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Archive for July 25th, 2016

Black Activist says “Gun Control is not the Answer”

Posted by Admin On July - 25 - 2016 Comments Off on Black Activist says “Gun Control is not the Answer”
With 300 million guns already in the U.S., gun control is not the answer – we need mindst control

By Orrin “Checkmate” Hudson, Founder of Be Someone Inc.
Orrin Hudson
Nationwide (BlackNews.com) — According to the U.S. government itself, there are an estimated 300 million guns in the United States. So is gun control the real answer to the violence taking place today? Of course not! The answer lies not in the weapon, but in the mindset of the person. What goes in your head comes out. And make no mistake about it, our young people are especially vulnerable.So, what can we do? Plenty! For one, we need to monitor the types of music that kids are listening to. Garbage in, garbage out. Faith comes by hearing, and hearing what are you listening to. Socrates said, “An unexamined life is not worth living.” He also said, “Know thyself.”As humans interact, we hope they see each other as equals and wish no harm on anyone. This is the mindset that would lead to peace. Unfortunately, that is not being properly taught to our children. Hope has no place in this equation. We must take action.Firearms are not killing people; it is the people who want to do bad things who are killing. There are criminals on our streets. We are reminded of that every day, but we have a strong survival instinct and we will act as needed to save our lives and the lives of our loved ones. If individuals are put in a situation where they are threatened and cornered, feeling they must do harm or be harmed, they will defend themselves. As a result, many law abiding citizens have armed themselves.Gun control cannot and will not change anything until the mindset has been changed for the better. Let us strive to teach and promote peace and love, especially to our children who are our future! Let’s instill these traits into them now before we destroy ourselves. This is no easy task but we must get to work before there is more needless loss of life from the violence that surrounds us.

The daily headlines remind us of the violence that is threatening to destroy our communities. Removal of weapons does not deter this, for time and again we have seen the mind create another weapon as an alternative. Restrictions on any weapon only allow alternative weapons to be developed into more efficient killing means, thus the harm does not end, it only changes. If I am a violent person, I will use whatever means available to me to satisfy my violent nature. If a gun is available, yes I will use it. I also can use a baseball bat, a knife, a hammer or a vehicle. If no other weapon is available, I will use my hands.

Thus, we must understand putting stress on any system will increase the chances of violence. How do we change that? There is only one way and that comes with an early life mindset change. If a person is taught violence or is associated with violence and killing at an early age, chances are that person will grow up to be violent. On the other hand, if a person is taught love, peace and mutual respect from the beginning, that person will likewise follow his early childhood teachings and grow into a kind, peace-loving, respectful, nonviolent adult.

A child’s mind is like a computer; What goes in their mind stays there. Some learn to work around the violence they experience and become productive members of society but the chances are great that many more won’t, and may become burdens on society. Be mindful of what your child is being taught, especially in school and in their various environments!

The only way to reduce violence is to reach every individual with the knowledge that violence is not the answer. We must change the culture of violence before it destroys us and steals our children’s futures. It’s time to get to work!

I recently held a community training event in Atlanta in partnership with the DeKalb County Police Dept that fostered unity, peace and love between the local police and the residents. It was such a huge success that I’m planning to take it nationwide to help do the same in other cities. If you want me to come to your city, please get in contact with my organization.

Orrin Hudson is the founder of Be Someone Inc., a nationwide life-changing program that uses the game of chess to teach that for every choice we have in life there is a relating consequence. He has taught more than 50,000 children that they can be a productive, contributing, successful citizen by making the right moves in their the lives. Call (770) 465-6445 or visit www.BeSomeone.org to learn more about Hudson and his program.

Photo Caption: Orrin Hudson poses with a Dekalb County police officer during a community event that he hosted on July 2nd.

Munger Unveils Openbook Portal to Help Taxpayers Follow the Money

Posted by Admin On July - 25 - 2016 Comments Off on Munger Unveils Openbook Portal to Help Taxpayers Follow the Money

Comptroller launches latest transparency initiative

 

Illinois Comptroller Leslie Geissler Munger unveiled her Office’s latest transparency website, OpenBook, which allows Illinoisans to use a “google-like” feature to easily compare state contracts with campaign contributions. To access OpenBook, visit openbook.illinoiscomptroller.gov.

By combining information from the Comptroller’s accounting system with information collected by the Illinois State Board of Elections, residents are able to enter the name of an organization that does business with the State of Illinois and look at the political contributions that entity or its employees have made.

The site’s special features include:

  • A “Search System” that gives users easy access to the data by allowing them to begin searching with what they know.
  • A “Mobile Friendly Interface” that allows taxpayers to access OpenBook on-the-go from their smartphones and tablets, in addition to desktop.
  • “Tutorial Videos” that allow constituents to follow along for an in-depth explanation of the site’s functions.

“I am excited to make this announcement because I believe that government should be an open book that provides a full accounting for public dollars.” Munger said. “This site is a true portal of transparency for state government, where every dollar donated to a campaign is recorded and can be traced back to any state contract awarded.”

Munger has prioritized technology advancements in the Comptroller’s Office to improve efficiency, lower costs, and increase transparency for taxpayers.  In addition to OpenBook, she has updated the Office’s website, illinoiscomptroller.gov, enhanced the state and local government financial records on The Ledger and The Warehouse, launched Fiscal Focus, a financial information blog, and maintained a toll-free hotline available to residents with questions about the budget or state government.

 

NAACP Statement on Candidates’ Response to the NAACP Pledge to Protect and Preserve Our Lives

Posted by Admin On July - 25 - 2016 Comments Off on NAACP Statement on Candidates’ Response to the NAACP Pledge to Protect and Preserve Our Lives

BALTIMORE, MD — NAACP President and CEO Cornell William Brooks issued the following statement after the NAACP Convention and RNC Convention in Ohio this week:

“Amidst both ongoing police–involved shootings in our streets and the recent slaying of police officers in the line of duty, the NAACP has called upon presidential candidates, other candidates and officeholders to take our Pledge to Protect and Preserve Our Lives. This five-point pledge calls upon candidates for the highest office in the land to take affirmative steps within 100 days of assuming office to reduce and eliminate unlawful police violence against civilians.

“Having declined to speak at the NAACP’s 107th Annual Convention, Mr. Trump has also declined to speak so much as a whisper of substance on this issue of concern to the millions of supporters and members of the NAACP – before and during the Republican National Convention.  We are calling upon Mr. Trump to formally accept the Pledge and describe his undergirding policy positions in depth and detail. To the best of our knowledge and research, his campaign has yet to detail those positions.

“A few days ago, the presumptive Democratic Party nominee, Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton, addressed the NAACP’s 107th Annual Convention in Cincinnati. Secretary Clinton substantively addressed the Pledge, as well as pledging to take action from day one upon assuming office. She has not as yet formally accepted the Protect and Preserve Our Lives Pledge. We call upon her to do so.

“With one horrific video after another, one hashtag tragedy after another, and at least 533 deaths at the hands of the police thus far this year, it’s long past time for those seeking our vote to take the NAACP’s Pledge to Protect and Preserve Our Lives. To ignore this pledge is to ignore police-perpetuated violence and to turn a blind eye to the street realities of 2016. No presidential candidate can credibly run and not take the pledge. No president can credibly govern without honoring the pledge.

“As a nonpartisan organization, the NAACP will neither offer a coronation nor a pass to any presidential candidate. You have to consistently show up and speak up between now and November.”

The NAACP Protect and Preserve Our Lives Pledge:
The NAACP is asking candidates in the November 8 election to partner with us in changing policing in our communities by taking the following pledge:
“In the first 100 days of my term, I commit to working with the White House, executive agencies and Congress to implement the following reforms via regulation, legislation, or executive order:

(1) Cut off all federal funding to law enforcement agencies that have been found to undertake a pattern or practice of discrimination. This funding restriction should continue until these agencies are in compliance with constitutional standards.

(2) Provide the United States Department of Justice subpoena power so that it can require the release of internal documents from local law enforcement agencies under investigation for discrimination.

(3) Create regulations that give detailed guidance to local law enforcement agencies about the data required to comply with the Death in Custody Reporting Act. These regulations should make clear that unless there are compelling reasons for an exception, the Act’s penalties on federal funding for non-reporting will be imposed.

(4) Create a federal code of conduct to provide local law enforcement agencies minimum standards on the use of force.

(5) Establish a federal independent review board to investigate police shootings of unarmed individuals.”

Extreme Heat Could Lead to Pavement Failures

Posted by Admin On July - 25 - 2016 Comments Off on Extreme Heat Could Lead to Pavement Failures

IDOT will be monitoring roads for repairs, traffic stoppages possible during heat wave

SPRINGFIELD, IL – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) is urging motorists to be on the alert for the possibility of pavement buckling on roads throughout the state in the next few days due to the recent rainfall and extreme heat in the forecast.

The combination of very high temperatures and precipitation can lead to pavement expanding and ultimately buckling or blowing out, causing uneven driving surfaces in some areas. As long as the heat and humidity persists, IDOT will be monitoring the situation, with crews available to make repairs as quickly as possible if they are needed.

Motorists should be aware of slowing traffic and be prepared to move over for maintenance workers and other emergency personnel.

In addition, with the extreme heat, you are encouraged to carry drinking water with you when you travel. Getting stranded could be dangerous and dehydration can happen quickly in these conditions without proper hydration.

President Obama Statement on Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s Resignation

Posted by Admin On July - 25 - 2016 Comments Off on President Obama Statement on Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s Resignation

President Barack Obama:

 

For the last eight years, Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz has had my back.  This afternoon, I called her to let her know that I am grateful.  Her leadership of the DNC has meant that we had someone who brought Democrats together not just for my re-election campaign, but for accomplishing the shared goals we have had for our country.  Her critical role in supporting our economic recovery, our fights for social and civil justice and providing health care for all Americans will be a hallmark of her tenure as Party Chair.  Her fundraising and organizing skills were matched only by her passion, her commitment and her warmth.  And no one works harder for her constituents in Congress than Debbie Wasserman Schultz. Michelle and I are grateful for her efforts, we know she will continue to serve our country as a member of Congress from Florida and she will always be our dear friend.

Piccolo Theatre Announces Its 2016/2017 Season

Posted by Admin On July - 25 - 2016 Comments Off on Piccolo Theatre Announces Its 2016/2017 Season

EVANSTON – Piccolo Theatre presents its 2016-2017 Season beginning this October, featuring two women playwrights, three women directors, four full-length productions, and introducing a new staged reading series of six new plays throughout the year.  Piccolo is excited to engage both established and new audiences producing two productions in the Piven Theatre Workshop space, at the Noyes Cultural Arts Center in Evanston; and two productions in the ground floor studio space of their former long-time artistic home at the Piccolo Arts Depot.  During its 16th season, Piccolo explores humor in unexpected places, modern classics, and renewed favorites focused on relationships that connect shared experiences.  With a return to actor-driven story telling, audiences can still expect what Chicago Splash Magazine esteemed is Piccolo’s “singular brand of glorious absurdity,” and look forward to a new creative approach to making people laugh.

 

The Memory of Water, by Shelagh Stephenson; directed by Michael D. Graham

Previews Sept. 29 & 30 at 8p

Runs Oct. 1 – 30; Fridays & Saturdays at 8p, Sundays at 3p

All Performances at Piven Theatre Workshop, 927 Noyes St., Evanston, IL

 

The Snow Queen, book and lyrics by Jessica Puller, music by Arne Parrott; directed by Claire Hart

Previews Nov. 17 & 18 at 7:30p

Runs Nov. 19 – Dec. 18; Fridays at 7:30p, Saturdays at 3p & 7:30p, Sundays at 3p & 7:30p

All performances at Piccolo Theatre, 600 Main St., Evanston, IL

 

Private Eyes, by Steven Dietz; directed by Charlie Marie McGrath

Previews Feb 16 & 17 at 8p

Runs Feb. 18 – Mar. 19; Fridays & Saturdays at 8p, Sundays at 3p

All Performances at Piven Theatre Workshop, 927 Noyes St., Evanston, IL

 

The Complete Works of William Shakespeare Abridged, by Adam Long, Daniel Singer, and Jess Winfield;

directed by Nicole Keating

Previews Apr. 6 & 7 at 8p

Runs Apr. 8 – May 14; Fridays & Saturdays at 8p, Sundays at 3p; additional performances TBD

All performances at Piccolo Theatre, 600 Main St., Evanston, IL

 

Reading Series –  More Theatre, Less Stuff

Dates TBD in August

September, November, January, March, May, and June Friday & Saturday at 7:30p

All performances at Piccolo Theatre, 600 Main St, Evanston, IL

 

Subscriptions Packages include $80 (Main 4-show), $65 (Senior 4-show) $50 (Preview 4-show), $40 (Shorty 2-show); Reading Series is pay what you can with any subscription.  Single Tickets are $25 (Regular), $20 (Senior), $15 (Student / Industry) $10 (Kids age 3-10) $15 (Previews Only), $10 (Readings) Group Discounts Available.  All tickets and subscriptions sold through Piccolo Theatre Box Office, (847) 424-0089, Tuesday-Friday 10a-5p.

 

Largest Black Online Marketplace to Expand to Include Service-Based Businesses

Posted by Admin On July - 25 - 2016 Comments Off on Largest Black Online Marketplace to Expand to Include Service-Based Businesses

 All are encouraged to join the WeBuyBlack.com campaign

We Buy Black

Nationwide (BlackNews.com) — Inspired by the popular mantra, “do for self” a phrase representing the idea that Black communities must work to uplift themselves through strategic and collaborative economics, is one reason why Shareef Abdul-Malik launched WeBuyBlack.com, an online marketplace for black-owned businesses and sellers.

The website launched last year on June 19th, celebrating the 150 year anniversary of Juneteenth. Since its launch, the site has over 2,000 registered businesses and sellers; more than 4,500 products uploaded and have reached 500,000 page views.

Abdul-Malik, who is a Howard University graduate and owner of the site, says hed been inspired by institutions such as the Black Wall Street of Tulsa, Oklahoma that served the needs of the black community.

This is a long term result after inspirational institutions such as the Black Wall Street which was burned down, ridding hope of family and community survival, financial independence, and the collective motivation to build for our next generations well-being, says Abdul-Malik.

In October, WeBuyBlack.com launched a Kickstarter campaign aimed at raising $30,000 in 30 days to build a more efficient website. Over the 30 day timeline, the fundraising goal was reached and surpassed by over $4,000. In addition, the site was able to use the campaign to grow and galvanize its active social media following.

In February, the company launched its largest campaign to circulate $100,000,000 on the website through Feb. 1, 2017. Currently, the site boasts hundreds of Black-owned businesses, selling a wide variety of over 10,000 products. And now the company is gearing up for expansion.

Abdul-Malik said after receiving emails asking that the site include service-based businesses, his team begun working to answer the call for expansion.

“Imagine WeBuyBlack.com expanded to include services. Here, our community will now easily find businesses in their local area, hire them based off of previous customer experiences, qualifications, and get rewarded for circulating their dollars within our community, said Abdul-Malik.

Service-based businesses will have a large variety of resources from business tools, access to funding, social interaction with potential clients, abilities to add deals and coupons, and so much more, he said.

Our team has begun working on this feature, but we will need our communities support, again, to bring this expansion to fruition.”

When we first launched the campaign to generate funds for the creation of webuyblack.com, we raised just enough to produce the new site, fulfill promised rewards for the donations, handle legal documentation, and cover ongoing maintenance, according to Abdul-Malik.

Abdu-Malik said the company is seeking funding to situate WeBuyBlack.com for total growth and expansion.

Here’s a short breakdown of how the funds will be utilized:

* The design and production of a website compatible for Black owned service based businesses to find new customers and network with an ever growing community. ($15,000)

* To secure a contract for the maintenance and overall security of the website. ($11,000)

* To create a Mobile App for WeBuyBlack Products and Services ($13,500)

* To hire a professional Black owned blogging company to keep our new blog live and exciting. We’re creating more jobs! ($9,500)

* Hire a professional Black owned company to handle our social media pages and fully engage with our community for deals, updates, and upcoming events in your cities. ($6,100)

* The continuation of legal filings, trademarks, copyrights, and other legal documentation ($3,500)

* For promotional items, Marketing & Advertisement, Search Engine Optimization, UI testing, Travel, Events, Appearances ($6,500)

* Business assistance fund: Along with guidance from experts, we will provide Black owned businesses with a grant to help fund their operations and position businesses for ultimate growth. $3,000.

To help WeBuyBlack.com reach its goal, make your donation here: WeBuyBlack.com Expanding To Include Service-Based Businesses

For more information about the site, visit www.WeBuyBlack.com

Instagram www.instagram.com/webuyblack/
Facebook www.facebook.com/webuyblackcom
Twitter www.twitter.com/webuyblackcom

 

Young Black CEO Owns 4 Patents in Telecommunications

Posted by Admin On July - 25 - 2016 Comments Off on Young Black CEO Owns 4 Patents in Telecommunications
Young African American entrepreneur that owns and operates an independent telecommunications company now holds 4 U.S. Patents

Freddie Figgers

Tallahassee, FL (BlackNews.com) — 26-year old Freddie Figgers became one of the youngest African-Americans to own and operate an independent, U.S.-based telecommunications company when he launched Figgers Communications.

When he was just 9-years old, Freddie was given a non-functioning computer to take apart and fix. At the age of 13, he went to work as a computer technician and network and administrator, and at 16, Freddie Figgers launched a computer repair business. The same year, Figgers Computers, Inc., was born. He now holds 4 U.S. patents and continues to forge ahead.

The young inventor and software engineer has taken a passion for working on electronics and a dedication to helping others to create a series of services and products that seamlessly provide solutions for everyday needs. For instance, his Figgers F1 phone encourages safe driving by disallowing incoming or outgoing texts when it detects motion over 10MPH.

Outside of Figgers Communications, Freddie has even helped physicians with an invention that helps doctors monitor patients remotely, and in banking with his debit card fraud protection software.

Figgers Communications offers cell phone service plans and mobile broadband plans with nationwide coverage starting at $15 per month without annual contracts. For more details about the company, visit www.Figgers.com

For more details about Freddie Figgers himself, visit www.FreddieFiggers.com

 

Photo: Freddie Figgers, founder and CEO of Figgers Communications

 

Serve Illinois Commission Announces $15.6 Million for AmeriCorps Programs

Posted by Admin On July - 25 - 2016 Comments Off on Serve Illinois Commission Announces $15.6 Million for AmeriCorps Programs

32 grantees will place almost 1,600 AmeriCorps volunteers in communities

SPRINGFIELD, IL – The Serve Illinois Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service (Commission) today announced approximately $9.2 million in Corporation for National and Community Service federal grants to almost 1,600 volunteers in 32 AmeriCorps programs to better serve Illinois communities.  An additional $6.4 million will support education awards for the volunteers after their service is completed.

“This year we were able to leverage enough federal funds to expand AmeriCorps’ reach into new counties throughout the state,” said Serve Illinois Executive Director Scott McFarland.  “AmeriCorps members work every day to support thousands of Illinoisans in need including 425,000 disadvantaged youth and 10,000 veterans and military family members.  These volunteers are going to change the lives of hundreds of thousands of Illinoisans.”

These federal grants will be used for services in Illinois, including tutoring and mentoring at-risk youth, preparing communities to respond effectively to emergencies, feeding those in need, providing legal support services, reentering incarcerated individuals into their communities, and improving youth and adult literacy.  The Commission, a part of the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), administers the AmeriCorps programs in Illinois.

 

“While they serve others, AmeriCorps members also expand opportunity for themselves – gaining the skills, experience, and college money to help jumpstart their careers,” said Bill Basl, director of AmeriCorps. “We are looking for men and women of all ages who want to serve and make a difference for their country.”

 

AmeriCorps members dedicate a year to helping communities meet their unmet economic, education, health, public safety, and environmental needs.  Members may receive a modest living allowance, student loan deferment, and training.  Members who successfully complete their service receive an educational award of up to $5,775 to help pay for college, graduate school, vocational training, or to pay off student loans.

Since 1994, 33,000 people have volunteered 45 million hours in Illinois through AmeriCorps. Those hours equal more than $1.1 million in community impact.

Serve Illinois’ AmeriCorps Programs:

Program

Counties Served

Focus Areas

Funding

Members

Academy for Urban School Leadership

Cook

Education

$40,000

50

American Red Cross

Adams, Champaign, Cook, DeKalb, Kankakee, McDonough, Rock Island, Sangamon, St. Clair, Winnebago

Disaster Services

$332,085

27

Asian Human Services

Cook

Economic Opportunity, Education, Healthy Futures

$164,421

12

Bhicks Childcare
*New Program

Champaign, Coles, DeKalb, Jackson, Madison, McDonough, Sangamon, St. Clair

Education

$109,121

20

City Year Chicago

Cook

Education

$2,106,668

188

East St. Louis School District #189

St. Clair

Economic Opportunity, Education

$461,374

91

First Defense Legal Aid
*New Program

Cook

Safer Communities

$123,570

9

Girl Scouts of Northern Illinois
*New Program

Boone, DeKalb, Kane, McHenry, Stephenson, Whiteside, Winnebago

Education

$163,711

19

Greater Chicago Food Depository

Cook

Healthy Futures,
Veterans and Military Families

$139,143

15

Housing Forward

Cook

Capacity Building, Economic Opportunity

$162,898

12

Illinois Bar Foundation

Champaign, Cook, Kankakee, Knox, Lake, Madison, McLean, Will, Winnebago

Economic Opportunity, Veterans and Military Families

$280,641

68

Illinois Public Health Association

Adams, Cook, Kane, Hamilton, Lee, Macoupin, McLean, Ogle, Sangamon, Stephenson, St. Clair, Wayne

Disaster Services, Healthy Futures

$274,549

20

Lessie Bates Davis Neighborhood House

St. Clair

Capacity Building, Economic Opportunity, Education, Healthy Futures

$627,968

143

Lester & Rosalie Anixter Center
*New Program

Cook, DuPage, Lake

Economic Opportunity, Education

$109,820

16

Literacy Volunteers of Illinois

Cook, DuPage, Henry, Kane, Saline

Economic Opportunity, Education

$261,825

31

Lutheran Social Services of Illinois

Franklin, Jackson, Jefferson, Madison, Saline, St. Clair, Williamson, Winnebago

Economic Opportunity

$198,544

30

Northwestern University Settlement Association

Cook

Capacity Building, Education

$502,740

75

Public Allies

Cook

Capacity Building

$458,563

36

Rend Lake College

Alexander, Clinton, Franklin, Hamilton, Jackson, Jefferson, Johnson, Marion, Massac, Perry, Pulaski, Washington, Williamson, Union

Economic Opportunity, Education, Environmental Stewardship

$445,034

59

Sauk Valley Community College

Bureau, Carroll, Henry, Lee, Ogle, Whiteside

Capacity Building, Economic Opportunity, Education

$201,145

45

Schuler Family Foundation
*Program only receives education awards

Cook, Lake

Education

$0

40

Southwestern Illinois College

St. Clair

Education

$401,022

73

Springfield Urban League

Sangamon, Morgan

Education

$198,521

54

Teach for America

Cook

Education

$118,260

292

United Way Of Metropolitan Chicago
*New Program

Cook

Economic Opportunity, Education, Healthy Futures

$164,760

12

University of Illinois – Chicago

Cook

Economic Opportunity

$151,474

21

Up2Us – Coach Across America

Cook

Healthy Futures

$155,789

16

Western Illinois University

Carroll, McClean, McDonough, Shelby

Capacity Building, Disaster Services

$137,300

14

Western Illinois University – Quad Cities

Rock Island

Education

$207,854

40

YMCA – Rock River Valley

Winnebago

Capacity Building, Education, Healthy Futures

$190,057

28

Youth and Opportunity United, Inc. (YOU)

Cook

Education

$245,872

22

Youth Guidance

Cook

Education

$105,823

16

Serve Illinois is a 40 member (25 voting and 15 non-voting), bipartisan commission appointed by the Governor and administered by IDPH.  Its mission is to improve Illinois communities by enhancing traditional volunteer activities and supporting national service programs.  The commission supports local community-based efforts to enhance volunteer opportunities and the administration of Illinois’ AmeriCorps program. For more information on the Serve Illinois and AmeriCorps, visit www.Serve.Illinois.gov.

Collins’ Proposed Education Improvements Become Law

Posted by Admin On July - 25 - 2016 Comments Off on Collins’ Proposed Education Improvements Become Law

SPRINGFIELD, IL – State Senator Jacqueline Y. Collins (D-Chicago 16th) was pleased to announce the governor signed into law on Friday three pieces of legislation she sponsored to improve the quality of public K-12 education in Illinois.

·        House Bill 3199 requires charter schools, which are funded with public dollars, to comply with all state absenteeism and truancy laws applicable to traditional public schools.

·        House Bill 4343 extends the deadline for the Illinois Attendance Commission, created by legislation Collins sponsored in 2015, to meet, hold hearings and submit its findings to the General Assembly. The commission has already produced a report that suggests improvements to the way school districts and the state track student attendance. The commission’s findings also call on legislators and educators to devise better strategies for helping families with chronic truancy so their children can stay in school and become prepared for higher education and/or a career. Collins’ sponsorship of the commission was inspired by an alarming Chicago Tribune investigative series that pointed out high truancy rates in Chicago, Rockford and elsewhere in Illinois.

·        House Bill 119 prohibits the Chicago Public Schools from denying promotion or graduation to a student with a learning disability who fails a competency test when his or her failing score is directly attributable to his or her disability. To make sure this directive is being enforced and that students with disabilities and learning difficulties are not being wrongly held back, the legislation allows CPS to create a retention committee to consider each request that a student repeat a grade level. 

“Our state’s public schools exist to serve students of all incomes, backgrounds and abilities,” Collins said. “Illinois’ children face a variety of challenges to success in school and life, and there’s more we can do to connect them and their families with the resources they need to overcome whatever barriers stand in their way.”

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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