PetersZoomChicago - To inform residents on various violence prevention initiatives, State Senator Robert Peters(D-Chicago) hosted a panel discussion with anti-violence advocates on the SAFE-T Act and the importance of community-centered solutions for violence prevention in Illinois Tuesday.

“We need public safety for all and not just the few.  Instead of reversing the progress that we’ve made before parts of this legislation has even had a chance to take effect, we need to think about those who are still left behind by the failing status quo,” said Peters. “I want to uplift the voices of advocates and empower them to help create real solutions to violence in our communities and not surrender to the political theater of the past.”

Before the implementation of the SAFE-T Act, the traditional criminal legal infrastructure put special need areas such as domestic violence, mental health and homelessness in the hands of traditional law enforcement, which has often lacked the training and approach to deal with these issues, particularly in a way that is responsive to the needs of the community. 

Many groups who advocate on behalf of domestic violence victims say more state funding is needed to meet an increase in demand for domestic violence resources as a result of the pandemic.

“We supported the SAFE-T ACT because it benefits survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking,” said Madeleine Behr of the Chicago Alliance Against Sexual Exploitation.“Right now, if a person has enough money, they can walk out of jail. The current system is a system rooted in racism and classism and decisions are often not made with the safety of the community or with survivors' interests in mind. After the SAFE-T Act takes effect, the voices of survivors will be listened to in the courts.”

“I lost my son to violence in 2017 and at the time I found there to be very few resources available to survivors and their families,” said Bertha Purnell of Mothers on a Mission28. “I started this organization to try to work to bring resources for survivors in my neighborhood and to help survivors heal from trauma.” 

Peters was joined by panelists from the Chicago Alliance Against Sexual Exploitation, Mothers On A Mission28, The Network: Advocating Against Domestic Violence and Crime Survivors For Safety and Justice.

To view a recording of the panel, visit here.

Category: Press Releases

021622CM0671Springfield- A measure to make the capitol complex more accessible for visitors with disabilities clears an important hurdle thanks to State Senator Robert Peters (D-Chicago).

“The Capitol grounds belong to all of the people, '' said Peters. “All people, regardless of their physical ability, should be able to freely move about the capitol and be able to navigate their way through our public spaces.” 

Senate Bill 0180 requires the Speaker of the House and the President of the Senate to each appoint an accessibility coordinator to work in consultation with the Architect of the Capitol to address accessibility needs for each chamber.

The measure also creates the General Assembly Accessibility Task Force, which will include members appointed by each legislative leader and a chair jointly appointed by the Speaker and the President. The appointees would include individuals who have a disability or advocates for people with disabilities. The task force shall examine issues concerning accessibility of the General Assembly to persons with a disability. The task force's recommendations would be due by Dec. 31, 2023 and allow the task force to continue to stand until Jan. 1, 2025.

“I am pleased that we are one step closer to addressing a critical lack of inclusion in the very center of democracy in this state,” Peters said. “I hope that after the task force completes its recommendations, that we are able to make our capitol grounds more accessible to all.”

The measure passed the Senate on Wednesday.

 

Category: Press Releases

Peters SB 0180Springfield - A measure to make the capitol complex more accessible for visitors with disabilities clears an important hurdle thanks to State Senator Robert Peters (D-Chicago).

“The Capitol grounds belong to all of the people,'' said Peters. “Everyone, regardless of ability, should be able to freely move about the Capitol and be able to navigate their way through our public spaces.” 

Senate Bill 0180 requires the Speaker of the House and the President of the Senate to each appoint an accessibility coordinator to work in consultation with the Architect of the Capitol to address accessibility needs for each chamber.

The measure also creates the General Assembly Accessibility Task Force, which will include members appointed by each legislative leader and a chair jointly appointed by the Speaker and the President. Other appointees would include individuals with a disability or advocates for people with disabilities. The task force shall examine issues concerning accessibility of the General Assembly to persons with a disability. The task force must submit a report of their recommendations to the General Assembly by Dec. 31, 2023.

“This task force will address a critical lack of inclusion in the very center of democracy in this state,” Peters said. “I hope that after the task force completes its recommendations, that we are able to make our capitol grounds more accessible to all.”

The measure passed the Senate Executive committee on Wednesday.

Category: Press Releases

peters vaccineSpringfield- Youth in the care of the Department of Children and Family Services are one step closer to receiving the financial resources they need to be ready for adulthood thanks to a measure championed by State Senator Robert Peters (D-Chicago).

“I’m pleased that we are one step closer to ensuring that the state will be proactive at helping youth in care build a strong future during their final years of care,” Peters said. “We need to do all we can to ensure that they have access to a financial head start before they have to live on their own.”

Senate Bill 3470 would require DCFS to save or invest a minimum percentage of a youth's benefits once they reach the age of 14. This will ensure that when DCFS no longer serves as the financial representative of the youth, they will have some money to help them  transition into a successful adult life.

The minimum percentages that DCFS will be required to invest are:

  • 40% for youth between the ages of 14-15
  • 80% for youth between the ages of 16-17
  • 100% for youth between the ages of 18-20

Senate Bill 3470 would also require the DCFS to take defined actions when applying for and managing certain federal benefits that the department receives on behalf of any youth in care.

“State services should help empower youth and give them strong support to enter our society,” Peters said. “We should not be sending young people out into the world without the resources they need to live independently, and we must ensure that they are able to make the transition into adult life.”

The measure passed the Senate on Wednesday. 

Category: Press Releases

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