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New Sims law makes voting accessible to Illinois students

young voterCHICAGO—A plan to give students time off to vote was signed into law on Wednesday.

State Senator Elgie R. Sims, Jr. (D-Chicago) led efforts to pass legislation, which allows students to vote during school hours. This comes after push back from school administrators during a “March to the Polls.” Students from those schools rallied to pass the new law out of committee last year, and some were there to see it signed into law.

Sims, Castro join ethics commission in hopes of holding legislators accountable

sims 112119CHICAGO—To respond to recent allegations involving Springfield lawmakers and prevent future wrongdoing, State Senator Elgie R. Sims, Jr. has been named as the co-chair of a new joint legislative commission that will recommend changes to state ethics laws. Senator Cristina Castro has also been appointed to the commission.

“The last several months have seen very troubling developments and the people of Illinois expect us to be and do better,” Sims said. “For the people to have faith in their government we must hold ourselves to the highest of standards, and when public officials do wrong, they should face the consequences. Those are the beliefs that will guide me as I serve on this commission.”

 

New Sims law cracks down on criminal history errors

gavel 082119SPRINGFIELD—A new law sponsored by Senator Elgie R. Sims Jr. (D-Chicago) will hold businesses that erroneously publish criminal history records accountable.

The plan requires companies that make errors on criminal history reports to correct them within five business days.

“Errors on criminal history reports can wreak havoc on a person’s life,” Sims said. “It can cost them a job or make it hard for them to find proper housing. This law will ensure companies that publish this information fix mistakes in a reasonable amount of time or face consequences for their negligence.”

Senate Bill 1599 expands the Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act so that a person or entity that publishes a person's criminal record information on a criminal history report that charges a fee for removal or correction of the information must correct any errors within five business days after notification of the error.

A person who faces harm as a result of a failure to correct published criminal record information within that time frame is entitled to damages of $100 per day, plus attorney's fees. 

“I am grateful to my colleagues and the governor for taking this issue seriously and helping to prevent loss of opportunities for people throughout the state,” Sims said. “This new law will help Illinoisans better protect their reputation and quickly correct any issues.”

SB 1599 was signed into law Tuesday and is effective Jan. 1, 2020.

Sims: New law will help lower alarming maternal death rate

sims 060619SPRINGFIELD— A plan sponsored by State Senator Elgie R. Sims Jr. (D-Chicago) that aims to help lower the alarming maternal death rate in Illinois was signed into law Friday.

The plan will create a Diversity in Health Care Professions Task Force in an effort to develop strategies that will lead to increasing the number of minority health care professionals in Illinois.

“It is important that the health care field is a diverse one, as diversity improves the quality of the services and care provided,” Sims said. “Our health care providers are providing good, quality services; however, many times the health care needs of women, particularly black women and other women of color, aren’t taken seriously until it’s too late. This new law will help diversify the field of physicians and other health care professionals to ensure these mothers receive sound medical advice and the highest quality of care.”

The bill requires the task force to prepare annual summary reports and recommendations to the governor and legislature starting Dec. 1, 2020.

House Bill 2896 takes effect on Jan. 1, 2020.

Senator Elgie R. Sims Jr.

Senator Elgie R. Sims Jr.

17th District

Years served: 2012–2018 (House); 2018–Present (Senate)

Committee assignments: Appropriations I; Appropriations II (Vice-Chairperson); Criminal Law (Chairperson); Judiciary; Telecommunications & InfoTechnology; Subcommittee on Capital.

Biography: Attorney; born in Chicago; B.S., Political Science, Illinois State University; M.P.A., University of Illinois; J.D., Loyola University Chicago School of Law; married, has two children.

Associated Representatives:
Marcus C. Evans, Jr.
Nicholas K. Smith