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Minnesota Develops Prenatal to Three Policy Agenda to Promote Equity

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Minnesota’s Prenatal to Three (PN-3) Coalition represents a diverse base of local, regional and statewide early childhood stakeholders and coalitions. By focusing on children facing racial, geographic and economic inequities, the coalition believes all children in Minnesota will be born healthy and able to thrive within their families and communities.

Minnesota’s PN-3 Coalition serves two main purposes. First, PN-3 raises awareness among policy and decision-makers about the importance of a child’s early years and ensures the youngest children are both meeting developmental benchmarks and are ready for kindergarten and beyond. Second, PN-3 increases smart investments in Minnesota’s young children and their families.

In 2016, Minnesota first released “Prenatal to Age 3: A Comprehensive, Racially-Equitable Policy Plan for Universal Healthy Child Development” outlining specific actions the state could take to promote social, economic, health, and educational equity for all children. To identify priorities, the authors of “Prenatal to Age 3: A Comprehensive, Racially-Equitable Policy Plan for Universal Healthy Child Development” held listening sessions across the state where participants discussed their communities’ strengths, barriers that must be removed to support those strengths, and new opportunities that would ensure all children prosper. Four core recommendations were formed from the themes that emerged:

  1. Boost and sustain multigenerational family and community support and networks – both formal and informal.
  2. Invest in family and community economic development and security.
  3. Establish a flexible funding stream for community-led solutions tied to results.
  4. Continue to advance prenatal to age 3 holistic service and funding strategies, coordinated across systems and agencies.

In 2020, the Coalition has taken those same values and embedded them into their latest policy goals. The PN-3 Coalition recognizes that Minnesota’s future prosperity depends on the well-being of every family, every infant, and every young child in the state. The Coalition has targeted policy opportunities aimed at those who experience racial, economic, and geographic disparities in order to ensure that the first 1,000 days of life include quality experiences for all infants, toddlers, and their families.

In order to give infants, toddlers, and families the best start, the PN-3 Coalition has developed their 2020 policy platform centered around promoting access to:

  • Trauma-informed, culturally responsive prenatal, primary, speciality, mental, and dental health care for families with young children.
  • Paid Family Leave to support family health and economic stability
  • High quality child care by increasing child care subsidies to the 75th percentile of market rates and by increasing subsidies for higher quality early learning opportunities.
  • Community-led and supportive solutions by and for communities of color
  • A quality diverse, supported and well compensated early care and education workforce. For example, support Family, Friend, and Neighbor (FFN) child care by providing training to caregivers and quality learning and development opportunities for children cared for by FFN caregivers.

Updated August 2020.


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