Democrat-Controlled Minnesota House Passes Bill to Allow Child Sex Offenders, Murderers to Work in DHS Programs

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The Minnesota House passed a bill Monday in a vote along party lines that would allow residents convicted of a number of felonies to work in programs overseen by the Department of Human Services.

The bill, House File 2265, was authored by Rep. Dave Pinto (DFL-St. Paul) and passed out of the House in a 73-54 vote.

Pinto’s bill would require the DHS to consider granting a “set aside or variance” for “an individual who was disqualified for a crime or conduct listed under section 245C.15, subdivision 1” and if more than 20 years have passed since the individual was either sentenced or committed the crime.

The bill would apply to positions that require a DHS background check, such as Personal Care Attendants (PCAs), services for Minnesotans with disabilities, and Non-Emergency Medical Transportation drivers.

Crimes listed under section 245C.15, subdivision 1, include:

  • Felony-level stalking
  • Drive-by shooting
  • Malicious punishment of a child
  • Solicitation of children to engage in sexual conduct
  • Murder of an unborn child in the first degree
  • Kidnapping
  • Domestic assault by strangulation
  • Child abuse or neglect
  • Spousal abuse
  • Domestic assault
  • Murder in the first, second, and third degree

In a press release, Deputy Minority Leader Anne Neu (R-North Branch) noted that these crimes “would fall under the crimes that must be considered for a set-aside or variance.”

“This bill opens the door to allowing literal murderers and child sex offenders to work alongside Minnesota’s most vulnerable citizens with no guarantees or safeguards that they have been rehabilitated and ready to rejoin the workforce,” she said, though she does point out that there are some crimes that are “exempted in the bill,” such as criminal sexual conduct.

“Too often this session, Democrats have been focused on restorative justice by any means necessary, even if it puts Minnesotans at risk,” Neu added.

The bill will now head to the Senate for consideration, where it is sponsored by State Sen. Richard Cohen (DFL-St. Paul).

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Anthony Gockowski is managing editor of Battleground State News, The Ohio Star, and The Minnesota Sun. Follow Anthony on Twitter. Email tips to
Photo “Minnesota Capitol House Chambers” by Chris Gaukel. CC BY-SA 2.0.







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9 Thoughts to “Democrat-Controlled Minnesota House Passes Bill to Allow Child Sex Offenders, Murderers to Work in DHS Programs”

  1. Annie Kate

    What is happening in Minnesota??? Has the whole state gone crazy?? This is one of the worst ideas I have ever heard!!

  2. I believe that we all understand that the government does only one thing well and recently not even that. . . The truth is that when there is an opportunity for criminal behavior by those who have in the past demonstrated that they are capable of seriously horrible behavior then there is no way that someone with an illness like this should be working in such a sensitive field as human services. When the government is involved in getting something done it usually does not do a good job of it. When you have matches lying around someone that sets fires. You will have a fire eventually that is what is wrong here and I think most people realize that too.

  3. Jill

    Well looks like a lot of winning lawsuits against the Democrats!

  4. Fran B.

    PCA…what does a PCA do? They are in constant contact with vulnerable patients and they are able to access a lot of personal information and medications.

  5. Jeremy

    This is not actually true…it helps those who have done their time, rehabilitated themselves and are trying to move on for a stupid thing they did when they were young. Example, we have a guy who committed a crime 47 years ago, when he was 18 and is now not allowed to work for our company even though he has done everything right, paid his time and trying to move on and better his life for him and his family. You make it sound like they are allowing rapists/murderers to drive people around, which is not true. Don’t you believe people deserve second chances who have done time for the wrong they once did? How are they to move on with their lives? Many people have done stupid things when they were young.

    1. Sheena

      I believe in 2nd chances as much as anyone… though I draw the line at allowing a convicted pedophile care for my disabled child…. I would not allow a person convicted of abuse and neglect to care for my elderly mother who has alzheimers. There are some things that do not change…
      One is your sexual preference the other is violent tendencies brought on by mounting stress and frustration.
      Old habits die hard.
      I sure hope the clients are being warned.

    2. I’m all for second chances , but it doesn’t mean that the second chance should be at the risk of harm to some of our most vulnerable citizens. These people are relying on us to protect them from potentially dangerous people in situations where they are completely dependent on the individual that is trusted with their care . How would you feel if your child Or elderly parent was in this situation? Give the rehabilitated person a chance , but don’t take chances with someone else’s life .

    3. Lola Yost

      Wow, did you not read the list? I’m all for giving anyone a second chance most of the time, especially if they have paid their debt to society. However, you don’t take an alcoholic and hire them to watch the liquor inventory just to prove you trust them. There are plenty of other jobs they are likely able to do, so let’s just exercise a little common sense, shall we? Or, maybe we should let them watch YOUR kids, ay??

  6. Waleed Sonbol

    This is a load of bullshit. First, Tennessee passed a law which allowed Uber/Lyft to transport people around, and agreed with lobbyist from those companies that finger print background checks are not necessary. Why? How many sexual assaults and rapes must happen, or your ladies get kidnapped and killed by fake Uber/Lyft drivers, for the Tennessee Star to demand more? None? All in the name of deregulation?

    The bill was to say that anyone who committed a crime 20 years ago would be allowed to have a variance considered. Meaning it would not be an automatic disqualification. But the Department of Human Services would then look at the person, look at their record, and see whether or not a variance should be allowed.

    Minority Leader Anne Neu knows this. And if she doesn’t know this, she should not be allowed to speak on behalf of something that she does not understand.