New Minnesota Laws Going Into Effect July 1st
they range from the opioid epidemic to spousal rape law changes and the creation of a missing and murdered indigenous women task force
MINNESOTA — Along with a $48 billion budget, a new set of laws will take effect in Minnesota on July 1st.
Twenty–one million dollars a year.
That’s how much drug manufacturers will be required to pay the state starting next Monday.
“There isn’t a stream of funding for prevention efforts in general, opioids in particular,” said Rory Beil, with Clay County Public Health.
Beil says providing that funding for grants that focus on prevention strategies is vital when just last year, there were 422 opioid related deaths in Minnesota.
Clay County is one of the many across the state receiving a portion of the money to help children who have been removed from their homes because one of their parents are addicted to opioids.
The new law aimed at fixing the opioid epidemic will also make sure prescribers receive more training giving out the drug and inform patients how addictive they can be.
“The jury’s out to some degree but some things are obvious. That how we prescribe painkillers and education that patients get are important things. There are a number of things that the experts on this have identified that are difference makers and this legislation is in place to help make some of those things possible,” Beil said.
While the state is working to resolve one epidemic with the new law, they’re also repealing another.
It prevented prosecutors from filing sexual assault charges against people accused of raping their spouses.
“I believe that we’re looking at changing beliefs and that’s a good thing. We need to have a belief system shifting to sexual abuse is not okay regardless of whether you’re married or in an intimate partner relationship, whether it’s unmarried or whatever the relationship is, sexual abuse without consent is not ok,” said Myla Korbel, program director at the Rape and Abuse Crisis Center.
The spousal rape bill was passed unanimously by both the House and Senate.
Another change includes $150,000 in the state budget to create a missing and murdered indigenous women task force. The lead author on the task force has already reached out to North Dakota State Representative Ruth Buffalo of Fargo, to work on creating solutions across the country.
“It’s important that we work across state lines and across regions to tackle the issue of missing and murdered indigenous people because no one is immune to this,” said North Dakota State Rep. Ruth Buffalo of Fargo.
Buffalo is just one of the founders of the Fargo–Moorhead Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women Task Force.
With the creation of several task forces popping up across the country, she’s hoping it’ll help to finally resolve what she says is a public health crisis.
“It’s a symptom of a larger problem and so how do we get to the route cause of this issue because everybody deserves to feel safe in their communities,” Buffalo said.
Wage theft will also become a crime starting next Monday.
Also, lists showing which party people voted for in presidential primaries will no longer be public.