Sen. Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford

SPRINGFIELD – To continue her efforts to dismantle the systemic racism in Illinois, Senate Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood) passed legislation that would remove derogatory words from Illinois law that describe Black people as “Negro” or “Haitian.” 

“In this era of racial reckoning and righting the wrongs of our predecessors, it’s imperative that we cleanse Illinois law of old, offensive racial terms,” Lightford said. “We are working to undo years of oppression and currently fighting racial injustice.” 

House Bill 3217 reconstructs several state laws by deleting the use of the words “Haitian” or “Negro,” replacing them with “Black” or “African American.” 

HB 3217 passed the Senate floor and now heads to the governor for final approval.