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Martinez law works to place teachers in hard-to-staff schools

martinez 031319SPRINGFIELD — Assistant Majority Leader Iris Y. Martinez’s measure expanding the ability of schools and future teachers to participate in the Grow Your Own Teacher program became law today.

The Grow Your Own Teacher initiative is a program designed to train people to become teachers in hard-to-staff schools.

“Illinois is dealing with a teacher shortage, so we need to do all that we can to place dedicated teachers in schools,” Martinez (D-Chicago) said. “We especially must work to ensure students at schools that are traditionally hard to staff, like those in low-incomes areas, have the same access to quality education as anyone else.”

The new law will expand the definition of "eligible school" and "hard-to-staff" schools for the initiative to include early childhood programs in which no less than 40 percent of the children it serves are receiving subsidized care under the Department of Human Services' Child Care Assistance Program.

It will also extend eligibility for participation in the initiative to high school students enrolled in a dual credit course at a participating institution of higher education.

House Bill 35 is effective immediately.

Martinez condemns Puerto Rico governor’s remarks

martinez 022019SPRINGFIELD — Assistant Majority Leader Iris Y. Martinez (D-Chicago) released the following statement today as thousands continue to protest Puerto Rico’s governor after leaked text messages uncovered crude, sexist and homophobic remarks made by him and others:

“I’m truly disappointed in the disparaging remarks made by Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello and his allies towards females, members of the LGBTQ community and our beloved island, among other things.

Martinez applauds SCOTUS ruling on census citizenship question

martinez 022019SPRINGFIELD — Assistant Majority Leader Iris Y. Martinez (D-Chicago) released the following statement today after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that there cannot be a citizenship question on the 2020 Census.

“I am glad the Supreme Court acted in the best interest of all Americans by ruling against the Trump administration’s citizenship question. The proposed question was intended to frighten immigrants and discourage them from participating in the census, when full participation is vital to ensuring states get adequate representation in Congress and federal funding. The census is intended to be a full count of everyone residing in the United States, not a tool that the current president can use to further intimidate and terrorize immigrants.”

Martinez appointed to Census Advisory Panel to ensure full count

martinez 022019SPRINGFIELD — Assistant Majority Leader Iris Y. Martinez (D-Chicago) announced that she has been appointed to the bipartisan, bicameral Census Advisory Panel, which will work to reach people in hard-to-count areas during the 2020 Census.

The panel was created as part of an executive order signed by Gov. JB Pritzker today to ensure a full census count in 2020. The order also establishes a Census Office within the Department of Human Services that will administer grants and conduct outreach and education about the census.

“I am thankful that the governor is taking the upcoming census so seriously and working to make sure that every resident in Illinois is counted,” Martinez said. “The consequences of an undercount would affect everyone in our state, so it is important that everyone be able to participate.”

The census is used to determine representation in Congress and federal funding, so Illinois could potentially lose up to two congressional seats and billions in federal dollars if there is an undercount in 2020.

The 2020 Census officially begins on April 1, 2020.

Senator Iris Y. Martinez

Assistant Majority Leader Iris Y. Martinez

Assistant Majority Leader
20th District

Years served:
2003 - Present
 
Committee assignments: Commerce and Economic Development; Education; Energy and Public Utilities; Executive; Government Accountability/Pensions (Vice-Chairperson); Transportation.

Biography: Born Feb. 25, 1956, in Chicago; earned her bachelor's degree in public policy and administration from Northeastern Illinois University in 2009; elected president of the National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators. She is also the Illinois Legislative Latino Caucus Co-Chair; has one daughter.

Associated Representatives:
Jaime M. Andrade, Jr.
Will Guzzardi