SAINT PAUL, Minn. – This past weekend, the Minnesota House People of Color and Indigenous (POCI) Caucus elected Rep. Esther Agbaje (DFL – Minneapolis) and Rep. Cedrick Frazier (DFL – New Hope) to serve as chairs for the upcoming legislative session. Rep-elect Alicia Kozlowski (DFL – Duluth) was elected to serve as vice chair. The POCI Caucus issued the following statements:
“We’re all engaged and inspired by the opportunity a trifecta presents. As we embark upon the critical work ahead, we’re fully committed to ensuring the priorities of historically excluded communities remain at the forefront. Despite our projected massive budget surplus, stark, unacceptable inequities remain throughout our state including in education, public safety, housing, health care, and economic opportunity,” said Co-Chair Frazier. “Black, Indigenous, and Minnesotans of color are counting on us to seize this moment and deliver a transformative agenda. Representation matters. We look forward to working together in 2023 to advance a bold agenda, ensuring all Minnesotans succeed and prosper no matter where they live or what they look like."
Formed in 2017, the POCI Caucus focuses on priorities to strengthen equity and inclusion in Minnesota while dismantling racism.
"I'm honored to have the chance to lead the POCI Caucus again. I look forward to working with this dynamic and dedicated team of legislators to support BIPOC Minnesotans by implementing equity-focused legislation to better the lives of Minnesotans," said Co-Chair Agbaje.
At a total of twenty, the November election resulted in a record number of legislators joining the caucus representing urban, suburban, and Greater Minnesota.
"I'm proud to join forces with the POCI Caucus as vice chair to continue our shared fight for collective sovereignty and liberation across race, place, gender, and ability in every corner of Minnesota,” said Vice Chair Kozlowski. “Together, we're ready to co-create lasting policy solutions and investments that are rooted in our greatest assets and brilliance to protect, heal, and strengthen our communities.”
In addition to the co-chairs and vice chair, the POCI Caucus includes: Reps. Jamie Becker-Finn (40B), Ethan Cha (47B), Mary Frances Clardy (53A), Aisha Gomez (62A), Hodan Hassan (62B), Kaohly Her (64A), Athena Hollins (66B), Samakab Hussein (65A), Heather Keeler (4A), Fue Lee (59A), Liz Lee (67A), Maria Isa Pérez-Hedges (65B), Mohamud Noor (60B), Ruth Richardson (52B), Samantha Sencer-Mura (63A), Samantha Vang (38B), and Jay Xiong (67B).