The Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) is implementing a new policy that would delete emails over a year old, preventing Patriots in Minnesota from requesting the data and learning what the department has done with our tax money. This move is one of the most anti-transparency actions taken in our state in recent memory. If we cannot request our tax-funded documents and emails, corruption will be covered up and all hope may be lost.
The American model of government is designed Constitutionally to recognize our God-given Rights, treat us fairly in the eyes of the law, and allow citizens to have transparency by requesting data and government documents. Unfortunately, our government has strayed so far from our founding principles that we are fundamentally unrecognizable. Corruption does not often find the light of day unless it is exposed, meaning that politicians and bureaucrats are not held accountable without transparency measures to inform We the People. We live in an information war where propaganda is everywhere and the truth is hidden.
In our state, citizens can file a Data Practices Request from whatever agency or department they want information for, if you face trouble, contact the Data Practices Office for direction. The DHS says that emails containing official government documents will not be deleted, if we want to believe them. A spokesman for the DHS even suggested that they are hiding and deleting information because it was “primarily intended to help improve the agency’s data protection protocols and ensure that sensitive data are safeguarded”. However, state agencies are already required to protect personal and private data with the MN Data Practices Act so this move is designed to limit the information we can have.
The DHS annually gets about $10 Billion of our tax dollars and is seeking to hide information that belongs to the public. For deep research into complicated matters, you need to be able to track all communication for a given agency to put all of the pieces together. This action will severely limit the ability by citizens to know how the DHS responds with incidents or with how certain policies are created.
Minnesota does not have a specific policy that governs over departments and agencies for the retention of data. This gives the DHS the ability to eliminate proper oversight from the citizens who pay their salaries! They must be forgetting that it is not government data, it is OUR data. Aside from the philosophical argument, there is no practical argument to this corrupt DHS decision because data storage is cheap, effective, and secure. It does not appear that any other agency or department deletes their emails in this fashion, so what is the DHS hoping to cover up?
Minnesota has been no stranger to fraud and corruption. Most notably, the Feeding our Future scam was uncovered that showed how our tax dollars were truly being spent. The Department of Human Services haven’t been angels themselves with past compliance and oversight issues. This move to limit the public’s oversight of our state will do us major harm.
Patriots in Minnesota must take immediate action and request all data from the DHS that is scheduled for deletion. We deserve any and all records that do not contain private data so we can ensure no corruption is taking place. Consider this a call to action: Find an issue within the DHS that you want to dig into, request the data, and save it so it cannot be deleted. The removal of transparency is a slap in the face to citizens who wish to inform themselves. We the People need to rise up or all semblance of freedom will dissipate.