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ENEWS: International Women’s Day, Trial Updates, Legislation Tracking

Date Published: 03/12/2021

Author: Erin Wilson

International Women’s Day

Happy Women’s History Month, and we wish all women a happy belated International Women’s Day! This has been a devastating year in so many ways for so many people. We must address the immense job losses that working women in the U.S. experienced— please take a few minutes to read “When Women Lose All the Jobs: Essential Actions for a Gender-Equitable Recovery” from the Center for American Progress. In December, CNN reported that the U.S. economy lost 140,000 jobs, and women accounted for all of them. However, it is extremely important to point out the disparities within this statistic— women of marginalized communities in particular have suffered greatly. The statistics from CNN showed Black and Latina women were disproportionately affected by job losses in comparison to white women, who actually “made significant gains.” December had an unemployment rate of 9.1% for Latina women and 8.4% for Black women, while white women experienced the lowest unemployment rate of 5.7%. As Diana Boesch and Shilpa Phadke write in The Center for American Progress report, “The devastating impact of the recession on women of color is not surprising to many researchers and economists who understand that the intersection of long-standing patterns of racial, ethnic, and gender discrimination in policymaking and the labor market mean that women of color have always faced the worst economic outcomes and the greatest financial insecurity.”

Because this year has been so full of grief and exhaustion, please also read “Women around the world share lessons learned during the pandemic” from CNN to hear women across the globe give their words and wisdom about the hardships of this year. 

Chauvin trial updates

These articles from ABC and CNN can catch you up on what has happened so far during the jury selection in the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer charged in the killing of George Floyd. Attorneys are planning to select 14 jurors, two of whom would be alternates. Nine of the 12 potential jurors were dismissed after questioning on Tuesday. As of Thursday morning, six jurors have been selected— five men and one woman. Additionally, Judge Peter Cahill has reinstated the third-degree murder charge against Chauvin after previously dismissing it last fall— you can read about that in the Star Tribune.

Legislative updates

Here are this week’s legislative updates and new bills related to the content of the Minnesota Equity Blueprint. You can find the complete list of legislation we are tracking (including links to bill pages) on our website.

Updates:

Environmental Resilience

HF 1093/SF 1745 Environmental Justice Board establishment in the Pollution Control Agency authorization
HF 2028/SF 1797 Pollution Control Agency authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions clarified
HF 2081 State building energy guidelines required to incorporate provisions on addressing climate change resiliency
HF 2109 Solar photovoltaic device installation in state-owned buildings funding provided, and money appropriated

Economic Development

HF 2068 Entrepreneurial development funding provided, and money appropriated

Infrastructure

HF 430/SF 1903 Greater Minnesota housing infrastructure grant program bond issue and appropriation In hearing 3/11
HF 1916/SF 1904 Housing rehabilitation outside the seven-county metropolitan area appropriation  
HF 1991/SF 1906 Public housing rehabilitation funding provided, bonds issued, and money appropriated In hearing 3/11

Cross-sectional

HF 1278/SF 1814 Great Start for All Minnesota Children Task Force establishment and appropriation

Brandl event reminder 

The annual Brandl event will take place on Friday, March 19 from 11 a.m. to noon over Zoom. This year, it’s titled “The Uncommon Search for Common Ground: Community Policing: The Way Forward for a Divided America.” Panelists will include Minnesota Department of Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington, former Sheriff of Ramsey County Matt Bostrom, and Minnesota Department of Public Safety Assistant Commissioner Booker Hodges. 

The event is free and open to the public. To register, please click here. The Brandl Program is sponsored by the Center of the American Experiment, Citizens League, Growth & Justice, Humphrey School of Public Affairs and the Caux Round Table for Moral Capitalism.

Quote: 

"I know that women will support each other this year like never before because the pandemic has exposed so many social cracks in our communities and we will not passively accept these barriers and inequalities anymore...[Women are] going to make sure the post-pandemic world works better for everyone.” — Amika George in “Women around the world share lessons learned during the pandemic”


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