Legislative & Advocacy Efforts

The Illinois African American Family Commission (IAAFC) was created in October 1994 by Executive Order, and the Illinois African American Family Commission Act (20 ILCS 3903) was established in Illinois state statute on August 5, 2004, by Public Act 93-867. The Commission subsequently successfully worked with members of the Illinois General Assembly to update the Commission’s statute during the Spring 2014 session, which included codifying that part of the Commission’s purpose is to “advise the Governor and General Assembly, as well as work directly with State agencies, to improve and expand existing policies, services, programs, and opportunities for African-American families.” The statute was further updated to indicate this purpose is to be achieved in part by “monitoring and commenting on existing and proposed legislation and programs designed to address the needs of African–Americans in Illinois.” As a result, during the Spring 2015 Legislative Session, the Commission’s legislative and policy team monitored, discussed and engaged legislation as it was introduced and/or amended to determine if the potential law change would have an impact on African Americans living in Illinois.

 

 

Spring 2015 Legislation that IAAFC took Positions on

Due to well over 6,000 pieces of legislation being introduced during the Spring 2015 session, the IAAFC monitored thousands of pieces of legislation moving through the legislative process this past Spring.   These bills contained pending law changes in every arena ranging from criminal code reform, to healthcare, education, social services, economics, etc., all with a potential impact on the lives of African Americans. The Illinois African American Family Commission took positions of either “Support” or “Oppose” on numerous pieces of legislation to formally indicate the potential impact of those bills on the African American community. Please click HERE for a report outlining bills the Commission filed positions on during the Spring 2015 legislative session.

*Many of these bills did not make it completely through the legislative process. They are therefore “dead,” but are still included for informational purposes. The “current status” section of the report will indicate if a bill actually passed both chambers and/or has been signed into law by the Governor.

**Please note that it may take up to 20 seconds for the report to load in your web browser.

 

2015 Bills that Governor Has Taken Action On

Click HERE to view a live report on bills passed by the Illinois General Assembly the Governor has subsequently taken action on by either being signed into law or vetoed.

** Please note that it may take up to 20 seconds or longer for the report to load in your web browser.

 

Recent IAAFC Legislative Initiatives

Spring 2015

  • The Commission’s main legislative initiative during the 2015 Spring Session was SB 1798. SB 1798 as introduced by Sen. Donne Trotter  would have required a Racial Impact Statement to be filed by the Department of Corrections on any piece of legislation creating or enhancing a criminal penalty. SB 1798 was amended in the Senate to incorporate language into existing statute (as opposed to creating an entirely new section), while maintaining the integrity of the original intent of the bill. While SB 1798 passed the Senate with a vote of 56-0, and garnered the support of 18 sponsors in the House of Representatives, it was never released from the House Rules committee. Therefore SB1798 did not complete the remaining required legislative process to become law.

Click HERE for a Fact Sheet on SB 1798.

 

 

Spring 2014

  • The Commission worked with Sen. Mattie Hunter and Rep. Ken Dunkin as the chief sponsors in Senate and the House in amending SB 121 to become a legislative initiative with the purpose of updating the Illinois African-American Family Commission Act. SB 121, now Public Act 98-0693, updated the statute to contain current data and statistics relative to the status of African Americans’ in the areas of education, employment, income, and health. This legislation also clarified and codified the intended mission and role of the IAAFC by making a few additions to the statute in the area of its purpose and objectives.