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Income and Work

Minnesota has one of the highest rates of labor force participation in the country, but that doesn’t mean that all Minnesotans are able to make ends meet. We research economic trends to understand who’s faring well in today’s economy, and who is left behind. We advocate for economic policies, particularly those that improve wages and job quality standards, so that more Minnesotans can thrive.

Research

February 2021

COVID-induced recession is most unequal on record

While no income group or community has been untouched by the coronavirus, the economic recession it has triggered may be the most unequal in modern history. Underlying economic and racial disparities have been heightened, and are reflected in Americans having increasingly divergent experiences.

August 2020

New data show COVID is amplifying hardships for low-income people and folks of color

New data from the Census Bureau illustrates the staggering increase in hardship as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and burgeoning economic recession. And the burden falls particularly on people of color, who benefitted the least from the economic boom times and today can least absorb the blow.

August 2020

Recession responses that do not center Minnesotans of color likely to widen racial disparities

Policy responses to the Great Recession were insufficient in magnitude and length to mitigate racial disparities, and in fact some disparities were made worse. Policymakers must prioritize racial equity in their responses to the current economic downturn and COVID pandemic, to ensure all our communities, whether Black, Brown, or white, can thrive and are resilient in weathering these crises.

June 2020

State of Working Minnesota: Low-income people and people of color working hard but struggle to thrive

Minnesotans believe that hard work should pay off, that people who work full time should be able to support their families, and that everyone should have the opportunity to succeed. But slow wage growth and growing income inequality contradicts some of our country’s most deeply held values.

Income and Work Blog Posts

July 20, 2021

A brief rundown on the expanded Child Tax Credit

Here we break down some basic information as to who is eligible for the Child Tax Credit, how much families will receive, and how families can receive their credits.

June 29, 2021

Improved UI benefits needed for a safe, equitable recovery

Unemployment insurance (UI) benefits have been a financial lifeline for many workers and their families who lost jobs...

May 14, 2021

Driver’s licenses for all is important for building an equitable recovery

Expanding access to driver’s licenses regardless of immigration status would advance the economic success of our state....

April 22, 2021

Expanding paid leave to more workers would build an equitable recovery

As we continue to live through a global pandemic and perhaps the most unequal recession in modern history, we have...

Highlighted Research

workers

State of Working Minnesota: Barriers Keep Many from Making Ends Meet

Despite Minnesota's economic recovery from the Great Recession, many Minnesotans have not seen the wage growth we would expect nearly a decade later. And many people still face barriers to finding good jobs and supporting themselves and their families, according to analysis from the Economic Policy Institute. Our State of Working Minnesota report digs deeper into the data.

Issues