Sponsored by Representative Jim Abeler of Anoka, HF128 would cut funding for children and community services, county child support administration, emergency Minnesota Supplemental Aid (MSA) and adult mental health services—-all necessary services in our community at the moment.
This bill would have lasting negative effects on our communities, but Representative Abeler says in the Session Weekly, that these cuts must happen because, “we are faced with a challenge that’s bigger than anybody ever had with less resources to draw on.” No one can argue that we don’t have fewer resources, however the the budget cuts that Rep. Abeler has sponsored, assist Minnesotans in addressing huge challenges that would rival Minnesota’s budget issues such as dependency, abuse, neglect, poverty, and chronic health conditions. I urge him to go tell the aged, blind and disabled who are eligible MSA, or the parents across the state who depend on the quick processing of their child support checks that Minnesota’s challenges are bigger than theirs.
Reducing the funding that these programs receive will not help our state. As he proposes cutting $38.5 million dollars to children and community services, I ask him to think about the ways in which these programs contribute to closing the achievement gap. We have one of the largest disparities between whites and people of color. We cannot become a great state when we are leaving so many intelligent people behind. These more deeply rooted problems need to be addressed.
I urge all non-profits in our community to take a strong stance on these issues, be bold in our statements and most importantly, stick together in this time of crisis. We need to advocate for the importance of all of our programs and educate those of us, like Representative Jim Abeler, that these budget cuts will cost our society in the future.
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