News from DHS for February 2020

Minnesota Department of Human Services logo


February 2020

News from DHS archive

In this issue:

DHS in the community

A diverse group of women seated around a conference table

Mothers say MFIP helps them get back on their feet. Families working toward self-sufficiency and stability through the Minnesota Family Investment Program are beginning to see the first cash assistance increase in more than 30 years, thanks to legislation signed by Governor Tim Walz in 2019.

Commissioner Jodi Harpstead (second from left, below) and DHS MFIP Program Manager Pamela McCauley (not pictured) recently visited HIRED's office on the east side of St. Paul to meet with parents accessing MFIP with help from employment services counselors. The mothers they heard from were resilient, using MFIP to get back on their feet despite having to navigate complex systems while facing challenging circumstances. Some said they have gone back to school, started businesses of their own or taken jobs that allow them to pay it forward to their communities.

Commissioner Harpstead meeting with people around a conference room table.

Council on an Age-Friendly Minnesota holds first meeting. In December, Governor Tim Walz issued an executive order establishing a Council on an Age-Friendly Minnesota. On Feb. 26 DHS Commissioner Jodi Harpstead and Lt. Governor Peggy Flanagan kicked off the first official meeting at the AARP Office in St. Paul.

Kicking the habit finds a receptive audience in treatment

A pilot study conducted by the Minnesota Department of Human Services has demonstrated the value of including nicotine treatment as part of treatment for substance use disorders. Not only can it reduce nicotine dependence, it can improve overall outcomes for people in substance use disorder treatment.

Read more in the department’s news release.

Submit nominations by Feb. 28 for Outstanding Refugee Awards

The positive contributions of people with refugee status to Minnesota are numerous, and the Minnesota Department of Human Services wants to celebrate them. The department is therefore inviting people to nominate individuals who came to the United States with refugee status for the 2020 Outstanding Refugee Awards. Nomination forms and award criteria can be found on the DHS website. Nominations are due by Friday,
Feb. 28. The department will honor award recipients in a ceremony this June.

newspaper beside a coffee cup

In the news

Links to some news articles about DHS during February:

In social media

13 people scooping up a shovel full of dirt

Posted Feb. 5 on the DHS Facebook page: Construction on a new psychiatric hospital in Willmar that will provide specialized treatment to children and teens with severe mental illness and behavior disorders has come a long way! Watch this video to see the progress on the new Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health Hospital, opening this summer.

To see more posts like this and for timely updates on DHS news and events, follow DHS on Twitter and Facebook.

Fact sheets updated in February

Fact sheets summarizing human services proposals for the 2020 legislative session are now available on the DHS website. The fact sheets highlight human services proposals in Governor Tim Walz’s Local Jobs and Projects Plan.

For accessible formats of this publication or assistance with additional equal access to human services, write to, call 651-431-2911, or use your preferred relay service.