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  • castro 050417SPRINGFIELD — The Illinois Senate approved a measure today that limits local police interaction with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement actions, and rebuilds trust between police and immigrant communities. The Trust Act prohibits law enforcement agencies from engaging in immigration enforcement unless a warrant issued by a judge is presented, bans detaining a person based on their immigration status and forbids the use of any state or local resources to help create a federal registry based on race, national origin, religion or other protected classes.

    Illinois State Senator Cristina Castro (D-Elgin) released the following statements following the vote on Senate Bill 31:

    “We should be fostering safe communities where a person’s fear of hostility, or having their families torn apart, does not get in the way of public safety. A person in the shadows often will not come forward to report crimes against themselves or other people because they fear their status may be exposed. When someone’s fear gets in the way of cooperation, our communities become less safe. This legislation gives us the tools to put Illinois on the right track, keep families together and build stronger communities.”

  • Miguel Angel Mancera, Mayor of Mexico CityToday the Senate had the honor of welcoming Miguel Angel Mancera, Mayor of Mexico City.

    Dr. Mancera has a long-standing commitment to public service. Before becoming mayor, he served as an advisor to municipal officials before becoming Attorney General of Mexico City in 2008.

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  • jjc elmhurst2Illinois Senate President John J. Cullerton recently spoke at a government forum sponsored by Elmhurst College. His presentation was on the fiscal realities Illinois faces with its budget and why the state needs to get its backlog of unpaid bills under control.

    The following slides accompanied his speech and walk through where the state of Illinois gets its funding, where that funding goes, the true pressures facing the state budget and the devastating trajectory of the backlog of unpaid bills.

    The Senate President has been working on what’s been called a “Grand Bargain” to try to stabilize the state’s finances and enact key economic reforms.

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    The Children's Place Association is a nonprofit in Humboldt Park that provides services for health, education, family stability and financial stability for some of Chicago's most vulnerable families. Due to the budget impasse, they are missing over $300,000 in state funding.

  • manar inaSPRINGFIELD – Too many questions exist about Wexford Health Sources’ oversight of health care in Illinois prisons, which is reason enough for Gov. Bruce Rauner to cease efforts to outsource prison nurses to the Pennsylvania corporation, Senator Andy Manar said Tuesday.

    Manar, a Bunker Hill Democrat, is co-sponsoring a bipartisan plan to stop the governor from outsourcing additional medical and mental health service jobs from state prisons. Senator Sam McCann (R-Plainview) also is a co-sponsor of the plan.

  • stadelman 031517SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Steve Stadelman (D-Rockford) realized the importance of allowing pharmacists to fill emergency prescriptions on a family vacation a few years ago.

    Stadelman’s son, who was 13 at the time, has Type 1 diabetes. During their vacation, he realized that he had no insulin or needles. Because it was a Saturday, the pharmacy they visited was unable to reach his doctor to authorize a prescription.

    “This really drove home to me that getting a prescription filled quickly can be a matter of life or death,” Stadelman said. “I started to do research and saw that many other states allow emergency refills to take place.”

    Stadelman’s legislation would allow pharmacists to refill a prescription without a doctor’s authorization if abruptly discontinuing the medication would cause medical harm or danger to the person. It would not allow emergency refills of controlled substances. Pharmacists could fill a prescription for a time deemed reasonably necessary.  

    SB 1790 passed the Senate Licensed Activities and Pensions committee and will move to the Senate for consideration.

  • manar 031617Senator Andy Manar, a Bunker Hill Democrat and chairman of a key Senate budget committee, explains the status of budget negotiations at the Capitol, including prospects for the Senate’s so-called “grand bargain,” the Rauner administration's reluctance to suggest cuts and examples of apparent mismanagement of the state by the governor.

  • Celebrating Women's History Month

    Women have always worked, but have often gone unrecognized for their influences within American culture. this video, members recognized individuals who have successfully challenged the role of women in both the labor force and business. By honoring trailblazing women in labor and business, various women were highlighted by their efforts to diminish the inequalities women face in the workplace.

  • ilbc presserAfter three years of the governor failing to fulfill his constitutional obligation to introduce a balanced budget, the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus assembled for a press conference to say enough is enough. The Illinois Legislative Black Caucus is a collection of black legislators from both the House of Representatives and Senate.

    "I am not sure what could be said about the governor's three years of inactivity," said Assistant Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood), chairwoman for the Joint Legislative Black Caucus. "Before he was sworn in he stated he wanted to shake things up in Springfield; in the process, he has shaken a hole in our state."

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  • Black History Month 2017 - The Crisis in Black EducationSenators comment on this year's Black History Month theme, “The Crisis in Black Education.”

    Over the years the crisis in black education has grown significantly. In urban neighborhoods, public schooling systems lack resources and have overcrowded classrooms, which result to students of color reaping the disproportionate shortfalls of the racial achievement gap.

    In the past, whether by laws, policies, or practices, racially separated schools remained the norm in America. Because of that, black students today are underperforming and are not advancing like their white counterparts.

    This year’s national theme, The Crisis in Black Education, focuses on the evolution of black education and its meaning as it empowers students to grow, achieve and prosper.

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  • mcguire 020817University students and faculty from all over Illinois rallied in Springfield Wednesday to call for an end to the budget impasse that has held up funding for higher education and imperiled programs and services at the state’s public colleges.

    Joined by a bipartisan group of lawmakers from the Illinois House and Senate, the Federation of Independent Illinois Colleges and Universities called on the General Assembly and Gov. Bruce Rauner to swiftly approve funding for state universities. A previous stopgap measure expired at the end of 2016, and colleges have since gone without state funding.

    State Senator and Chairman of the Senate Higher Education Committee, Pat McGuire, D-Joliet, addressed the rally to speak on the grand bargain that would include $1.1 billion in funding for higher education and take steps to end the budget impasse that he said has hurt the lives of students and the schools they attend.

    “I know for many of you this is not your first trip to our state capital to advocate for funding for higher education,” McGuire said. “Your persistence is having an effect.”

    The Senate continues to negotiate details of a budget plan this week as the General Assembly awaits the governor’s upcoming budget proposal. McGuire urged the students, faculty, and activists at the rally to send a clear message to the General Assembly and the governor to pass the bipartisan compromise.

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  • hunter sugarlessSPRINGFIELD – A spoon full of sugar may help the medicine go down, but too much sugar in your diet can mean a lifetime of expensive health problems. That’s why Senator Mattie Hunter is partnering with the American Heart Association and the Illinois Alliance to Prevent Obesity to promote “Sugarless Wednesday”, an initiative aimed to raise awareness of the harmful effects of added sugar in our daily diets.

    “Sugarless Wednesday” began Jan. 4 with a goal of people eliminating soda and cutting back on sweets and sugary snacks each Wednesday of the month.

  • mlk jrThis Monday, Americans will pause to remember the tireless work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who dedicated his life to advancing civil rights and justice for African-Americans and other marginalized groups throughout the United States.

    In honor of Dr. King, many Americans will take the day to volunteer in their communities. Serve Illinois, a state commission tasked with increasing volunteerism, offers information on a multitude of volunteer opportunities across the state.

    This Monday, we remember the timeless words of Dr. King: “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”

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