At Goodwill-Easter Seals Minnesota, our advocacy and public policy work is an integral piece of helping the organization fulfill its mission of eliminating barriers to employment and independence, particularly at a systems change level. To that end, we must prioritize our advocacy and policy efforts for the greatest impact. As an organization, we serve such a wide and diverse array of people that nearly all human service and workforce policies have some impact on program participants. We believe that a larger framework is needed to better define our annual priorities and provide focus for limited time and resources. We have identified the following key strategic areas as having the greatest importance for defining our advocacy and policy work. These goal areas will help to shape and define our specific advocacy and policy priorities for the coming years.
Goal #1: Help move individuals and families out of poverty and to economic self-reliance.
Minimum wage increase (federal and state)
Fatherhood policy and program funding (federal and state)
Workforce Investment Act (WIA) and Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) Reauthorization (federal)
Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) reauthorization (federal)
Prosperity for All campaign– reducing barriers to education and training (state)
Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits – Employment & Training (federal)
Goal #2: Reduce racial disparities especially as they relate to employment in Minnesota
Voting restoration (state)
Expansion of criminal records expungement (state)
Goal #3: Increase access to services and independence for individuals with disabilities.
Deanna Smiley Gulliford Director of Community Affairs 651-379-5940 Email Deanna
Green Line connects cities, employment
Goodwill-Easter Seals will begin offering employment assistance for citizens along the new Light Rail Green Line. Scheduled to open in June, the new rail line will connect St. Paul and Minneapolis.
New graduates benefit from your support
With the help of generous community supporters, two recent graduates of our Automotive Service Technician training have the tools they need to start their new careers.
Spouses find new skills, jobs
James and Bertha walked in the door of Goodwill-Easter Seals Minnesota seeking long-term stability in their lives. Their pasts were filled with criminal records, addiction, mental health issues, drugs and short-term thinking. But those rocky roads led them to each other, and to us. That's how our Employment Training & Education program welcomed the first-ever husband and wife team attending classes simultaneously.
On the road to health, employment and success
Patti had a rocky road to travel to get to where she is today. From a divorce, to homelessness, to an arrest, to addiction, to living on SSDI, she learned through our Work Incentives Connection that health and work with a disability was possible.