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Office of the Revisor of Statutes

Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

  
    Laws of Minnesota 1993 

                        CHAPTER 284-S.F.No. 1046 
           An act relating to crimes; prohibiting persons from 
          interfering with access to health care; prescribing 
          penalties; authorizing civil and equitable remedies; 
          amending Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 488A.101; 
          proposing coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes, 
          chapter 609. 
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
    Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 488A.101, is 
amended to read: 
    488A.101 [COUNTY ATTORNEY AS PROSECUTOR, NOTICE TO COUNTY.] 
    A municipality or other subdivision of government seeking 
to use the county attorney for violations enumerated in section 
488A.10, subdivision 11 shall notify the county board of its 
intention to use the services of the county attorney at least 60 
days prior to the adoption of the board's annual budget each 
year.  A municipality may enter into an agreement with the 
county board and the county attorney to provide prosecution 
services for any criminal offense on a case-by-case basis. 
    Sec. 2.  [609.7495] [PHYSICAL INTERFERENCE WITH SAFE ACCESS 
TO HEALTH CARE.] 
    Subdivision 1.  [DEFINITIONS.] For the purposes of this 
section, the following terms have the meanings given them. 
    (a) "Facility" means any of the following: 
    (1) a hospital or other health institution licensed under 
sections 144.50 to 144.56; 
    (2) a medical facility as defined in section 144.561; 
    (3) an agency, clinic, or office operated under the 
direction of or under contract with the commissioner of health 
or a community health board, as defined in section 145A.02; 
    (4) a facility providing counseling regarding options for 
medical services or recovery from an addiction; 
    (5) a facility providing emergency shelter services for 
battered women, as defined in section 611A.31, subdivision 3, or 
a facility providing transitional housing for battered women and 
their children; 
    (6) a residential care home or home as defined in section 
144B.01, subdivision 5; 
    (7) a facility as defined in section 626.556, subdivision 
2, paragraph (f); 
    (8) a facility as defined in section 626.557, subdivision 
2, paragraph (a), where the services described in that paragraph 
are provided; 
    (9) a place to or from which ambulance service, as defined 
in section 144.801, is provided or sought to be provided; and 
    (10) a hospice program licensed under section 144A.48. 
    (b) "Aggrieved party" means a person whose access to or 
egress from a facility is obstructed in violation of subdivision 
2, or the facility. 
    Subd. 2.  [OBSTRUCTING ACCESS PROHIBITED.] A person is 
guilty of a gross misdemeanor who intentionally and physically 
obstructs any individual's access to or egress from a facility. 
    Subd. 3.  [NOT APPLICABLE.] Nothing in this section shall 
be construed to impair the right of any individual or group to 
engage in speech protected by the United States Constitution, 
the Minnesota Constitution, or federal or state law, including 
but not limited to peaceful and lawful handbilling and picketing.
    Subd. 4.  [CIVIL REMEDIES.] (a) A party who is aggrieved by 
an act prohibited by this section, or by an attempt or 
conspiracy to commit an act prohibited by this section, may 
bring an action for damages, injunctive or declaratory relief, 
as appropriate, in district court against any person or entity 
who has violated or has conspired to violate this section. 
    (b) A party who prevails in a civil action under this 
subdivision is entitled to recover from the violator damages, 
costs, attorney fees, and other relief as determined by the 
court.  In addition to all other damages, the court may award to 
the aggrieved party a civil penalty of up to $1,000 for each 
violation.  If the aggrieved party is a facility and the 
political subdivision where the violation occurred incurred law 
enforcement or prosecution expenses in connection with the same 
violation, the court shall award any civil penalty it imposes to 
the political subdivision instead of to the facility. 
    (c) The remedies provided by this subdivision are in 
addition to any other legal or equitable remedies the aggrieved 
party may have and are not intended to diminish or substitute 
for those remedies or to be exclusive. 
    Sec. 3.  [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 
    Sections 1 and 2 are effective the day following final 
enactment and apply to acts committed on or after that date. 
    Presented to the governor May 15, 1993 
    Signed by the governor May 19, 1993, 10:35 a.m.