Author

Grace Deng

Grace Deng

Grace Deng is a reporting intern with the Minnesota Reformer. They're in their final year at Northwestern University, where they study journalism, legal studies and Asian American Studies. The Seattle native has previously been a statehouse intern with USA TODAY Network Ohio and an editorial fellow with Washingtonian Magazine.

House lawmakers advance a bill creating a MinnesotaCare public option for all state residents

By: - February 8, 2023

Minnesota House lawmakers on Wednesday advanced a bill (HF96) to expand the state’s public health insurance program called MinnesotaCare, allowing all Minnesotans to buy in to the program. The MinnesotaCare buy-in proposal would provide affordable, government insurance for workers who need it, including the self-employed and undocumented residents, said chief author of the bill, Rep. […]

Minnesota’s Flint Hills refinery is one of the largest polluters of a toxic metal, according to new report

By: - February 6, 2023

Flint Hills Pine Bend Refinery in Rosemount is one of the largest polluters of a toxic metal called selenium, according to a new report from the Environmental Integrity Project, an organization established by former Environmental Protection Agency regulators. Selenium is toxic to fish and other aquatic life, causing mutations and reproductive problems. Selenium can also […]

Medical students, community protest potential merger between Sanford and Fairview

By: - February 6, 2023

Medical students, health care workers and community members gathered outside a University of Minnesota building on Friday, braving a wind chill of minus 14 degrees to rally against a planned merger between Sanford Health and Fairview Health Services.  “The values of Fairview and Sanford are very different from the University of Minnesota,” said Brianna Wenande, […]

Juneteenth is now a state holiday

By: - February 3, 2023

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz signed a bill to establish Juneteenth as a state holiday on Friday.  Juneteenth, or June 19, commemorates the emancipation of enslaved Black Americans. It marks the day — two-and-a-half years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed — that a group of enslaved people in Galveston, Texas, finally learned they were free. […]

House passes bill to restore voting rights to people released from prison

By: - February 2, 2023

The Minnesota House passed a bill to restore voting rights to people still on parole or probation. The bill heads to the state Senate for a vote.   “People for years and sometimes decades have no stake, have no investment, have no way to be heard,” said Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon at a press […]

Minnesota House passes bill to give driver’s licenses to undocumented residents

By: - January 30, 2023

Minnesota House lawmakers passed a bill 69-60 to give driver’s licenses to undocumented residents on Monday after a decade of advocacy from immigrant rights groups. The bill now heads to the state Senate. “We are filled with hope that we can once again drive without fear,” said leader of the Minnesota Immigrant Movement Jovita Morales […]

After Republicans delay with lengthy debate, Senate passes bill codifying abortion rights

By: - January 27, 2023

Update: The bill passed Saturday morning and heads to the desk of Gov. Tim Walz, who is expected to sign it. Minnesota Senate Republicans launched an informal filibuster to prevent abortion rights from being codified into state law Friday, offering dozens of amendments and speeches that lasted well into Saturday morning.  Democratic-Farmer-Labor lawmakers pressed on […]

Minnesota Senate passes Juneteenth as a state holiday 

By: - January 26, 2023

The Minnesota Senate on Thursday passed a bill to establish Juneteenth as a state holiday.  Juneteenth, or June 19, commemorates the emancipation of enslaved Black Americans. It marks the day in 1865 — two-and-a-half years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed — that a group of enslaved people in Galveston, Texas, finally learned they were […]

Minnesota Senate passes CROWN Act to ban race-based hair discrimination

By: - January 26, 2023

The Minnesota Senate on Thursday passed the CROWN Act, which prohibits discrimination against hair texture and styles. The CROWN Act, which stands for “Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair Act,” protects “traits associated with race, including but not limited to hair texture and hair styles such as braids, locs, and twists.” “I […]

DFL legislators advance bill to limit interest rates on payday loans

By: - January 25, 2023

House legislators on Wednesday advanced a bill to limit sky-high interest rates on payday loans, which advocates say often trap borrowers into a cycle of debt.  “These lenders make it their mission to target people who don’t have access to a bank account — or who don’t have access to a traditional loan — and […]

Right to abortion passes Minnesota House, heads to Senate

By: - January 19, 2023

The Minnesota House passed a bill that would codify the right to an abortion into state law Thursday over Republican opposition, bringing Democrats a step closer to fulfilling a campaign promise.  The bill, known as the PRO Act, establishes that Minnesotans have a “fundamental right to make autonomous decisions” about their reproductive health care — […]

DFL trifecta brings renewed effort in Legislature to ban conversion therapy for minors

By: - January 18, 2023

Human rights advocates, faith leaders and a group of University of Minnesota Medical School students in white doctor coats were at the Legislature Wednesday in support of a bill to ban so-called conversion therapy for children.   Conversion therapy, which has been discredited by medical and scientific evidence, attempts to change a person’s sexual orientation or […]