Civil Rights

‘I didn’t see race in George Floyd.’ Police union speaks for first time since killing.

BY: - June 23, 2020

Minneapolis Police Officers Federation President Bob Kroll called the video of the police killing of George Floyd “horrific,” but he denied the police department needs fundamental change or that racism is common in its ranks. “Our job is to respond to the crimes that we’re dispatched to and to stop and detain and arrest, if […]

Hmong America businesses, already struggling due to pandemic, now picking up pieces after looting

BY: - June 23, 2020

In the early hours of May 28, Rob Yang woke to a slew of missed calls from his security company. He rushed to his St. Paul boutique Phenom to find a broken window and stolen merchandise. After waiting for over two hours for the police to arrive and boarding up the window, he made his […]

Trio of GOP state senators to call for federal investigation of Minneapolis Police Department

BY: - June 22, 2020

Three Republican state senators are calling on U.S. Attorney General Willliam Barr to open an investigation into the Minnesota Police Department’s response to unrest and rioting that broke out after George Floyd’s death. Sen. Scott Newman, R-Hutchinson, Sen. David Senjem, R-Rochester, and Sen. Bill Ingebrigtsen, R-Alexandria, have scheduled a Tuesday news conference to ask for […]

Minnesota GOP lawmaker says Antifa and Muslim organization plan to ‘police Minneapolis under Muslim rule’

BY: - June 22, 2020

A Minnesota lawmaker said last week Antifa and Muslim organizations plan to “police Minneapolis under Muslim rule,” communism is moving into Minneapolis-St. Paul and the state’s Democratic attorney general would like to “close down all of northern Minnesota.”  The Park Rapids Enterprise quoted Rep. Steve Green, R-Fosston, making the comments during a Hubbard County Board […]

Minnesota, the epicenter of a racial reckoning, may not pass police reform after all. Why?

BY: - June 22, 2020

Minnesota earned yet another dubious racial distinction last week: Failing to pass significant police reform legislation, just weeks after a police officer with a troubled history kneeled on the neck of George Floyd for nearly eight minutes, killing him.   The Legislature adjourned its one-week special session with no agreement on policing and criminal justice reforms […]

Hennepin Commissioners want to declare racism a public health crisis

BY: - June 19, 2020

Update: The Hennepin County Board approved the resolution declaring racism a public health crisis on June 30. Hennepin County Commissioners Angela Conley and Irene Fernando plan to introduce a resolution on Tuesday declaring racism a public health emergency in the county. “We need to be explicit about racism,” Conley said. “We need to say that […]

Minneapolis Park Board declares parks are ‘refuge’ for homeless

BY: - June 18, 2020

The Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board approved a resolution Wednesday declaring parks are “refuge space” for people experiencing homelessness, as two encampments in Powderhorn Park have swelled to around 200 tents in less than a week. After adding the resolution to the agenda Wednesday to quickly sanction the Powderhorn encampment, the Board voted 6-2 to […]

House DFL poised to approve wide-ranging police reform package

BY: - June 18, 2020

The House DFL is poised to pass a lengthy list of police reform and accountability measures Thursday night, even as Senate Republicans are set to adjourn the special legislative session after passing a much more limited set of measures this week.  Gov. Tim Walz, surrounded by public safety and DFL elected officials Thursday, urged Republicans […]

Supreme Court rejects Trump administration challenge to DACA

BY: - June 18, 2020

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday salvaged an Obama-era program that has allowed hundreds of thousands of young, unauthorized immigrants known as “Dreamers” to remain in the country without immediate fear of deportation. In a 5-4 decision, Chief Justice John Roberts sided with the court’s liberal wing in finding that the Trump administration […]

Minneapolis Police union wanted training from Tulsa officer under investigation for comments on race

BY: - June 18, 2020

The Minneapolis police union formed a training partnership in 2019 with an Oklahoma police officer who denies the existence of systemic racism in the criminal justice system. Major Travis Yates of the Tulsa Police Department also said recently that Black Americans are not killed by police at disproportionately high rates, once crime rates are factored […]

Easier absentee mail voting coming to August primary election amid pandemic

BY: - June 17, 2020

Minnesota voters will not need a witness to sign their mail-in absentee ballot, and they’ll get extra time to send in their ballot for the August 11 primary election, a state judge ruled Wednesday.  The judge approved a deal struck between DFL Secretary of State Steve Simon and a group of Minnesotans who sued the […]

Senate GOP advances limited police accountability measures over fierce criticism by senators of color

BY: - June 17, 2020

Senate Republicans advanced a handful of police training and accountability measures late Tuesday night, capping off hours of contentious floor debate on bills decried by the chamber’s only legislators of color who said their GOP colleagues bypassed them entirely.  One by one, the five DFL legislators sparred with their Republican counterparts. They demanded to know […]