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Gender equity, violence bills get debate amid Minnesota budget battle

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Several initiatives to promote gender equity and reduce gender-based violence are in play amid the final negotiations in Minnesota's legislative session.

Posted: May 10, 2019 1:29 PM

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Several initiatives to promote gender equity and reduce gender-based violence are in play amid the final negotiations in Minnesota's legislative session.

They range from legislation aimed at a potential overhaul of the state's sexual assault laws to making it easier to sue for sexual harassment. The House has votes to address the plight of missing and murdered indigenous women, while a bill that would make it a crime to grope someone's buttocks through their clothing is moving closer to a Senate floor vote.

The Democratic-controlled House has passed several gender bills amid the heightened awareness of the #MeToo era. Fewer have advanced in the Republican-controlled Senate. But most of the issues have landed in a conference committee that is resolving differences between the two chambers' main public safety budget bills.

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