Revised: Minneapolis Connects, Marcy-Holmes job announcement added

Minneapolis Connects: News and information from Minneapolis Neighborhood and Community Relations

February, 2017


The 6th annual Community Connections Conference will take place on Saturday (April 1st) at the Minneapolis Convention Center. This year’s theme, “Your Voice, Your City, CommUnity,” emphasizes bringing people together to build power and unity across cultures and communities.

Attracting 500+ attendees each year, the conference is designed to foster collaboration amongst City, neighborhood organizations, and communities. This is accomplished through a strong program of influential speakers, robust conversations, interactive exhibits, and best-practices to impact policies and community-based issues. Attendees are treated to free lunch options accompanied by entertainment and a keynote speaker.

Conference registration is set to open the last week of February. Please check the Community Connections Conference website for future updates.

Neighborhoods 2020


The Neighborhood and Community Engagement Commission (NCEC) and Neighborhood and Community Relations (NCR) department will partner with neighborhood organizations to host four to six community conversations across the City on the future role of neighborhood organizations. These conversations will lead to recommendations to the City Council on the direction of future funding and programming for neighborhood organizations beyond 2020.

The purpose of the community conversations is to host respectful community conversations about the role of neighborhood organizations, leading to the development of recommendations for City Council in early 2018. The events will provide an opportunity for neighborhood organization members, residents and stakeholders to gather and talk about the future of their work through inclusive and representative conversations. NCR and NCEC and our partner neighborhood organizations will also reach out to cultural community organizations and City leaders to hear additional perspectives.

The NCEC Neighborhood 2020’s work group meets the third Monday of each month on first floor of Crown Roller Mill. Their agendas and minutes can be found here.

For more information regarding Neighborhoods 2020 please see this website and watch for updates, or contact NCR at 612-673-3737 or by email

Election Dos and Don’ts for Neighborhood and Community Organizations

With the City’s general election less than a year away, there have been questions about how neighborhood and community organizations can be involved in increasing voter registration, turnout and education.

Organizations can and do organize candidate forums, take positions on ballot initiatives, and work on voter registration drives and get-out-the-vote activities. Organizations should note, however, that partisan political activity is prohibited by the Internal Revenue Service for all 50l(c)(3) organizations. Similarly, contracts with the City state that organizations may not engage in political activity. 

 For more details, download a copy of NCR’s guide on Neighborhood Organizations and Elections. If you have specific questions, please contact NCR.

City holding listening sessions to discuss minimum wage

The City of Minneapolis is hosting several listening sessions in coming weeks to gather feedback on a potential minimum wage policy for employers in the City of Minneapolis.

The City Council has directed City staff to present minimum wage policy recommendations mid-year after doing additional research and community engagement on the topic. The listening sessions will be an opportunity for community stakeholders to share viewpoints on how a change in the minimum wage would impact them.

Details will be posted at the City’s minimum wage webpage so check there to verify dates and times as additional listening sessions and details are confirmed.

Find upcoming meetings and more information here.

The community engagement plan follows a presentation to the City Council’s Committee of the Whole in October 2016 by a research team presenting highlights of a study analyzing the relative impact of a local minimum wage increase in the City of Minneapolis and regionally in Hennepin County and Ramsey County. The study, led by the University of Minnesota’s Roy Wilkins Center for Human Relations and Justice, examined the impact of increasing the wage to $12 and $15 per hour phased in over five years.

City leaders respond to White House orders on immigration

Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges, City Council President Barbara Johnson and City Council Vice President Elizabeth Glidden issued the following joint statement regarding President Donald Trump’s executive orders on immigration policy: 

“Minneapolis is a city that welcomes everyone: immigrants, refugees, Native people, LGBT people, people with disabilities, and people of all races, genders, religions and ethnicities. Minneapolis is also a city that works hard to keep everyone safe in every community and every neighborhood.

“In Minneapolis, one of the common-sense ways that we welcome all communities and work to keep them safe is by separating local police work from that of federal immigration authorities. This is how we encourage anyone who has been the victim of or witness to a crime to come forward, which keeps everyone in every neighborhood safer. We will continue to aggressively defend this common-sense practice to ensure that Minneapolis remains safe and welcoming for everyone.”

City passes resolution supporting resettlement of Syrian refugees

The City of Minneapolis approved a resolution supporting the resettlement of Syrian refugees in Minneapolis and calling on other Minnesota communities to support a national effort to resettle the country’s most vulnerable refugees.

The resolution notes that “hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees are making life and death decisions to flee Syria and neighboring countries because they are unable to access shelter, health care, education or protection, and neighboring countries have closed their borders to new arrivals.”

Turkey is now hosting almost 3 million Syrian refugees and neighboring countries another 2 million. Since January 2015, 7,000 refugees have died trying to cross the Mediterranean into Europe, and two children die every day in the crossing, the resolution states.

More than 14,000 Syrian refugees have resettled in the United States since the beginning of the conflict in 2011. The Twin Cities is a leader in welcoming refugees and has resettled more than 12,500 refugees from 40 countries, including Syria, since 2011.

EMS Pathways Academy Student Internship Program


The EMS Pathways Academy Student Internship Program is helping the Minneapolis Fire Department and Hennepin EMS workforce to better reflect the community they serve. The first class of graduates included 91% people of color and was over 50% female. Obtaining your Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) certification opens the door to many career paths. This is a rapidly expanding field and as more jobs for EMTs are created, it is necessary to fill these positions with qualified candidates that reflect the multilingual and culturally diverse communities we serve. Graduates of this program have been successfully hired as Minneapolis Firefighters, dispatchers with Hennepin EMS and some are continuing their training to become Paramedics.

What: 11-13 week EMT training and certification course.

Who: Applicants must have a high school diploma or GED, be authorized to work in the United States, and will be required to pass a physical exam.

When: Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. beginning May 1, 2017.

Cost: There is no cost to apply. Participants are paid $15 hourly.

To learn more go to:

Hotline for help preventing diabetes

Prediabetics can sign up now for classes starting in February

People at risk for Type 2 diabetes can call a new hotline to find out if they’re at risk for getting diabetes. Anyone can call 1-888-643-2584 to get a quick screening over the phone and help signing up for a diabetes prevention class in their language and in their area.

Diabetes Prevention Program classes start in February in English, Spanish, Somali and Oromo. The classes are also available online in English. The Diabetes Prevention Connection provides a one-stop source of reliable and up-to-date information on in-person classes in Minneapolis and an online option.

The Minnesota Department of Health estimates that one out of three Minnesotans have prediabetes, but most of them don’t know it. People with prediabetes have a blood sugar level higher than normal but not high enough to be considered diabetes. Type 2 diabetes can lead to stroke, heart disease, blindness, amputations and other serious conditions.

Small changes can make a big difference. People with prediabetes who lose 5 to 7 percent of their body weight (around 15 pounds for a 200-pound person) through healthy eating and physical activity can cut their chances of developing Type 2 diabetes in half.

Under the guidance of a trained coach over 16 weeks, participants learn about healthy eating, physical activity, managing stress, staying motivated and solving problems that can get in the way of making healthy changes.

Classes are available at clinics, churches, YMCAs and other organizations in the city. The Minneapolis Health Department also offers an online version of the class. The online option offers flexibility while maintaining essential parts of the program such as a live coach and support from other participants.

Who should call?

All adults who are overweight or obese and have one or more of these risk factors are at a higher risk of prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes:

  • Being 45 or older.
  • Having a family background that is African-American, American Indian, Asian-American, Latino or Pacific Islander.
  • Having a birth parent, brother or sister with diabetes.
  • Having had gestational diabetes while pregnant.
  • Having delivered a baby that weighed 9 pounds or more.
  • Having high blood pressure.
  • Not being physically active.

Health care providers can use the hotline to refer their prediabetic patients to services.

The Minneapolis Health Department and the Minnesota Department of Health sponsor the hotline and many of the Diabetes Prevention Programs with funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

For more information about the Diabetes Prevention Program, people can call the Diabetes Prevention Connection at 1-888-643-2584 or go to

Urban Scholars applications open through Feb. 18

The City of Minneapolis is once again offering its leadership development summer internship program for undergraduate and graduate students. Now in its sixth year, the Urban Scholars program aims to provide college students from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds with resume-building professional work experiences. College students interested in applying for the summer internship program should apply online at by Saturday, Feb. 18. The 12-week program is a full-time paid internship experience that runs from May 22 to Aug. 11.

Interns will work in key areas of different City departments, including the Mayor’s Office and City Council offices, and with the Metropolitan Council, Hennepin County, Minneapolis Public Schools, the State of Minnesota, Greater Twin Cities United Way, and the Minneapolis Park Board. Scholars also participate in the Urban Scholars Leadership Institute for essential leadership and communications skills and focus on building networks, skills and opportunities. In the long run, the City and partners hope to develop young talent so the students can begin careers in the public sector and someday be the next generation of public service leaders.

Last year, 73 Urban Scholars interns were chosen from more than 500 applicants.

The Urban Scholars leadership development summer internship program is one component of the Equity Division of the Minneapolis Department of Civil Rights. Visit here for more information.

Deadline Feb. 10 for youths to apply for STEP-UP summer employment program


The City of Minneapolis youth employment program STEP-UP is accepting applications for 2017 summer internship placements. Eligible Minneapolis residents ages 14-21 who are interested in participating in the 2017 STEP-UP class have until Feb. 10 to complete an application online.

STEP-UP is one of the country’s premiere youth employment programs, serving Minneapolis youths who face some of the greatest barriers to employment. This includes youths from disadvantaged economic backgrounds, youths of color, youths from recent immigrant families, and youths with disabilities. In addition to summer jobs with more than 230 top Twin Cities companies, nonprofits and public agencies, STEP-UP offers work readiness training, advanced-level internships and industry-specific career opportunities that help interns integrate their career exposure with post-secondary education and career planning.

Before being placed in their internships, participants have work readiness training certified by the Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce that prepares them for a professional work environment. Returning interns receive advanced training that helps them deepen their professional skills. Throughout their internships, they gain valuable on-the job skills, make strong professional connections, and become exposed to careers they may have not otherwise accessed without STEP-UP.

Since the program was launched, it has provided more than 24,000 internship opportunities. In 2016, STEP-UP placed more than 1,600 Minneapolis youths in jobs with more than 220 businesses, public agencies and nonprofits. Youths represented in the 2016 class were 88 percent youths of color, 48 percent youths from recent immigrant families, and 15 percent youths with disabilities or other significant barriers to employment. Representing 44 different languages from around the world, 36 percent spoke fluently in languages besides English.

Businesses, public agencies and nonprofits interested in employing interns in 2017 can find information on the City of Minneapolis STEP-UP website.

STEP-UP is a City of Minneapolis program in partnership with AchieveMpls. Other partners include Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board, and Project for Pride in Living.

To learn more about STEP-UP or apply online, visit the City of Minneapolis website. You can also follow STEP-UP on Twitter @STEPUPMpls or like it on Facebook.

Marcy-Holmes Neighborhood Association seeks Executive Director


The Marcy-Holmes Neighborhood Association is searching for an Executive Director to partner with the neighborhood board of directors to improve and enhance the quality of residential life.  The association has budgeted up to 35 hours per week at a salary competitive with other neighborhood associations. Applications are due by February 15, 2017.

Windom Community Council seeks Administrative Coordinator, Community Outreach Organizer


The Windom Community Council (WCC) seeks an Administrative Coordinator and a Community Outreach Organizer.

  • The Administrative Coordinator will manage WCC administrative services with the Executive Committee. This is a contract position requiring a 10-15 hour/week time commitment.
  • The Community Organizer will work with the board to develop and execute a robust community engagement process. This is a contract position requiring a 10-20 hour/week time commitment.

Qualifications and introductory emails are due to by March 3, 2017.

Tangletown Neighborhood Association seeks Artists


The Tangletown Neighborhood Association (TNA) is seeking Minneapolis artists to submit designs for utility box wraps in the Tangletown neighborhood in south Minneapolis. The program is open to professional artists living or working in the Tangletown neighborhood or the City of Minneapolis. TNA will also consider art students (or teams of arts students) living in or attending school in the Tangletown neighborhood, provided their arts teacher will mentor the student(s) through the process. Selected artists will be paid a small honorarium.

Please review the full description of the project and submission requirements. Applications are due by February 28, 2017.

The City of Minneapolis invites and encourages participation by every resident to each program, service and event within our city. Should you require an accommodation in order for you to fully participate, or should you require this document in an alternative format, please let us know by contacting 612-673-3737.

Upcoming Events

February is African-American History Month.


2/1: Linden Hills Shredded Tire Info Session

2/3: Kenny Fire on Ice Skating Party

2/4: Windom Reads

2/4: Prospect Park Fire & Ice Festival

2/6: Fulton Winter Networking/Happy Hour Event

2/7: Minimum Wage Listening Session: Native American Community

2/9: Kingfield Empty Bowls

2/10: Armatage Fire & Ice

2/12: Lake of the Isles Neighborhood Ice Skating Party

2/14: Minimum Wage Listening Session: Downtown Council and NE Chamber of Commerce

2/15: Minimum Wage Listening Session: African American Community

2/16: Black History Month

2/17: Loring Park Winter Fest

2/18: Fix-It Tech Event

2/19: Givens Collection Open House

2/21: Minimum Wage Listening Session: general public

2/21: Origins of Black Civil Rights in Minnesota

2/23: Minimum Wage Listening Session: general public

2/24: NABA Premiere 2: Spoken Word & Movie Nite! - A Black History Month Celebration

2/24: Concert: This Is Why We Dream

2/24-2/25: Minneapolis Urban League Pancake Bar in celebration Black History Month

Neighborhood and Community Relations Department

Director, David Rubedor 
Crown Roller Mill, Room 425
105 5th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55401
(612) 673-3737