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Jones law will improve minority representation in apprenticeship programs

jones 073019SPRINGFIELD – Legislation sponsored by State Senator Emil Jones III (D-Chicago) that will increase access to apprenticeship programs in the construction industry for African Americans was signed into law.

Jones's legislation creates the Bureau on Apprenticeship Programs within the Illinois Department of Labor and creates an advisory board of 12 legislators (three from each caucus, appointed by the caucus leader). The goal of the commission is to increase minority participation in apprenticeship programs.

Jones supports balanced budget to move Illinois toward economic stability

jones 030519SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Emil Jones (D-Chicago) voted today for a budget that increases violence prevention grants, education and DCFS.

“Our state was in a hostile place for a few years, but this year’s budget puts Illinois in better shape than before,” Jones said. “We are on a path toward stability and funding all the services Illinois needs.”

“Additionally, the budget is funding a program that helps our kids escape violence and creates new career opportunities,” Jones said.

The budget appropriates $12 million in grants to address violence prevention efforts state statewide, including downstate communities, Chicago and the suburbs.

P-12 education will have record-breaking funding of $8.8 billion, and higher education will receive a 5 percent increase to support community college and universities.

The Monetary Award Program (MAP) will receive $451 million in next year’s budget – a $50 million increase over last year.

AIM HIGH, a program that works to reduce the costs of college for working and middle-class students, will receive an additional $10 million in funding, a move Jones hopes will help combat student out migration.    

DCFS will receive an additional $100 million to hire 300 staff and caseworkers, reducing worker caseload and ensuring more attentive oversight for children and families under the agency’s care.

Jones urges minority participation in sports betting and gaming legislation

Sen. Jones PictureSPRINGFIELD – State Senator Emil Jones III (D-Chicago)  joined lawmakers representing districts with large numbers of minorities in urging state leaders to take into account minority business goals when discussing sports betting and gaming legislation.

In a letter sent to Gov. JB Pritzker, Senate President John Cullerton, House Speaker Mike Madigan, and legislative leaders, Jones said the gaming industry needs to provide all Illinoisans a seat at the table and not just organizations who are currently in the industry.

“For years now, the Illinois Gaming Board has been strongly urging and requiring the gaming industry to do better in seeing to it that there is diversity at all levels of operation,” Jones said in the letter. “There has been little progress in that respect.”

Always an advocate for greater participation by minorities in industries, Jones recently sponsored a measure that would increase access to apprenticeship programs in the construction industry for African Americans.

Lawmakers who signed the letter said sports betting and gaming legislation will not get their vote if there are not revisions to accommodate minority involvement.

A copy of the letter is attached.

Jones plan would enhance diversity in construction apprenticeship programs

jones 052419SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Emil Jones III is the sponsor of a measure that would increase access to apprenticeship programs in the construction industry for African-Americans.

Jones’s legislation creates the Bureau on Apprenticeship Programs within the Illinois Department of Labor and creates an advisory board of 12 legislators (three from each caucus, appointed by the caucus leader). The goal of the commission is to increase minority participation in apprenticeship programs.

“Like in many other areas of society, minorities are underrepresented in apprenticeship programs,” Jones (D-Chicago) said. “Apprenticeships often provide a spring broad to good jobs, and we must ensure everyone has equal access to those opportunities.”

Illinois’ workforce stands at about 6 million, and there are about 16,000 active apprenticeships in the 13 basic crafts in the state's 102 counties.

The Senate approved Senate Bill 534. The bill moves to the House for consideration.

Senator Emil Jones III


14th District

Years served:
2009 - Present

Committee assignments: Energy and Public Utilities; Higher Education; Licensed Activities (Chairperson); Transportation; Veterans Affairs.

Biography: Born May 16th, 1978, in Chicago; son of former Senate President Emil Jones Jr. and the late Patricia Jones; graduated from Chicago Christian High School in Palos Heights; attended Chicago State University and Robert Morris College in Chicago; former administrator at the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.

Associated Representatives:
Robert Rita
Justin Slaughter