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Steans pushes raise for workers who care for people with disabilities

Sen. Heather A. Steans“We should not have needed a court order to tell us to do this.”

SPRINGFIELD — Responding to a 2017 court order that ruled Illinois has not fulfilled its end of an agreement to better care for the developmentally disabled, State Senator Heather Steans (D-Chicago) passed legislation out of the Illinois Senate today to give the people who take care of their day-to-day needs a raise.

“Direct care workers in these facilities are feeding, clothing, bathing, monitoring, diagnosing and treating people with developmental disabilities and complicated medical conditions, and they’re currently doing that for less pay than the average receptionist,” Steans said. “They make less than Chicago’s minimum wage. It is a source of burnout, of turnover, of resentment. The situation has to change – both for the workers and the people they care for.”

Steans: With ratification by 38 states, it’s time for the Equal Rights Amendment

steans 041119CHICAGO – State Senator Heather Steans issued the following statement on news that Virginia today became the 38th state to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment:

“Virginia’s historic action today, a century after the ERA was introduced and women gained the vote, should tell us that the time is long overdue for this to become the law,” Steans said. “The idea that our government should not have the power to discriminate against on the basis of sex should not be controversial. Because of the time that has passed, there remains work to be done, but the American people have spoken loud and clear: It’s time for the Equal Rights Amendment.”

As legalized cannabis poised to begin, Pritzker signs Steans’ tweaks to new law

steans 120419CHICAGO — Less than a month before cannabis cultivation and sale become legal in Illinois, Gov. JB Pritzker signed legislation finalizing certain parts of the new statute alongside the bill’s sponsor, State Senator Heather A. Steans, at a ceremony in Chicago’s Cabrini-Green neighborhood.

“When we embarked on the long road to legalization of adult-use cannabis, we set out not just to end bad drug policy and lay the groundwork for opportunity in a new industry,” Steans said, “we also sought ways to make amends for how drug enforcement has ravaged communities. As we stand poised for legalization on Jan. 1, I want to thank everyone who worked tirelessly to make this legislation a reality, and I want to remind all of us that to ensure we see justice, we must listen to the community and respond to their concerns swiftly.”

In ethics reform bill, Steans moves to increase lobbying transparency

steans 111419SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Heather Steans is pushing for new ethics reforms in the wake of scandals surrounding numerous Springfield lawmakers in recent months, passing legislation out of the Senate today.

“Today we took the first steps to reform the disturbing, unacceptable behavior that has rocked state government in recent months,” said Steans, (D-Chicago). “Raids, arrests and indictments are not what people expect of their elected officials. While they mean that the ethics laws we already passed are working, and law enforcement is doing its job, it also means we need to change the culture in Springfield, close loopholes, and eliminate grey areas. We need to earn back your trust.”

Senator Heather Steans

steans-2014-150

7th District

Years served: 2008 - Present

Committee assignments: Appropriations I (Chairperson); Appropriations II; Environment and Conservation; Executive Appointments; Executive; Government Accountability/Pensions; Human Services; Oversight Medicaid Mang. Care, Spec (Chairperson); Subcommittee on Special Issues (HS) (Sub-Chairperson).

Biography: Born May 8, 1963, in Lake Forest, IL; B.A. in Urban Studies from Princeton; M.A. in Public Policy from Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government; former budget director, WI Department of Industry, Labor and Human Relations and former strategic planner, Chicago Public Schools; married (husband, Leo Smith) with three children.

Associated Representatives:
Kelly M. Cassidy
Gregory Harris