Hepatitis C screening offers would be required by new law

mulroe-hepcSPRINGFIELD – For those born between the years of 1945 and 1965, doctors will be required to offer Hepatitis C screenings to patients under a new proposal from Senator John Mulroe (D-Chicago). The measure passed the Senate today.

“Hepatitis C is known as the silent killer because, most often, by the time a patient is diagnosed, the disease has already done widespread damage,” Mulroe said. “By requiring this screening, we are able to spare compounded illness and pain to those people who may have the disease but don’t know it.”

Read more: Hepatitis C screening offers would be required by new law


Another battle against hunger won in a SNAP

biss-snapSPRINGFIELD — The Illinois Senate voted today by a vote of 34-17 to increase access to the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as food stamps). Illinoisans earning 165 percent of the Federal Poverty Level will now be eligible for these benefits, up from 130 percent, the lowest permitted by federal law.

"Expanding access to SNAP benefits is a no-brainer," said state Senator Daniel Biss (D-Evanston). "We have the opportunity to give this lifeline to more hard-working families in Illinois, and because it's completely federally funded, it is fiscally responsible even in our current difficult budgetary situation."

Read more: Another battle against hunger won in a SNAP


Senate passes lifesaving heroin antidote law by Bush

bush-narcan-passes2SPRINGFIELD — The Illinois Senate voted to expand access to emergency, life-saving medication, announced State Sen. Melinda Bush, D-Grayslake.

“Heroin use among our youth is a serious problem in the suburban areas I represent,” Bush said. “In the couple of weeks between this measure passing out of committee and today’s vote, Lake Zurich police saved another life with naloxone hydrochloride. By making opioid antidotes like Narcan available by prescription at pharmacies, we give families the same chance to stop a heroin overdose and save a life.”

Dubbed “Lali’s Law,” Senate Bill 1466 would make Narcan available by prescription, allowing families to keep it on hand in the event of an emergency.

Read more: Senate passes lifesaving heroin antidote law by Bush


Earth Day at the Capitol (VIDEO)

CleanJobs042215On Earth Day, dozens of environmental activists traveled to the state Capitol to remind lawmakers how important it is to protect the Earth. Many of the green-clad residents advocated in favor of Senator Don Harmon’s legislation to increase Illinois’ use of renewable energy, like solar panels and wind turbines.

Harmon, Senator Dave Koehler, Chair of the Environment and Conservation Committee, and Senator Michael Noland spoke at the activists’ rally.

Read more: Earth Day at the Capitol (VIDEO)


Victims of domestic violence, people with disabilities, protected from eviction under Hutchinson plan

toi-042215SPRINGFIELD – Victims of domestic violence and individuals with disabilities will not have to worry about losing their homes if they contact authorities for help under a proposal that passed the Senate today.

“The last thing a survivor of a traumatic assault or someone struggling with a disability needs to worry about is being evicted simply for calling the police for help,” sponsor State Senator Toi Hutchinson (D – Chicago Heights) said.

Read more: Victims of domestic violence, people with disabilities, protected from eviction under Hutchinson plan


Tom Cullerton promotes good schools

tc-schlbdelectSPRINGFIELD- Local school boards make critical decisions concerning curriculum, negotiating teacher contracts and budgets.  However, only about 20 percent of registered voters show up to vote for these important positions.

Illinois residents may be given the opportunity to vote for their school board members alongside candidates for the White House and U.S. Senate under legislation Senator Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park) passed in an effort to fight voter fatigue.

“Good schools translate to good businesses in our communities. Voting in local school board elections means voting for the success of our students and economy,” said Cullerton.

Read more: Tom Cullerton promotes good schools


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Photo of the Day

State Senator Mattie Hunter discusses Senate Resolution 142 on the Senate floor Thursday.


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