Minnesota Had Some of the Nation's Worst Racial Disparities. Then Came the Pandemic
October 20, 2020
Beti Ali was doing fine at the start of this year. The 42-year-old had a stable job that provided a decent income and health insurance for herself, her 8-year-old daughter and 6-year-old son. Since emigrating from Ethiopia on a lottery visa in her early 20s, Ali has made a career in the hospitality industry, mostly at hotels.
Ali has called Minnesota home for nearly a decade. She now lives in Woodbury, a Twin Cities suburb, with her longtime partner and kids. For most of her time in the state, Ali has worked as a server at Rival House, a bar and restaurant on the bottom floor of the downtown St. Paul DoubleTree hotel.
"Since we opened, I've been there," she said. "I love my job ... I have seniority and I get my day off when I need and personal days."