Minnesota’s 2022 Legislative Session begins today and we’ve already begun the proactive fight for sexual and reproductive health care, comprehensive and inclusive sex education, and investments in our Minnesota communities. Your action and advocacy this year will be crucial to setting priorities at the Capitol.
Here are some of our key legislative priorities:
1. Protect Minnesotans’ Reproductive Freedom.
Abortion access is at risk like never before. We know we’ve said this a lot, but we truly mean it this time. The U.S. Supreme Court is expected to decide on Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization this June. If they overturn or erode the federal right to abortion established by Roe v. Wade (as many expect), abortion rights will be determined at the state level.
Emboldened by the U.S. Supreme Court’s inaction in S.B. 8, Texas’s abortion ban, Representative Miller introduced a similar ban on the first day of Legislative Session. The proposed bill would prohibit abortion before most people know they are pregnant.
Minnesota currently has strong protection against this ban thanks to champions in our state House and Senate as well as our pro-reproductive health governor. We have additional protection thanks to the 1995 ruling in Doe v. Gomez. In this case, the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled that Minnesotans have a fundamental right to access abortion.
However, these protections are only safe as long as sexual and reproductive health advocates lead our state government. If legislators determined to ban abortion take control of our state government, they could quickly pass harmful abortion bans and even move to change the constitution—like we see happening to our neighbors in Iowa.
We must ensure access is guaranteed, no matter what. That’s why we’re advocating for the Protect Reproductive Options (PRO) Act. This bill will:
- establish the fundamental right of Minnesotans to make individual decisions about reproductive health care, including contraception, abortion, and pregnancy; and
- prevent politicians from interfering with a person’s fundamental right to make their own reproductive health care decisions.
The decision about whether and when to become a parent is one of the most important life decisions we make. It’s up to us to protect the freedom to make these important health care decisions.
2. Establish Comprehensive Sex Education Requirements
Right now, sex education standards in Minnesota are piecemeal. Some students receive comprehensive sex education, while others are provided narrowly focused sex education that fails to share essential information youth need to stay healthy, and often fails to provide inclusive information for folks who are not heterosexual and cisgender.
Planned Parenthood North Central States’ sex educators and researchers have witnessed how comprehensive sex education supports healthy youth development, delays sexual activity, increases use of contraception when young folks become active, and teaches the importance of consent.
Minnesotans deserve this healthy start. That’s why we’re advocating for sex education that is consent-centered, LGBTQ-inclusive, medically and scientifically accurate, and age-appropriate across the state.
3. Increase Funding for Sexual and Reproductive Health Care
Minnesota has a budget surplus of $7.7 billion and this session legislators will determine how to spend it. Governor Tim Walz has proposed an additional $3 million be dedicated to Family Planning Special Projects (FPSP)—this is crucial!
Not all Minnesotans can afford the health care services they need to be healthy or plan their families. That is where FPSP grants come in. The grants provide low-income, high risk individuals pre-pregnancy family planning services.
We need to make sure that all Minnesotans can access and afford the health care they need. As part of the broader Reproductive Health Alliance, we will advocate for this proposed budget increase to state family planning grant programs.
4. Protect and Expand Birth Control Access
Did you know nearly 9 in 10 women of reproductive age will use contraception at some point in their lives? And birth control access affects more than just women. That’s why Planned Parenthood is committed to ensuring that Minnesotans have easy, affordable access to contraceptives and other reproductive health services.
It’s past time to pass the Protect Access to Contraception (PAC) Act. This bill will:
- require health insurance plans to cover birth control at no out-of-pocket cost; and
- allow patients to receive up to a full-year supply of oral contraceptives at one time, covered by insurance.
All people deserve access to birth control. Minnesotans should have the ability to plan their families and their futures by accessing the birth control method that is right for them, regardless of cost and free of political interference.
Keep watch for updates on these issues and more! We provide legislative updates on sexual and reproductive health and education, important action alerts, and ways to get involved via our email and social media. Connect with us: