Hutchinson honored with YMCA Legislative Champion AwardSPRINGFIELD – State Senator Toi Hutchinson (D – Chicago Heights) was honored with the 2016 Legislative Champion Award from the Illinois State Alliance of YMCAs this morning at an event in Springfield.

“I am humbled to be receiving the 2016 Legislative Champion Award from an organization dedicated to the issues facing the children of Illinois,” Hutchinson said. “YMCAs serve our communities by providing vital child care programs, after-school services and athletic opportunities to thousands of children. At a time of drastic cuts to our social safety net, the work done by YMCAs is more important than ever.”

The Illinois State Alliance of YMCAs represents 46 centers throughout the state, serving more than one million children and adults in more than 120 communities.

“We are so fortunate to have a legislator like Senator Hutchinson fighting for our state's children and families,” DaWana Williamson with the YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago said. “Her unrelenting leadership and advocacy for quality and accessible youth programs has been instrumental in making sure organizations like the YMCA are able to partner with schools, juvenile detention facilities, government agencies and churches to reach and serve our state's most at-risk youth.”

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Hutchinson supports plan to fund Governors State University, community collegesSPRINGFIELD – Illinois’ public universities and community colleges have not received state funding since last year, causing some to issue layoff notices and others to warn of impending cuts to vital educational programs and services. That would change under a proposal that passed the Illinois Senate today supported by State Senator Toi Hutchinson (D – Chicago Heights).  

“Last week, I stood with hundreds of Governors State University students who came out in support of funding for MAP grants and higher educational facilities,” Hutchinson said. “Those students currently have no assurance that they will be able to come back to school next semester. For a state to have a bright economic future full of talented and skilled workers, it must invest in higher education.”

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Senate passes key collective bargaining measureSPRINGFIELD – The Senate took action today on a key collective bargaining measure, passing a proposal that would mandate arbitration and prohibit strikes and lockouts if an agreement cannot be reached between the governor and Illinois’ largest public-sector union.

State Senator Toi Hutchinson (D – Chicago Heights), a co-sponsor of the proposal, released the following statement after voting in favor of the measure:

“The plan I supported today establishes guidelines for compromise – the same guidelines used by unions in the private sector when an agreement cannot be reached. Illinois is in the midst of a historic budget impasse that is causing our social safety net to fall apart before our eyes. The last thing this state needs is a labor stoppage for the thousands of workers who keep Illinois going.”

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Hutchinson supports MAP veto overrideSPRINGFIELD – A funding proposal for the Monetary Assistance Program (MAP) is headed to the House after the Senate voted today to override Governor Rauner’s veto of the plan.

State Senator Toi Hutchinson (D – Chicago Heights), a co-sponsor of the MAP funding proposal, released the following statement after voting in favor of overriding Governor Rauner’s veto:   
 
“Throughout this entire budget impasse, innocent bystanders have been on the front lines, bearing the brunt of cuts and delays in state funding. MAP recipients, through no fault of their own, have been among the hardest hit. As a former MAP and Pell grant recipient, I know just how hard it can be to cobble together enough resources to get through a semester. I would not be who I am today or where I am today without these grants.

“I urge my House colleagues to make our students a priority and support MAP funding. We have no future in Illinois if we do not invest in education.”

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