SPRINGFIELD – A measure sponsored by State Senator Steve Stadelman (D-Rockford) that would make civil no contact orders permanent for sexual assault survivors whose assailants are criminally convicted of sexual assault passed the Illinois General Assembly on Monday.

“People who’ve been through a sexual assault will live with that trauma for the rest of their lives,” Stadelman said. “I believe it’s our responsibly to help ease their burdens and not make them relive that trauma by forcing them to return to court year after year.”

Currently, under Illinois state law, sexual assault survivors are forced to see their assailants in court every two years to renew their no contact orders.

“These no contact orders are based on convictions. Convictions don’t change over time,” Stadelman said. “Survivors deserve the right to feel safe in their daily lives without having to continually go to court.”

Stadelman worked on the measure with the City of Rockford’s Office of Domestic Violence Prevention. Additionally, the city worked with Rockford Sexual Assault Counseling, which suggested the lifetime order of protection. Similar protections are already in place in Illinois for stalking victims.

House Bill 734 now heads to the governor’s desk for further consideration.