051923SC6537SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Robert Peters passed a measure Friday expanding the Day and Temporary Labor Services Act.

“I often hear unfortunate stories of temporary workers who were harmed by hazardous materials at their jobsite. Working in a safe and healthy environment is a human right,” said Peters (D-Chicago). “This measure increases safety and transparency for temporary workers while also instilling long overdue compensation for their work, which is often taken for granted.”

Under current law, the Day and Temporary Labor Services Act imposes stipulations for staffing agencies such as  providing transportation and safety equipment to workers, providing an itemized list of wages due to workers and maintaining records related to third party clients.

House Bill 2862 dictates that temporary laborers assigned to a third party client for more than 90 days will be paid no less than the rate of pay and equivalent benefits as the lowest paid hired employee of the client with the same level of seniority and performing the same or substantially similar work.

The measure also requires agencies to notify laborers that the assigned workplace is where a strike, lockout, or other labor trouble exists and that the laborers have a right to refuse the workplace assignment.

“Expanding the Day and Temporary Labor Services Act is critical to addressing the unacceptable and rising workplace difficulties Black and Brown workers face,” Peters said. “Illinois is a pro-labor state that takes workplace safety and equitable pay seriously. We have proven that again today by passing this bill that not only sets the bar nationally for temporary worker protections, but provides regulators with the tools they need to ensure industry-wide compliance with the law. I would like to thank the Chicago Workers Collaborative, the Illinois AFL-CIO and State Representative Edgar Gonzalez for their hard work and determination to increase safety for temporary workers.”

House Bill 2862 passed the House Friday.

Category: Press Releases

051923CM0158SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation may soon be unable to require criminal background information from certain applicants for licensure, thanks to a measure carried by State Senator Robert Peters.

“Requiring criminal background information when it can’t be used against an applicant for licensure opens the floodgates for those with prior justice system involvement to experience discrimination based on the negative biases associated with a criminal record,” said Peters (D-Chicago). “Individuals with prior justice system involvement should be able to move on with their lives, instead of being defined by past mistakes.”

Under current law, the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation may consider mitigating factors and evidence of rehabilitation contained in an applicant's record after finding that the applicant for a license, certificate, or registration was previously convicted of a felony or misdemeanor.

House Bill 2826 prohibits inquiry into criminal history by IDFPR if the licensing statute states that criminal history cannot be used against an applicant. With this new prohibition, IDFPR would only need to perform a mitigating factor analysis in limited circumstances.

“People are more than their past mistakes,” Peters said. “If knowing a person’s criminal history won’t impact their licensing application, then this question only serves as a barrier.”

House Bill 2826 passed the Senate Friday.

Category: Press Releases

051823CM0471SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation may soon be required to collect and publish an annual report on the racial and ethnic makeup of applicants denied licensure, thanks to a measure sponsored by State Senator Robert Peters that passed the Senate on Friday.

“People of color often choose to start their own businesses as a means of upward financial and social mobility,” said Peters (D-Chicago). “Insuring they are effectively supported while seeking licensure will prevent the denial of applications and lay the groundwork for these businesses to be successful.”

Under current law, IDFPR doesn't collect this type of data in licensure applications. Peters’ measure would require the Department to request and report information regarding applicants’ ethnicity, race, sex and disability.

“Applying for licensing can be a complicated process,” Peters said. “Transparency of the racial and ethnic makeup of those who took appropriate steps to seek licensure but were denied is needed to ensure there isn’t a pattern of denials. If a pattern of denials concerning the racial and ethnic makeup of applicants is found, I look forward to working with the Department to eliminate the issue.”

House Bill 1612 passed the Senate Friday.

Category: Press Releases

051123CM0479SPRINGFIELD – In response to the rapid development of Artificial Intelligence, State Senator Robert Peters passed a measure to create the Generative AI and Natural Language Processing Task Force.

“Artificial intelligence is a relatively new concept, but it is quickly evolving,” said Peters (D-Chicago). “Tracking these advancements keeps Illinois in a position to make smart and proactive decisions to protect Illinoisans.”

Generative AI is a type of artificial intelligence technology that can produce various types of content including text, imagery, audio and synthetic data. The simplicity of its user interfaces for creating high-quality multimedia in a matter of seconds has contributed to its recent rise in popularity.

Natural Language Processing is the ability of a computer program to understand human language as it is spoken and written. This helps machines process and understand human language so they can automatically perform repetitive tasks.

The task force created by House Bill 3563 will consist of 20 members and will hold at least five public meetings in Chicago, Springfield, Metro East, Quad Cities and Southern Illinois.

“Artificial intelligence is undoubtedly an asset that could make Illinois a leader in the emerging technology sector,” Peters said. “This measure explores the possibilities of artificial intelligence while also initiating measures meant to preserve the safety of all Illinoisans.”

House Bill 3563 passed the Senate Thursday.

Category: Press Releases

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