March 28, 2023
ST. PAUL, Minn. (April 25, 2016) — The state Council on Asian Pacific Minnesotans on Monday released this update on the current legislative session.
Exploited Women and Children Rental Assistance Program Bill: A request for state funding to a 2-year transitional rental voucher pilot program for women and children, in emerging communities, who are victims of domestic violence. Included in this proposal are other forms of gender-based violence, which put women and children at risk of becoming homeless. This program is designed with women from our community in mind, but will also be accessible to all victims, regardless of their race or ethnicity.

S.F. 311  Authors: Johnson (Chief-Author), Hayden, Saxhaug, Ingebrigsten, and Hawj.

  • Included in the Senate’s Natural Resources, Economic Development, and Agricultural Budget Committee omnibus bill
  • We had a strong and diverse group of men and women present to support the bill in committee. Victim advocates were there to testify on the necessity for more resources to help Asian women and their children.
  • Please call Senator Tomassoni (Committee Chair) and Senator Johnson (Chief-Author) to thank them for their support and leadership.

H.F. 335  Authors: Clark (Chief-Author), Gunther, Laine, Cornish, Liebling, Hamilton, Ward and Johnson, S., Fischer, Allen, Hilstrom, Norton, Slocum, and Kahn.

  • We continue to lobby legislators for their support on this initiative, and work with Representative Clark for this proposal to be brought before conference committee this session.
  • Please call Representative Clark to thank her for the incredible leadership and determination she has put forth this session.

Working Group on Violence Against Asian Women and Children: A collaboration between stakeholder agencies to implement a study on the nature, scope, and prevalence of violence against Asian women and children in Minnesota. A multi-disciplinary advisory group will oversee the study and report back to the Legislature in 2017 on the study’s findings and recommendations. The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) is currently completing the final steps of the contract selection process.

High-Priority Bills
As the 2016 session moves forward, the Council strives to bring the needs of the Asian Pacific community into the conversation. Governor Dayton has made diversity and equity one of the primary focuses for this session, and it is important that our community remains a visible presence to lawmakers as they make key funding allocations and fine-tune their budget proposals. Given the Governor’s request for specific supplemental budget allocations towards reducing economic disparities and inequity, there have been several proposals this session that would provide opportunities for economic growth and increased opportunities for Asian Pacific Minnesotans.

Finance Committee Equity Division: This session marked the establishment of the Equity Subdivision of the Senate Finance Committee. The Equity Committee was charged with reducing the growing economic and racial disparities across Minnesota.  On Wednesday evening, Equity Co-Chairs, Senator Hayden and Senator Champion presented a $91 million proposal for programs in economic development, food access, and technical assistance for minority-owned nonprofits and businesses to the Senate Finance Committee.

Women of Color Opportunities Act: Representative Moran introduced the Women of Color Opportunities Act, a multi-faceted approach to increase opportunities for Minnesota’s women and girls in our cultural communities to succeed and prosper—in school, in the workforce, and in small business ownership. This package instructs state agencies to implement competitive grant programs for community-based organizations and educational entities that have experience working with women and girls of color. The Council has been supporting Representative Moran and community members to advance the Women of Color Opportunities Act, which continues to gain traction in the Senate.

The Women of Color Opportunities Act includes bills addressing needs in:


  • H.F. 3031/S.F. 2885: Increasing the academic success of girls of color, leading to reduced school suspensions, increased on-time high school graduation rates, and pursuit of post-secondary education.
  • H.F. 3032/S.F. 2865: Encouraging girls of color to explore and pursue STEM careers.
  • H.F. 3033/S.F. 2916: Educating women and girls of color in financial literacy.

Workforce Development:

  • H.F. 3098/S.F. 3056: Increasing the number of women of color in high-wage, high-demand, nontraditional jobs—the skilled trades and STEM occupations—through job skills training and apprenticeships.

Small Business Development:

  • H.F. 3099/S.F. 2931: Providing small business loans and technical assistance to businesses owned by women of color.

Representative Moran will be hosting a town hall forum with Lt. Governor Tina Smith regarding issues of racial equity for women and girls of color. See the Upcoming Events section below for more information on this important discussion.

We encourage the members of the Asian-Pacific community to contact your legislator to express either support or concern if any of the bills have an impact on you and your community.

Not sure who represents you? Find out here:
For an explanation on how a bill becomes law in Minnesota, visit our State Legislature’s website.

If you have questions about the listed bills, please email the Council’s Research Analyst at[email protected]

Upcoming Events
Town Hall on Racial Equity for Women & Girls of Color
Hosted by Representative Rena Moran & Lieutenant Governor Tina Smith
When: Wednesday April 27, 6:00-7:30 pm
Where: City View Grille, Saint Paul College
235 Marshall Avenue Saint Paul, MN 55102
Click here for more details.

LIMITED SEATS AVAILABLE for the 2016 Asian Leadership Awards Dinner!
When: Friday May 20, 5:00 to 8:00 PM.
Where: Maplewood Community Center
2100 White Bear Ave, Maplewood, MN 55109
Click here for more details.

Stay tuned for more information on the upcoming 2016 Legislative Session Recap Event!

API-Relevant Bills this Session

Employment and Economic Development




Human Services


Make your concerns heard!
Community members concerned about the proposed budgets and policies are encouraged to:

Contact CAPM for general inquiries at [email protected]

If you have questions about any bill or wish to testify on any of the listed bills, please email the Council’s Research Analyst at[email protected].

Write a letter to your state representative or senator or to the governor. Find your legislator using the state’s district finder. View tips and FAQ about writing to your legislator here.

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