On Tuesday, April 24, over 300 people of faith from CRS member congregations converged on Springfield capitol building for the Community Renewal Society Day of Faith in Action, held annually on the third tuesday after Easter. Community leaders rallied outside the capitol then split into lobbying teams. These teams met with...
more than 40 elected officials. CRS leaders won five new co-sponsors for HB 5723, the Illinois Sealing Bill, and collected more than a dozen legislators' signatures on a letter to Governor Quinn in support of CRS' work to protect and expand the Rental Housing Support Program Fund. The day was finished with a high-spirited prayer vigil in the capitol rotunda that filled the entire building with the sound of prayer and song!
There is still work to do! We still want to add more Representatives as co-sponsors of HB 5723, so check if your legislator is already a co-sponsor and if they are not, call them and ask them to sign on.
Some More Facts About HB5723
- Every year more than 35,000 people return home from the Illinois Department of Corrections. Currently, more than 50% return to prison within 3 years.
- Numerous studies have found that ex-offenders who find employment are far less likely to return to prison than those who do not.
- It costs Illinois between $20,000 and $60,000 to incarcerate one person for one year.
- HB5723 would only apply to non-violent felony records and those records could only be sealed four years after the person completed their sentence.
- Law enforcement, courts, and government agencies still have access to sealed records.
For more information about HB 5723 and the CRS FORCE (Fighting to Overcome Records and Create Equality) Project, contact Eddie Bocanegra at (312) 673-3886 or firstname.lastname@example.org