holmes 041422SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Linda Holmes (D-Aurora) strongly supported the Illinois Senate Democrats’ package of initiatives aimed to support law enforcement officers and improve the state’s criminal justice system.

“Law enforcement officers risk their personal safety and lives to keep our families and neighbors safe,” Holmes said. “I’m proud to support a plan to offer additional protections and ensure they have the necessary tools to address rising crime rates.”

Among the measures Holmes supports are House Bill 4608, which updates guidelines for when officers are required to wear body cameras as well as allows grants for body cameras to cover storage of video data. Holmes added a waiver for the training requirements if an officer has completed an approved training program and firearms training.

House Bill 3893 lets investigators continue recording conversations for qualified sex and drug offences.

This package also includes legislation to address mental health concerns many law enforcement personnel experience from witnessing difficult situations in the line of duty. House Bill 1321 creates a fund to provide behavioral health services to first responders, making mental health care more accessible for the law enforcement community.

House Bill 3863 creates the Law Enforcement Recruitment and Retention Fund to support departments through the hiring and training processes and improve retention strategies.

“Our law enforcement officers stand up to protect us at great cost to their own safety,” Holmes said. “I’m grateful for this opportunity to stand up and advocate for their concerns and needs, and I’ve requested to be a chief cosponsor on these measures.”

With the support of the Illinois Sheriff’s Association, the Fraternal Order of Police Labor Council and the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police, Senator Holmes is pleased to see these bills pass the Senate and move to the governor’s desk for his consideration.