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ENEWS: 20th anniversary tickets available, redistricting, & Widening Inequality in MN

Date Published: 03/03/2022

Author: Erin Wilson

Get your ticket today for G & J’s 20th anniversary celebration on April 11! 

Tickets are available now for our 20th anniversary celebration on April 11! You can read about the event and register on this Eventbrite page. The event is free and virtual. Donations in honor of our anniversary are welcome at https://www.growthandjustice.org/support. More speakers and details will be announced soon. 

Democracy, Voter Rights & Suppression, and Redistricting

For democracy, voter rights and redistricting news this week, we’re pointing to this Star Tribune article: “Redistricting creates new ‘powerhouse’ districts for Minnesota tribes.” After the state’s recent release of new district maps, all seven of Minnesota's Anishinaabe tribes are included in the Eighth Congressional District, rather than split between two seats as prior to redistricting. This comes after more than 100 years of dividing the tribes into two districts. The new maps not only give more power to Native voices, but increase the chance for tribes to nominate a Native person to the State Legislature. 

“‘These are the maps for 10 years, so there's a real opportunity here to build engagement with communities that have been historically divided and disengaged,’” Rep. Jamie Becker-Finn (a descendant of the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe) said to the Star Tribune in the article. 

Reflecting on G & J’s influential publications: Widening Inequality in Minnesota (2013)

In honor of our 20th anniversary celebration this spring, we’re putting together a timeline of the most influential Growth & Justice policy publications over the years. In each week’s e-news, we’ll feature a notable past publication for your review and reflection. This week will focus on Widening Inequality in Minnesota (2013). 

Widening Inequality in Minnesota was a 2013 report that gave a comprehensive analysis of economic inequality trends in Minnesota and nationwide. It was followed up by a second report in 2015, Widening  Inequality in Minnesota: A county-by-county analysis, which further analyzed increasing economic and racial disparities (we’ll link to this report next week!) and demonstrated Growth & Justice’s commitment to serving as a leading voice on inequality research. The 2013 report examines how market factors and public policy decisions influence inequality. It explains the evidence and “[recommends] a measure of policy impact on inequality, the Economic Inequality Impact Assessment (EIIA), which would accompany all economically significant legislation in the State.”

“The share of income going to the top 1% in America has risen dramatically over the past three decades. By this measure, in recent years inequality has reached historically high levels. As incomes have stagnated through the rest of the income distribution, the incomes of the wealthiest 1% have shot skyward. In 2010, as the economy began to rebound, 93% of the increase in aggregate household income was captured by the richest 1% of families,” the report states. 

Minnesota’s Climate Action Framework 

Join the Climate Action Framework Community Conversation on March 16 from 1-3 p.m. for an opportunity to discuss Minnesota’s climate future and hear about the State of Minnesota’s draft Framework, which lays out the plan and action steps to address climate change in our state. Learn more about the discussion and how to join here. 

MN Equity Map spotlight 

This week’s spotlight is on the Northwest Minnesota Foundation. Read the full story on the Equity Map and follow our social media for more story summaries! Please add more stories by filling out this form if you or your organization/initiative would like to be featured on the map! 

The Northwest Minnesota Foundation (Bemidji, MN) serves 12 counties in northwest Minnesota by assisting with strategic planning and training programs for educators, as well as economic development, equity & inclusion planning and more. Examples of their work include the creation of the Emergency Child Care Grant program that provides immediate financial support for child care providers and the Communities Thrive program, which helps communities capitalize on the trend of college educated populations migrating to rural communities. Read their story on the map and find them at https://www.nwmf.org. (Equity Map story written by David Ayers-Moran)

Quote:

“Uniting the tribes makes them a constituency that can't be ignored by any member of Congress in northern Minnesota going forward, said Tadd Johnson, director of American Indian Tribal Nations Relations at the University of Minnesota. 

“‘It's kind of like the tribes have been clearing their throats for decades," he said. "Suddenly they have this voice.’" — Tadd Johnson, director of American Indian Tribal Nations Relations at the University of Minnesota, as quoted in the Star Tribune


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