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SB35

  • hastings 031319Legislation would improve accessibility of mental health treatment

    SPRINGFIELD – A package of legislation to improve accessibility to mental health treatment was announced this morning at a news conference with Illinois lawmakers.

    State Senator Michael E. Hastings is a supporter of the initiative.

    “It’s no secret that we have a societal problem on our hands with the accessibility of mental health treatment,” Hastings (D-Tinley Park) said. “We must make sure those who need help are able to receive it as quickly and safely as possible. This package is a necessary step as we in the Illinois Senate look to make mental health treatments more accessible to those in need.”

  • castro 020718ELGIN –Gov. Bruce Rauner axed a measure from State Senator Cristina Castro (D-Elgin) Friday that would have protected undocumented immigrant tenants from harassment by landlords.

    “This once again proves the governor is no friend of Illinois’ diverse immigrant communities,” Castro said. “Gov. Rauner continues to flock President Trump’s hostile right-wing agenda instead of embracing the contributions diversity brings to our state and society. Illinois needs a leader, not a Trump follower.”

    Rauner issued vetoes on three measures, including Castro’s Senate Bill 3103, which would create the Immigrant Tenant Protection Act to prohibit landlords from questioning a tenant’s immigration status as a means of harassment or to force an eviction.

    Castro’s measure would allow tenants to report criminal activity or habitability issues without being targeted based on their immigration status.

    “This measure would simply put protections in place to ensure that landlords were not holding their tenants’ immigration status over their head to demand higher rent or eviction,” Castro said. “Tenants should have the freedom to come forward and report these crimes, no matter their citizenship status. It is important, not only for the tenant’s safety, but the safety of our communities.”

    House Action Illinois, Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law, Latino Policy Forum, Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Chicago, Illinois Coalition Against Domestic Violence and SEIU Healthcare are a few of the organizations in support of the measure.

    Rauner also vetoed The Immigration Safe Zones Act (SB 35), which would have directed the Illinois Attorney General to develop model policies for courthouses, schools, libraries, medical facilities and shelters on how to handle immigration enforcement activity, and the VOICES Act (SB 34), which would have set consistent rules for law enforcement agencies that work with survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, trafficking and certain other crimes.

    Castro pledges to work with her colleagues to override these discriminatory vetoes.

    “Gov Rauner refuses to stand up for minority communities across our state,” Castro said. “Every time we need him to lead, he has turned his back on immigrant families who are simply trying to achieve the American dream.”

  • Senate Latino Caucus meets with immigration advocates

    SPRINGFIELD – Senate Latino Caucus members joined Senate President John Cullerton, President Pro Tempore Don Harmon and immigrant and refugee rights advocates this week to discuss the Senate’s recent actions taken to protect immigrant communities.

    “I’m the son of hard-working immigrants, and as an elected official it is my honor and duty to support policies that continue to give the immigrant community the opportunities my family has had in the United States of America,” Latino Caucus Co-Chair Martin A. Sandoval (D-Chicago) said. “Donald Trump is trying to take away these opportunities in the land that I love, but policies like these give hope to our people and show we are a force that can use our sacred legislative process to fight back against bigotry.”

  • harmon 050218SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Don Harmon (D-Oak Park) passed legislation today that would create safe zones in Illinois in which immigration enforcement is limited.

    The measure requires the attorney general to put in place a model policy by April 1, 2019, on limiting assistance with immigration enforcement to the fullest extent permissible at locations including state-funded schools, state-funded medical treatment and health care facilities, public libraries, facilities operated by the secretary of state and state courts.

    These safe zones were in the original version of the Trust Act that passed the Senate but were amended in the House and not in the final version signed by Gov. Bruce Rauner last year.

  • harmon 041718

  • harmon 041018SPRINGFIELD –State Senator Don Harmon (D-Oak Park) passed a measure out of committee today that would create safe zones from immigration enforcement in Illinois.

    The legislation prohibits state and local law enforcement from carrying out federal immigration efforts at locations including state-funded schools, state-funded medical treatment and health care facilities, public libraries, facilities operated by the Secretary of State, and state courts.

    These safe zones were in the original version of the Trust Act that passed the Senate but were amended in the House and not in the final version signed by Gov. Bruce Rauner last year.

    “Immigrants in Illinois are hardworking people who contribute to our communities,” Harmon said. “They have built their homes here. They are raising their families here. They should be treated like human beings, not taken away like criminals when they drop their children off at school.”

    According to a 2014 study by the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, roughly 68 percent of undocumented immigrants participate in the labor force in Illinois, a higher rate than that of the general public (66 percent).

    Harmon’s measure also prohibit applications for state benefits from asking for information related to citizenship or immigration status unless otherwise required by law.

    Senate Bill 35 passed the Senate Judiciary Committee 8-4 today and moves to the full Senate for consideration.