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Part of Collins’ and Flowers’ plan to fight maternal, infant mortality becomes law

Published: Wednesday, July 17, 2019 02:34 PM

collins maternal 051719SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Jacqueline Collins and State Rep. Mary Flowers issued the following statements today as Gov. JB Pritzker signed into law part of the legislative package aimed at reducing rising infant and maternal mortality rates:

“We brought this plan forward to fight against an environment where women’s concerns over their bodies and their children’s well-being are diminished or ignored, often in ways that can be deadly for women of color in particular,” Collins said. “When we see studies that show a college-educated black woman in a high-paying career is more likely to die as a consequence of childbirth than a white woman without a high school diploma, we have to act.”

Morrison concerned with high-paid CEO while workers with disabilities lose employment

Published: Wednesday, July 17, 2019 09:03 AM

morrison 032719SPRINGFIELD – News that Land of Lincoln Goodwill in Springfield is laying off dozens of workers with disabilities without a valid explanation is drawing concern from State Senator Julie Morrison (D-Deerfield).

“It is disheartening that Goodwill would use false excuses to terminate the employment of reliable, hardworking staff with disabilities in Illinois,” Morrison said.

Morrison – who is chair of the Senate Human Services Committee and founder of the Special Needs Caucus – passed a series of measures this year aimed at increasing state employment of individuals with disabilities, all aimed at breaking down the barriers to employment.

New Holmes law overhauls child abuse reporting from psychiatric hospitals

Published: Monday, July 15, 2019 08:59 AM

holmes 053119SPRINGFIELD – After an October report from ProPublica revealed allegations of abuse and neglect of children at the Aurora Chicago Lakeshore Hospital, concerns were heightened about coordination between the Department of Children and Family Services and other state agencies.

State Senator Linda Holmes’ (D-Aurora) House Bill 831 requires better reporting to rectify those cases by requiring DCFS to notify the Director of Public Health and the Director of Healthcare and Family Services when they occur. Gov. JB Pritzker signed the bill into law today.

“After DCFS found neglect and sexual abuse by staff, as well as failure to provide a safe environment and monitor these children’s care and medication at this psychiatric hospital, it became obvious more oversight is needed to prevent this from happening,” Holmes said. “Federal and state investigations have revealed these tragedies and we must do everything we can to stop it.”

The Department of Public Health inspects and licenses hospitals, including psychiatric hospitals where children in need of that care reside. DPH has the authority to revoke, deny or suspend a hospital’s license. The Department of Healthcare and Family Services is responsible for providing healthcare coverage for adults and children who qualify for Medicaid, which covers many children in these hospitals’ care.

“These agencies must be engaged to help investigate and correct the conditions that lead to cases of abuse and neglect,” Holmes said. “Whenever DCFS receive a report by any means, at any facility, they should notify the directors of DPH and HFS so they can take action. The numerous charges against DCFS in safely caring for children under their supervision are disturbing and this is just one of many legislative actions underway to reform child welfare.”

Among the cases investigated were children who had been cleared for discharge weeks or months before, but they were languishing in the hospitals because DCFS had failed to find other places for them.

The new law takes effect Jan. 1, 2020.

Morrison law to require better preparation to treat students with epilepsy

Published: Friday, July 12, 2019 03:48 PM

Sen. Julie MorrisonSPRINGFIELD – Students with epilepsy will be better protected at school under a new law signed today by Gov. JB Pritzker and sponsored by State Senator Julie Morrison (D-Deerfield).

“Nationwide, 470,000 children are affected by epilepsy. As children spend a large part of their day in the classroom, it is imperative schools are prepared to handle the unique set of health care needs of these students,” Morrison said.

Morrison’s new law – contained in House Bill 1475 – creates the Seizure Smart School Act, which would require the development of a plan for students with epilepsy that includes training for employees and care aides on how to handle students with the disorder.

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News Releases

IMAGE New Holmes law overhauls child abuse reporting from psychiatric hospitals
Monday, 15 July 2019
SPRINGFIELD – After an October report from ProPublica revealed allegations of abuse and neglect of children at the Aurora Chicago Lakeshore...

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IMAGE Morrison law to require better preparation to treat students with epilepsy
Friday, 12 July 2019
SPRINGFIELD – Students with epilepsy will be better protected at school under a new law signed today by Gov. JB Pritzker and sponsored by State...

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IMAGE Bertino-Tarrant’s new law ensures reliable and experienced teachers in Illinois’ classrooms
Friday, 12 July 2019
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Thursday, 11 July 2019
PEORIA – Assistant Majority Leader Dave Koehler (D-Peoria) joined House Deputy Majority Leader Jehan Gordon-Booth and Gov. JB Pritzker to tout...

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IMAGE Crowe supports legislation increasing line-of-duty death benefits
Tuesday, 09 July 2019
SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker signed a measure last month doubling the benefits for families of law enforcement officers and firefighters killed...

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