MSSA 2020 Policy Priorities

Statewide Common Telepresence Platform: 

Minnesota's aging population and scarce workforce has caused pressure on all industries, including health and human services, to improve productivity. Innovation is the main source of productivity improvement. Thriving industries in the United States are transforming digitally, focusing on improving customer experiences, innovating industry business and platform models, and driving costs down by leveraging scale and cloud opportunities. The Minnesota community innovation model has demonstrated the value of adapting these strategies for person-centered innovation using Internet telepresence to incentivize local and regional collaborative initiatives in health and human services and related education and correctional services.

Our proposal:

Leverage the State of Minnesota’s telepresence network to connect providers of critical services, especially in the areas of mental health and substance use disorders, with individuals who are not currently able to receive adequate services—possibly due to geographic location, lack of transportation providers, or due to limitations such as incarceration.

Volunteer Driver Insurance Rates: HF 2377

Currently, insurance companies are enrolling volunteer drivers into rideshare programs, like Uber and Lyft, which has greatly increased their insurance rates. This has resulted in a dramatic decrease in volunteer drivers, especially in the rural areas.

Our proposal:

Clarify that volunteer drivers receiving funding from the public transit participation program are not for hire, allowing volunteer drivers to receive the correct insurance at an affordable cost, ensuring that the amount of volunteer drivers would increase or at least maintain current levels.

MSSA Supported Policy Proposals

  • Disparities in Child Welfare: MSSA supports efforts to increase the well-being of families from communities of color and to better serve children in the child welfare system.
  • Mental Health Treatment for Veterans: All veterans, regardless of discharge status, should have access to affordable and appropriate mental health treatment when needed.
  • Avoiding Unnecessary GuardianshipMSSA supports policy, best practices, and possibly legislation to help individuals, families, and professionals have the information, encouragement, and resources they need to utilize Supported Decision Making (SDM) as an alternative to guardianship.

MSSA Monitored Policy Proposals

  • Child Maltreatment Appeals: Allow interested parties other than offenders to appeal a child maltreatment determination and define what professionals make up a child maltreatment review panel.
  • Childcare Assistance Program Extension: Allow a transition period to gradually decrease CCAP allocations until parents/guardians can afford the weekly cost of childcare.
  • After-hours Childcare: Recruit and create incentives for child care providers to provide after-hours childcare for those using CCAP.