Group gives Legislature a 'D' for racial equityby Jessica Mador, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — A group that advocates for racial justice has given the Minnesota Legislature a grade of "D" for its efforts to improve racial equity in 2011.
The Organizing Apprenticeship Project released its 6th annual Legislative Report Card on Racial Equity, awarding A's to nearly three-dozen Senate and House lawmakers, and F's to more than a dozen. The Legislature also earned an F for budget equity.
Organizer Vina Kay says more needs to be done to increase equality in Minnesota.
"Minnesota has some of the highest disparities in the country in education," Kay said. "Our unemployment gap for African Americans is the highest in the country — 22 percent unemployment rate for African Americans, which is three times the rate for whites."
The report card gave Gov. Mark Dayton a B-minus. The Organizing Apprenticeship Project held a rally at the capitol Thursday to highlight their report's findings.
"There are these huge disparities at the very same time that we are seeing and increase in populations of color in Minnesota," Kay said. "So something isn't working right in the structures that support our communities. They are not serving everybody well."