the pay gap between men and women, as well as the significant pay gap between white women and women of color and indigenous women.
  • We must create cultural change through policies that require affirmative consent, enhanced education, and aggressive action against sexual harassment and violence.
  • I’ll fight not only for reproductive choice, but for reproductive justice as well, ensuring that all women have access to affordable healthcare, contraception, and abortion services.

+ LGBTQ + EQUITY

I have worked with advocacy groups to expand rights for the LGBTQ+ community, and when I was Majority Leader we passed marriage equality with the help of thousands of Minnesotans. But we can’t rest on that work.

  • I’ll work to streamline processes related to changing one’s gender or name on official identification cards.
  • Right now the ability for trans Minnesotans to access the care they need depends on what their insurance will cover. That’s not right, and I’ll work to ensure trans Minnesotans get the coverage they need, and when they do, aren’t forced to jump through unnecessary hoops to access it.
  • I vehemently oppose efforts that discriminate and dehumanize LGBTQ+ Minnesotans, like conversion therapy and so-called “bathroom bills” dictating who can use public bathrooms.

+ DISABILITY EQUITY & ACCESSIBILITY

For Minnesotans with disabilities, our communities are often inaccessible, making it difficult to get to work, school, or the doctor’s office. Not to mention, folks with disabilities are often not at the table when we’re making decisions that will directly affect them.

  • I want to ensure sure that everything from public transit and sidewalks to malls and restaurants are fully accessible.
  • I’ll fight to ensure that individuals with disabilities and their families have control over the care and services they receive.
  • Let’s ensure that people with disabilities are fully included in their schools, workplaces, and communities and are able to live independently for as long as they choose by investing in the services and affordable housing options that make it possible.