Bloomington City Council
Jenna Carter: Offers public health perspective
Adapted from the Minneapolis Labor Review
October 21, 2023
By Steve Share, Minneapolis Labor Review editor
BLOOMINGTON — “A public health lens is something valuable I bring to the council,” says Jenna Carter. “What does it mean to be a healthy community where people can thrive and have access to opportunity?”
Jenna Carter is running for re-election for a second term as an At Large member of the Bloomington city council. As in her first run, she carries the endorsement of the Minneapolis Regional Labor Federation, AFL-CIO.
Carter’s other labor endorsements include: AFSCME Council 5, IBEW Local 292, LiUNA Minnesota & North Dakota, North Central States Regional Council of Carpenters, UNITE HERE Local 17.
||Jenna Carter: ‘What does it mean to be a healthy community where people can thrive and have access to opportunity?’
Carter moved to the Twin Cities years ago to earn a Masters of Public Health from the University of Minnesota. “For 15 years, I have worked within and across sectors to advance community health and equity with a focus on policy and systems change,” she says.
Just weeks after joining the city council in 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic arrived. “As I think about being on the council during that time, it was valuable to have my perspective,” she says. In February 2020, she recalls asking her city council colleagues, “what are we doing to prepare?”
“One of the things I pushed hard for was making sure we had [informational] materials in other languages,” she says.
Carter says she’s proud of the work to enact Bloomington’s earned sick and safe time policy. “When I ran in 2019, it was a question. When the pandemic arrived, it highlighted the absolute necessity for people to be able to stay home when they’re sick. I pushed hard to make sure we got that policy moving forward.”
Racial equity issues are another focus for Carter. In the aftermath of the George Floyd murder, she led in seeing Bloomington declare racism to be a public health crisis. The city has since moved to develop a racial equity business plan involving every department.
“I’m really grateful for the support of the labor unions and appreciate the involvement of members and their families,” Carter says.