Workers Compensation

  • Governor signs Holmes’ major labor and unemployment reforms into law

    holmes 031220SPRINGFIELD — Assistant Majority Leader Linda Holmes (D-Aurora) is encouraged that Gov. JB Pritzker signed House Bill 2455 this afternoon, allowing important changes to labor and unemployment laws to take immediate effect as workers continue to be shaken by COVID-19’s  toll on jobs and the economy.

    Holmes sponsored the measure passed by the General Assembly during the shortened Special Session at the Capitol in May. It will ensure first responders and essential workers have recourse if they contract COVID-19 at work and their employers failed to implement proper health and safety guidelines and requires employers to take this seriously.

    “This is for our essential workers who may not have sick time benefits but have had COVID-19 related to their jobs, in some cases due to lack of care taken by employers,” Holmes said. “We’ve moved quickly to address this problem and I’m pleased we did it cooperatively with business and labor involved in the solutions.”

    HB2455 also extends unemployment benefits and waives the waiting times associated with receiving benefits.

    “Millions are now unemployed through no fault of their own, and we must provide economic relief,” Holmes said. “I know the unemployment process has been frustrating for many -- including those who have unresolved issues with penalty weeks. Yet we’ve seen greater and greater capacity for filing for unemployment and significant state investment in improving these services.”

    This legislation also provides workers’ compensation benefits for Chicago first responders’ families in the event their loved one dies from COVID-19 in the line of duty, a benefit others in the state already have.

  • The Majority Report 05/26/20 - Senate passes budget, COVID-19 relief measures, among other items


    Senate approves budget prioritizing COVID-19 relief

    Sen. President Don HarmonSPRINGFIELD — Responding to the COVID-19 pandemic and focusing on preserving vital services, the Illinois Senate passed a budget that prioritizes public health and safety.

    In order to protect people’s health, the budget provides additional funding to both the state’s health department and local health departments. It also expands programs that help seniors and people with disabilities remain in their homes, keeping them out of long-term care facilities that have been hit disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.

    Read more.



    Murphy leads local government COVID-19 recovery plan

    Sen. Laura MurphySPRINGFIELD — To help guide local governments through the COVID-19 recovery process, State Senator Laura Murphy (D-Des Plaines) sponsored a package of legislation to give municipalities the means to address pandemic-related challenges.

    “Especially now, local governments are keeping our communities afloat by managing our regional health departments and providing financial, housing and meal assistance to struggling Illinoisans,” said Murphy. “I hope this legislation can help them continue to provide much-needed services as we look to recover from this pandemic.”

    Read more.




    Morrison: Vote by mail is essential for voter safety

    Sen. Julie A. MorrisonSPRINGFIELD — Thanks to efforts from State Senator Julie Morrison, Illinoisans will have a more accessible way to cast their ballots from the safety of their homes. During the COVID-19 pandemic, standing in line to vote isn’t safe for many, specifically older populations and those at higher health risks.

    “COVID-19 has made congregating in small and enclosed spaces more dangerous,” Morrison said. “Long lines to get to the ballot box would require people to choose between their health and their right to vote.”

    Read more.



    Holmes' labor agreement on workplace safety and workers’ compensation passes Senate

    Sen. Linda HolmesSPRINGFIELD — To protect essential workers and incentivize employers to provide the best protective measures possible in the workplace during the pandemic, State Senator Linda Holmes (D-Aurora) led the effort to pass a comprehensive labor and workers’ compensation plan out of the Illinois Senate Thursday.

    “This is an agreement between business and labor that ensures better protections for employees and clear, consistent guidelines to ensure employers know how to operate safely,” Holmes said. “I’m grateful for the spirit of cooperation that allowed us to work quickly and decisively to pass this plan.”

    Read more.


    Koehler works to provide financial relief for property owners

    Sen. Dave KoehlerSPRINGFIELD — To provide much needed flexibility and relief as businesses and counties begin to reopen, State Senator Dave Koehler (D-Peoria) sponsored legislation that would give property owners the means to continue meeting the challenges presented by COVID-19.

    "I led the Senate’s economic revitalization working group with one goal in mind. We had to provide people with real, tangible solutions to the enormous challenges brought on by the pandemic,” Koehler said. “Implementing property tax relief measures and extending payment deadlines is where we have to start as we begin to work toward the recovery of our local economies.”

    Read more.





    Senator Rachelle Crowe, Glen Carbon: Crowe applauds suspension of proposed rule to penalize businesses | Advantage News

    Senator Sara Feigenholtz, Chicago: Both chambers pass cocktails-to-go measure | Herald & Review

    Senator Emil Jones III, Chicago: Illinois Senate OKs graduated tax language for ballot | Journal Gazette & Times-Courier


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  • Castro pleased with passage of COVID-19 protections for first responders

    castro floor2 052120SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Cristina Castro and her colleagues in the Illinois Senate passed a bill Thursday that contained protections for first responders who are affected by COVID-19 as a result of their duties.

    “Now more than ever, the first responders and front-line workers who are risking their lives to keep us safe during a pandemic deserve our undying thanks and gratitude,” Castro said. “The very least we can do as a legislature is provide these brave men and women with protections since they are risking their lives every single day.”

    The legislation provides expanded worker’s compensation protection for COVID-19 first-responders and front-line workers, including people employed as a police officer, firefighter, EMT or paramedic, health care provider (including nursing home, rehabilitation and homecare workers), corrections officer, or anyone employed as an essential worker.

    “No one deserves to have their lives ruined as a result of contracting COVID-19, and especially not people who have no choice but to be exposed to it,” Castro said.

    The first-responder protections were part of House Bill 2455, a labor protection package that also addressed issues with unemployment insurance. The bill passed the Senate with bipartisan support, and will be sent back to the House of Representatives for a final vote.

  • Holmes’ labor agreement on workplace safety and workers’ compensation passes Senate

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  • Raoul advances reform of workers’ compensation program

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  • Raoul, Biss pass workers’ comp reforms to streamline system, secure savings

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