Calls to Action from ISAIAH: Stop Pre-emption/Protect Healthcare

  1. Pre-emption: Despite many, many phone calls from constituents, Sen. Draheim voted in the Senate Jobs Committee to move the pre-emption bill forward. This bill would nullify paid sick days ordinances in Minneapolis and Saint Paul and undermines the local power of cities and counties. We recommend calling Senator Draheim's office regularly to express your disappointment over this vote and your hope that he will change his mind and put his constituents’s interests over corporate interests. While you are at it give the Governor a call too to make sure he vetos pre-emption if is crosses his desk.
    1. Senator Draheim: (651) 296-5558 (attached is a script and draft op-eds that should give you talking points)
    2. Governor Dayton: 651-201-3400
  2. Protect Medicaid: Congressman Jason Lewis is soliciting feedback on health care. Let’s make sure he hears from us! https://jasonlewis.house.gov/forms/form/?ID=2#.WJjlVWWSTNo.facebook
    1. Let him know that we will not be fooled by talked about “block granting” medicaid which is just a way to cut funding and pass off impossible choices to states. This puts the most vulnerable in our state at risk. We must stop any cuts to medicaid! See attachments for medicaid facts in MN. 
    2. Then let’s go visit him soon and ask to see the results of the survey. 
  3. Rally for Health Care: Attend a rally for Minnesota Care for All at the capitol at 2pm on Valentines Day. We will take action to show how we love our neighbors by fighting for quality health care for all and say no to tax payer give-aways to private insurance companies. More info on the rally can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/events/642440389214233/
     

    Script to call Sen. Draheim:

    (651) 296-5558

     

    Hi, my name is _____________________ and I am a constituent.

    “I am calling because I am VERY concerned and outraged by Senate File 580. This bill is a fundamental threat to our local democracy and local government. In Greater Minnesota we see this as a power grab from wealthy corporations from the cities or out of state who have no stake in or interest in supporting the health and wellbeing of our local communities. Please VOTE NO on Senate File 580… do not sell out our local communities and our principles of democracy to already wealthy corporations. Stand with the people and local governments in your district, not high paid lobbyists.”

     

    Why people in Greater MN should be outraged about “Pre-emption”.

    Maybe you’ve heard the term “pre-emption” tossed around in news around this legislative session in Minnesota. Maybe you figured this was some obscure policy that would have no real impact on you or your community. Here are some reasons we think you should pay attention:

    The speaker of the House has called pre-emption one of his top priorities in 2017, but what is it? Pre-emption simply means that the state pre-empts—or over-rides—local policy-making. It is a way to take away local city or county control on a whole set of policy decisions. Pre-emption in other states has had far reaching implications from public health, public safety, zoning and land use, workforce policy, environmental regulations, and even human rights.

    Why? Let’s be very clear, this is a corporate power grab. This type of legislation has been sweeping the nation driven by conservative groups like the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) to consolidate corporate power at the state level where high paid lobbyists already have more influence than you or me. State government should be responsible for setting minimum standards for the state and then cities and counties should have the power to assess their unique context and build on these minimums. But large corporations with no stake in our local communities would prefer for the minimum standard to be made law for the entire state.

    House File 600 and Senate File 580 would make it impossible for cities and counties to pass their own minimum wages, sick days, paid and unpaid leave, and scheduling policies. If passed they would undo the progress made in Minneapolis and Saint Paul to get 150,000 workers access to paid sick days. This is a “one-size fits all” mandate that ignores unique needs and values of our communities.

    The most insidious part of pre-emption is that it undermines our very principles of democracy. In Greater Minnesota, you probably know your mayor and many of the people on your city council. There is a good chance you go to church with them or your kids play sports together. City and County government is a key avenue for people like us to raise our concerns about all sorts of things like your schools, access to clean energy, workforce development, or housing. When the legislature puts a “one size fits all” mold on the entire state, unique local needs and values are ignored and you and your local government have less of an ability to solve local problems.

    Anything that takes away power from local democracy and gives more power to the already wealthy and powerful corporate lobbyists in Saint Paul is bad for Minnesota. In Greater Minnesota we are entrepreneurial; we innovate; we get creative to solve our problems; we are civically engaged. We know our neighbors and we care deeply about one another. We should be trusted to make our own decisions.
     

    Greater Minnesota Cities and Counties Should be Concerned about “Pre-emption”

    In the past week, the House and Senate in Minnesota have introduced a bill (HF 600/SF 580) that has been called state “pre-emption.” These bills sound like policy jargon that only people “under the dome” would care about, but it is important that people in Greater Minnesota understand what is at stake.

    Pre-emption is part of a national strategy among powerful and wealthy corporate lobbyists to consolidate power at the state level. Pre-emption simply means that the state pre-empts—or over-rides—local policy-making. It is a way to take away local city or county control on a whole set of policy decisions. Pre-emption in other states has had far reaching implications from public health, public safety, zoning and land use, workforce policy, environmental regulations, and even human rights.

    These recent bills would specifically undermine local control to build on state minimum standards around wages, sick days, paid and unpaid leave, and fair scheduling policies.

    Already high paid lobbyists at the capitol out-number us “regular” people on many of these issues. Through ISAIAH, we have been pushing for paid family leave and paid sick time policies at the state level that would give hard working families paid time off to care for their loved ones when they are sick. These policies poll incredibly high among Minnesotans in every corner of the state, and yet they have not been able to move far at the state capitol, why? Because corporate lobbyists have undue influence on our legislators.

    This is why many have turned to the city level. ISAIAH leaders in Minneapolis and Saint Paul have worked in partnership with their cities to pass their own paid sick days policies that will give 150,00 mostly low income workers sick days to care for themselves or their loved ones. This victory undermines the gridlock corporations at the capitol have created, and is why pre-emption it a top priority for them this session.

    So, why should those of us in Northfield or Greater Minnesota care?

    The most insidious part of pre-emption is that it undermines our very principles of democracy. In Greater Minnesota, you probably know your mayor and many of the people on your city council. There is a good chance you go to church with them or your kids play sports together. City and County government is a key avenue for people like us to raise our concerns about all sorts of things like schools, access to clean energy, workforce development, or housing. When the legislature puts a “one size fits all” mold on the entire state, unique local needs and values are ignored.

    Anything that takes away power from local democracy and gives more power to the already wealthy and powerful corporate lobbyists in Saint Paul is bad for Minnesota. In Greater Minnesota we are entrepreneurial; we innovate; we get creative to solve our problems; we are civically engaged. We know our neighbors and we care deeply about one another. We should be trusted to make our own decisions.