Crowe seeks protections for personal genetic data

Published: Wednesday, May 29, 2019 11:07 AM

dnatestkit 052119SPRINGFIELD – Illinois residents’ genetic testing results would be protected under a measure carried by State Senator Rachelle Crowe (D-Glen Carbon).

“As technology advances, we need to respond to new ways it can be improperly used, and the personal data of private citizens is being used inappropriately every day,” Crowe said. “Keeping genetic information confidential is crucial to protecting a person’s right to privacy.”

The legislation prohibits companies that provide direct-to-consumer commercial genetic testing, such as and 23andMe, from sharing any test results with health or life insurance companies without the consumer’s consent.

The number of people who have had their DNA analyzed with direct-to-consumer genetic genealogy tests more than doubled during 2017 and exceeded 12 million in 2018. Last year, an estimated 1 in 25 American adults sought out testing of personal genetic data.

House Bill 2189 passed the Senate and now awaits the governor’s signature to become law.

Senate OKs Crowe’s plan on stricter penalties for crimes in places of worship

Published: Tuesday, May 28, 2019 09:35 AM

crowe 052819SPRINGFIELD – People convicted of assault or battery in a church, synagogue, mosque or other place of worship would face stricter consequences under legislation carried by State Senator Rachelle Crowe.

Crowe, a Democrat from Glen Carbon, is pushing to add an aggravating factor to sentencing considerations for those who commit assault or battery when committed in religious settings.  

“This measure is initiating protections for people to worship freely without fear,” Crowe said. “We must take action against those who instigate attacks on churches, mosques and synagogues, and also seek more severe punishment for them.”

Aggravating factors can influence a court’s decision to include an imprisoning sentence or increase the chance for a more severe sentence.

This initiative continues the work of Senator Crowe’s predecessor, former State Senator Bill Haine. The legislation was inspired by a shooting that occurred the First Baptist Church in Maryville in 2009, in which Rev. Fred Winters lost his life and two parishioners were injured.

“Church is one of the places you should feel the safest,” Cindy Winters, widow of Rev. Winters, said. “Fred’s death was heartbreaking, not only for me, but for our entire community, and I sympathize with those who have felt a comparable loss. I am extremely grateful to Senator Crowe for her work to get this passed.”

Current law distinguishes aggravated assault as a Class A misdemeanor and aggravated battery as a Class 3 felony. Crowe’s legislation would classify aggravated battery as a Class 1 felony when the accused causes great harm or permanent disability to a victim engaged in prayer or religious service.

“Advancing this legislation wouldn’t have been possible without Representative Mayfield’s sponsorship in the House,” Crowe said. “I am thankful for her work and commitment.”

House Bill 38 passed the Senate and is going back to the House of Representatives for a vote of concurrence.

Jersey County receives grant to clean up abandoned properties

Published: Friday, May 24, 2019 10:55 AM

vacanthouse 052419GLEN CARBON – Jersey County is getting assistance from the Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) to fix up vacant properties under a state grant plan State Senator Rachelle Crowe (D-Glen Carbon) announced today.

“It’s imperative to get these small towns the funds to keep up the appearance of their streets,” Crowe said. “I think it will have a domino effect, providing work for those who need it and ultimately attracting people to our communities.”

The Abandoned Residential Property Municipality Relief Program (APP) will provide Jersey County with a $20,000 grant to be used for maintaining weeds and grass, trimming trees and bushes, installing fences to protect the public and repairing or demolishing abandoned property.

Jersey County is one recipient of 62 community stabilization grants awarded by the IHDA, totaling $8.1 million.

Senate approves Crowe’s plan for insurance coverage of breast milk

Published: Wednesday, May 22, 2019 03:58 PM

crowe 052219SPRINGFIELD – Mothers needing donated breast milk would benefit under new legislation carried by State Senator Rachelle Crowe (D-Glen Carbon).

The initiative would require insurance companies to cover costs of pasteurized donated human breast milk for mothers with infants deemed medically necessary in Illinois.

“Mothers incapable of producing milk should still have access to the benefits and nutrients of breast milk for their newborns with medical conditions,” Crowe said.

Under the measure for coverage, the milk must come from a milk bank licensed by the Illinois Department of Public Health or a source that meets guidelines set by the Human Milk Banking Association of North America. The mother must be unable to produce milk to meet the infant’s needs, and the infant must also be critically ill.

This legislation requires the breast milk to be prescribed by a licensed medical professional.

House Bill 3509 will now return to the House for a concurrence vote.

Sen. Rachelle Crowe

Sen. Rachell Crowe

56th District

Years served: 2019–Present

Committee assignments: Appropriations II; Committee of the Whole; Criminal Law; Judiciary (Vice-Chairperson); Labor; Licensed Activities; Veterans Affairs.

Associated Representatives:
Monica Bristow
Katie Stuart