This is my very first update from the Capitol for all of you, and it is a Special Session Recap! Last Monday, 12/14/2020 was the seventh Special Session of the Minnesota Legislature since they adjourned in May. They have been called back into session to reup the Governor’s Peacetime Emergency. Each time the emergency is extended by the legislature, things such as expanded access to telemedicine, the eviction moratorium, and many more rules designed to keep our neighbors safe during the pandemic are extended as well.
In the special session of December, there was a large package of over $200 million passed to aid small businesses and extend unemployment for an additional 13 weeks for our fellow Minnesotans. These investments were critical to keeping our neighbors from slipping into poverty. However, despite that great package, there was not a deal between the House and Senate to help people struggling with their rent, or a deal to help our shelter providers continue to provide safe and accessible accommodations. Due to this our advocacy efforts starting right away in January will be focused on emergency dollars for the Emergency Services Program and Housing Assistance. We hope that you will join us by offering your stories, your time, and your advocacy to push housing to the top of the priority list to get emergency funding quickly. Sign up for the Shelter Supporters campaign, and sign up for Action Alerts when they come your way! We hope to see you in person soon, but for the time being your virtual advocacy will make all the difference in getting action on our critical needs.