The Illinois General Assembly passed several bills to reform the Cook County Criminal Justice System. These victories build on our efforts to decrease the Cook County Jail population and divert the savings into community-based programs.
The Illinois General Assembly took the first step in implementing major police reforms. The police reform omnibus bill includes some of our priorities to create policy guidelines for police body-worn cameras and end stop and frisk discriminatory practices.
Police body-worn cameras can be tools for better police supervision and civilian oversight. Through this legislation, Illinois becomes the first state in the nation to create a single state standard for police body-worn camera programs.
The Illinois General Assembly ended the spring legislative session without resolving Illinois’ FY16 budget crisis. Vital community programs and services face devastating cuts, starting July 1, if additional revenue is not approved.
There’s good news from Springfield! Thanks to 18 months of hard work by FORCE leaders and our criminal justice coalition partners, a new bill is moving. SB 42 House Amendment 1 increases health care job opportunities for people with records. It passed out of the Health Care Licensing Committee yesterday, Monday, May 18, 2015.
“I had worked at a nursing home for 14 years,” LaKesia testified. “I had good reviews, and the residents liked me. But, none of that mattered when a new owner took over. He fired me because of my background. I applied for a waiver, but my job is already gone.”
FORCE members and community leaders from partner organizations, working with a wide coalition of criminal justice advocates, led the campaign that resulted in the passage of HB 494 in the Illinois House of Representatives on April 23.