Women’s Foundation of Minnesota

Recent Articles

Safe Harbors bill offers new hope to exploited young women

By Dwight Hobbes

Contributing Writer



In 2011, the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota (WFM) launched MN Girls Are Not For Sale, a five-year four-million dollar effort to end the sexual trafficking of girls and young women. The sad fact is, despite WFM’s staunch commitment to this crucial cause, girls and young women are still for sale. Until concrete measures are resolutely brought to bear, this insidious, illicit market thrives with wretched, far-reaching, life-destroying consequence. The Department of Justice identifies Minneapolis-St. Paul as a major child sex-trafficking center, one of the nation’s 15 largest. Continue Reading →

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Safe Harbor bill protects youth from being victimized twice

No Wrong Door gives sexually exploited children support, not punishment



News Analysis

By Dwight Hobbes

Contributing Writer


Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton, signed the Safe Harbor for Sexually Exploited Youth Act into law in 2011; it will take effect in 2014. This bill officially identifies and treats trafficked children and adolescents as crime victims, not criminals. Legislation to amend the bill, utilizing the “No Wrong Door” model, is now before lawmakers to put teeth in the original edict. The Safe Harbor for Sexually Exploited Youth Act, according to a press release issued by the Minnesota Human Trafficking Task Force, the Family Partnership, and the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota, “charged the state departments of Public Safety, Human Services and Health with the task of convening diverse experts, including law enforcement personnel, prosecutors, public defenders, service providers, advocates, survivors of sex trafficking and others to create a comprehensive prevention and intervention model to successfully implement the Safe Harbor Act.” After a year and a half of convening, diverse experts put No Wrong Door before the legislature this past January. There are, in all of Minnesota, only four beds to shelter sexually trafficked girls and none for sexually trafficked boys — a tragic reality No Wrong Door is being advanced to address. Continue Reading →

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Foundation awards grants to teen pregnancy prevention programs

The Ripley Memorial Foundation, a donor-advised fund of the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota, has awarded $59,500 in grants to nine organizations. The grant period is January 1 — December 31, 2012. The grantees are:
Centro ($7,000): To pilot a new Latino youth leadership and service-learning curriculum to reduce the likelihood of pregnancy among low-income Latino teens in Minneapolis. Employment Action Center ($8,000): To support Bright Futures, a comprehensive school- and community-based program for pregnant and parenting teen mothers. Face to Face ($4,500): To support ”B Free,” a program that provides a year’s worth of birth control to approximately 55 uninsured adolescent clients at high risk for teen pregnancy. Continue Reading →

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