Senate President Bobby Joe Champion’s Historic Family Unity Legislation Passes Senate   

SAINT PAUL, Minn. – On Thursday, the Minnesota Senate passed the Minnesota African American Family Preservation and Child Welfare Disproportionality Act, landmark legislation that will begin ending disparities in separations of families in child welfare cases.  

“Systematic discrimination and racial disparities affect almost every element of life in America and Minnesota, and the separation of parents, children and siblings is among the most heartbreaking examples,” said Senate President Bobby Joe Champion (DFL-Minneapolis), who chief authored the bill. “We have known for decades that Black families are treated differently in criminal justice, courts, and child protection cases. Even well-meaning reforms have only exacerbated these problems. The disproportionate treatment of Black families have resulted in broken homes and long-term societal damage. 

Most recently, federal civil rights complaint has alleged widespread harm in Hennepin and Ramsey counties. The African American Family Preservation Act recognizes racial disparity in the system and will improve cultural competency, while bolstering those policy changes with critical funding to agencies and programs. The changes enacted by the African American Family Preservation Act will keep families together, and will result in more just outcomes for Black and disproportionately represented children.

I look forward to the House of Representatives joining in this commitment to dramatically improve the lives of African American and underrepresented families and communities.”

Senator Bobby Joe Champion
Senate PresidentSenate District 59
Bobby Joe Champion represents District 59, which includes portions of downtown and north Minneapolis in Hennepin County. He is also an attorney.

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