On July 20, during the 2020 2nd Special Session, the Minnesota House of Representatives adopted House Resolution 1, thereby voting to declare racism a public health crisis. According to the official resolution, the declaration applies to the entire state and affirms that the Minnesota House will be an active participant in the dismantling of racism. It creates a House Select Committee on Minnesota’s response tasked with analyzing legislative work through an intersectional race equity lens.
“This is about advancing and promoting equitable opportunity across all of our systems, in the areas of health, education, housing, public safety, and economic and workforce development,” said Rep. Ruth Richardson (DFL-Mendota Heights), chief author of the resolution. “The COVID-19 pandemic and senseless murder of George Floyd have shined a light on the historical and contemporary injustices that are still embedded in our society.”
Minnesota joins more than 20 cities and counties and at least three states, Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin, to declare racism a public health crisis.
On September 8, 2020, House Speaker Melissa Hortman announced membership of the new Select Committee on Racial Justice. The Committee will have its first public meeting September 22, 2020.