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Martinez law works to protect students from sexual abuse

Asst. Majority Leader Iris Y. MartinezSPRINGFIELD — A new law sponsored by Assistant Majority Leader Iris Y. Martinez (D-Chicago) will overhaul the manner in which sexual assault investigations involving students are conducted.

Martinez passed the legislation out of the Senate this year as a bipartisan effort to address the issue of educator misconduct in classrooms across the state.

“The importance of protecting our children is an issue we can all agree on, no matter our political party,” Martinez said. “The report released last year was shocking, and I am thankful to my colleagues on both sides of the aisle for coming together to work on a solution. Students should be able to feel safe at school.”

Martinez law works to prevent suicide among college students

collegestudent 080819SPRINGFIELD — Legislation sponsored by Assistant Majority Leader Iris Y. Martinez (D-Chicago) addressing the growing concern of mental illness and suicide on college campuses became law today.

Martinez’s law will require public colleges and universities to make information available to students on all mental health and suicide prevention resources provided by the university.

“We are becoming more aware of the struggles college students are facing,” Martinez said. “They need to be able to readily access help for mental health issues they may be dealing with.”

Diagnoses and treatment of mental health conditions among college students are on the rise, and suicide is the second-leading cause of death among college students.

House Bill 3404 takes effect Jan. 1, 2020. 

Martinez law works to place teachers in hard-to-staff schools

martinez 031319SPRINGFIELD — Assistant Majority Leader Iris Y. Martinez’s measure expanding the ability of schools and future teachers to participate in the Grow Your Own Teacher program became law today.

The Grow Your Own Teacher initiative is a program designed to train people to become teachers in hard-to-staff schools.

“Illinois is dealing with a teacher shortage, so we need to do all that we can to place dedicated teachers in schools,” Martinez (D-Chicago) said. “We especially must work to ensure students at schools that are traditionally hard to staff, like those in low-incomes areas, have the same access to quality education as anyone else.”

The new law will expand the definition of "eligible school" and "hard-to-staff" schools for the initiative to include early childhood programs in which no less than 40 percent of the children it serves are receiving subsidized care under the Department of Human Services' Child Care Assistance Program.

It will also extend eligibility for participation in the initiative to high school students enrolled in a dual credit course at a participating institution of higher education.

House Bill 35 is effective immediately.

Martinez condemns Puerto Rico governor’s remarks

martinez 022019SPRINGFIELD — Assistant Majority Leader Iris Y. Martinez (D-Chicago) released the following statement today as thousands continue to protest Puerto Rico’s governor after leaked text messages uncovered crude, sexist and homophobic remarks made by him and others:

“I’m truly disappointed in the disparaging remarks made by Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello and his allies towards females, members of the LGBTQ community and our beloved island, among other things.

Senator Iris Y. Martinez

Assistant Majority Leader Iris Y. Martinez

Assistant Majority Leader
20th District

Years served:
2003 - Present
 
Committee assignments: Commerce and Economic Development; Education; Energy and Public Utilities; Executive; Government Accountability/Pensions (Vice-Chairperson); Transportation; Subcommittee on Gov. Operations; Pension Investments Special Com. On (Co-Chairperson); Revenue (Vice-Chairperson).

Biography: Born Feb. 25, 1956, in Chicago; earned her bachelor's degree in public policy and administration from Northeastern Illinois University in 2009; elected president of the National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators. She is also the Illinois Legislative Latino Caucus Co-Chair; has one daughter.

Associated Representatives:
Jaime M. Andrade, Jr.
Will Guzzardi