Legislation to provide grant money and immunity

prison-162885 640RSPRINGFIELD – The fight against human trafficking in Illinois may be receiving a huge boost in the form of legislation that unanimously passed the State Senate today. Proposed by Senator Toi Hutchinson (D – Chicago Heights), the Specialized Services for Survivors of Human Trafficking fund would provide grants for essential needs associated with human trafficking and prostitution, while providing that minors can no longer be charged with solicitation of a sex act.

“Those who have been enslaved by sex traffickers should be lawfully protected and given every opportunity to heal and move forward with their lives,” Sen. Hutchinson said.

The measure is funded from fees and forfeitures accrued from offenders convicted of human trafficking or prostitution crimes. Priority services administered in consultation with expert advocates, including emergency housing and drop-in centers.

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“How our schools discipline our children is one of the most significant predictors of our state’s future.” - State Senator Toi Hutchinson (D - Chicago Heights)

4-2-ReportCardRSPRINGFIELD – Has your child been suspended? Expelled? Arrested? Do a large number of students at your child’s school receive severe disciplinary action that keeps them out of the classroom on a consistent basis? According to State Senator Toi Hutchinson (D – Chicago Heights), it is high time our state started taking solutions-oriented steps to keep our kids in school, while staying out of trouble.

“How our schools discipline our children is one of the most signification predictors of our state’s future,” said Sen. Hutchinson.

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032614 js 1139csRSPRINGFIELD  - In response to the budget plan announced today by Governor Quinn, Revenue Committee Chairperson Toi Hutchinson (D – Chicago Heights) released a statement concentrating on the need for a new vision looking past the tired politics of the budget process and onto whom it truly affects in real terms.

“If our goal as a state and as a nation is to move forward in a substantive and responsible manner, then our budget in Illinois has to reflect this aspiration,” said Senator Hutchinson. “The fate of future generations should not be linked to the fate of today’s ideological battles over budgetary constraints, but to the quality of the education that our state’s budget can grant them access to. The same stymied political maneuverings of the past are not going to bear new fruit for us now and on into the future. We need a responsible budget that will adequately protect schools, jobs, and other critical services that the people require.

The governor’s worst-case budget plan leaves Illinois with 20% budget cuts across the board for all state agencies, forcing thousands of Illinoisans onto the unemployment line. This scenario lurks as the scheduled fall in the tax rate is approaching at the end of the year. After years of budget cuts, Sen. Hutchinson believes we need responsible solutions free of lay-offs and reductions to critical state services in order to properly and safely move forward.

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022614 js 0245RSPRINGFIELD – In response to the possible budget cuts announced today by Illinois state agency directors, Revenue Committee Chairperson Toi Hutchinson (D – Chicago Heights) released a statement focused on the need for action and consequences of failing to responsibly balance the budget for FY 2015.

“Our state cannot afford for its legislature to backtrack on so much progress by crippling funding for vital state services,” said Sen. Hutchinson. “If we see these cuts go through, children would live without shelter, proper nutrition or educational support. Due to laboratory testing cutbacks, rape kits would go untested, robbing women and men of the justice they deserve. Justice cannot afford a hiatus. Thousands of jobs lost and millions of dollars in reductions is not going to cut it. No more excuses. We need responsible solutions.”

The Department of Human Services, Department of Public Health and the Department of Veterans’ Affairs would see a combined 3,500 staff laid off and up to $676 million in reductions, while all agencies across the board would see a 20% reduction in funds.

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Springfield Office:
121C Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706

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222 Vollmer Road. Suite 2C
Chicago Heights, IL 60411


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