Today, the Minnesota House and Senate passed a package of bills addressing police accountability and law enforcement reform. Since the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesotans have come together to demand change and action from elected leaders. Below is a statement from Sarah Stoesz, President of Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota Action Fund:
“Since George Floyd was murdered, Minnesotans and people across the world have demanded change. We owe a deep debt to the People Of Color and Indigenous Caucus in the Minnesota Legislature for leading efforts to make progress, and we are proud to stand with a broad coalition supporting the legislation.
"We can stop police brutality in the United States and we know that holding police accountable and reforming law enforcement will improve the health, well-being, and lifespans of Black Minnesotans. The disproportionate killing of Black people at the hands of police runs counter to our commitment to the health and safety of our patients. Our state’s health inequities are unacceptable, and we must do better.
"Let’s be very clear—passing this first package of police accountability bills is just the first step of many substantial and long-lasting changes that need to be made. It is worth celebrating and acknowledging our progress along the way, but we cannot be complacent. It will take years to dismantle the oppression and racism engrained in the fabric of our society, systems, and institutions. I am very hopeful that today’s first step is the beginning of many celebrations of progress along the way.”