April , 2019

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Archive for the ‘News and Blogs’ Category

Deans of the Wrongful Convictions Movement To Hold Court About Nation’s Most Prominent Cases

Posted by Admin On August - 31 - 2018 Comments Off on Deans of the Wrongful Convictions Movement To Hold Court About Nation’s Most Prominent Cases

CHICAGO, IL – Some of the nation’s most prominent activist attorneys in the movement to expose wrongful convictions will discuss how police and prosecutors tipped the scales of justice in the case of North Carolina novelist Michael Peterson, whose trial was the subject of the recent Netflix hit series The Staircase, and in the cases of Steven Avery and Brendan Dassey, whose convictions were the subject of the 10-episode “Making a Murderer” Netflix documentary series.


Attorneys David Rudolf from “The Staircase and Jerry Buting from “Making a Murderer” will speak at Lincoln Hall, 2424 N. Lincoln Ave in Chicago at 8 PM on Sunday, September 9.  The discussion will be moderated by Professor Steven Drizin of Northwestern University’s Pritzker School of Law, one of the leading experts in the country on the causes of wrongful convictions.

Rudolf and Buting will provide “behind the scenes” insights into how police and prosecutors tipped the scales of justice in their efforts to convict Michael Peterson, Steven Avery and Brendan Dassey. They will also take questions from the audience and discuss the important criminal justice issues raised in these true-crime documentaries.

For more information, call or email David Rudolf or Jerry Buting at the contacts listed above.

New Raoul Law Expands Protections for Sexual Assault Survivors

Posted by Admin On August - 31 - 2018 Comments Off on New Raoul Law Expands Protections for Sexual Assault Survivors

SPRINGFIELD, IL —  Legislation sponsored by State Senator Kwame Raoul (D-Chicago 13th) providing additional protections and rights for survivors of sexual assault or abuse was signed into law on Friday.

The Survivors’ Bill of Rights fills in gaps in Illinois’ current laws and brings the state in line with federal guidelines.

“A victim of sexual assault should not have to go through any more trauma when attempting to get help,” Raoul said. “We need to protect their rights and assist them in reporting these crimes so the perpetrators can be brought to justice.”

In drafting the legislation, Raoul worked closely with Rise, a national civil rights nonprofit that worked with Congress to pass a federal Survivors’ Bill of Rights in 2016. The organization is working to create legislation in every state to protect the estimated 25 million survivors of sexual assault.

New protections for victims of sexual assault or abuse include:

·         allowing them to shower at the hospital post-examination;

·         allowing them to obtain a copy of the police report relating to the incident;

·         allowing them to have a sexual assault advocate and a support person of their choosing present for medical and physical examinations;

·         allowing them to retain their own counsel;

·         prohibiting law enforcement from prosecuting the victim for a crime related to use of alcohol, cannabis, or a controlled substance based on the sexual assault forensic evidence collected;

·         providing that consenting to the collection of evidence by means of a rape kit extends the statute of limitations for a criminal prosecution to maximum currently provided by law (10 years).

The law also extends the time period during which rape kits can be tested.

Currently, if a victim of sexual assault or rape does not immediately consent to having a rape kit tested, law enforcement will retain it for 5 years or, in the case of a minor, 5 years after they turn 18.

This law extends that retention period to 10 years. A victim can provide written consent for the kit to be tested anytime during that period.

Senate Bill 3404 takes effect on Jan. 1, 2019.

Attorney General Madigan Launches Clergy Abuse Hotline

Posted by Admin On August - 31 - 2018 Comments Off on Attorney General Madigan Launches Clergy Abuse Hotline
CHICAGO, IL – Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan launched a Clergy Abuse Hotline for anyone in the state of Illinois to report allegations of sexual abuse by clergy members.
Madigan urged Illinois residents to call her Clergy Abuse Hotline at 1-888-414-7678 with any information on allegations of sexual assault and abuse. The hotline will be answered by trained staff in Madigan’s office during business hours. Messages left on the hotline will be returned if contact information is provided. People can also send emails to clergyabuse@atg.state.il.us. Madigan’s office will refer allegations to states’ attorneys as appropriate.
“I encourage anyone in the state who has any information about any sexually inappropriate behavior involving a member of the clergy or church in Illinois to contact my office,” Madigan said.
Last week, Madigan announced she was contacting the six dioceses of the Catholic Church in Illinois requesting to review all records relating to sexual assault and abuse. Madigan said the Catholic Church has a moral obligation to provide its parishioners and the public a complete and accurate accounting of all sexually inappropriate behavior involving priests in Illinois. Madigan said she expects the dioceses to cooperate fully or she will work with states’ attorneys and law enforcement throughout Illinois to investigate. Madigan’s announcement followed a Pennsylvania grand jury report that identified at least seven priests with connections to Illinois.

Five Million Americans say it’s Time to Impeach

Posted by Admin On August - 20 - 2018 Comments Off on Five Million Americans say it’s Time to Impeach
From: Tom Steyer
Bob Fertik, Democrats.com <activist@democrats.com>

The entire world watched the day Donald Trump took Vladimir Putin’s side in Helsinki, finally seeing what so many of us have been seeing for so long.

The world saw President Trump deny that Putin orchestrated a cyber-attack on our 2016 elections — and deny the consensus of our intelligence community that Russia is already attempting to attack our elections again this year.

There’s a name for siding with a hostile foreign dictator against the American people and their democracy: Treason. And Donald Trump’s treason has put our nation’s very democracy at risk.

Impeachment was written into the Constitution to remove a president who, just like Trump, betrays the American people. Join our movement and demand his impeachment now!

Show you’re in today: Yes, I will stand with Need to Impeach now and demand Congress impeach President Trump.

Last month Special Counsel Robert Mueller indicted 12 Russian intelligence officers for hacking party platforms and stealing information from half a million American voters. That makes for 35 indictments in the investigation of Russian interference and related crimes, along with five guilty pleas — so far.

Trump dismissed these allegations because Putin — who was standing next to him at the time, after a two-hour private meeting — “was extremely strong and powerful in his denial.”

Since when does the U.S. president take the word of the leader of Russia on matters of national security? We cannot let this stand. We cannot allow ourselves to be led by a compromised president who not only allows but defends foreign attacks on our nation’s most elemental democratic processes.

We need to impeach Donald Trump.

We can’t wait any longer. Stand with Need To Impeach to defend democracy and help demand the impeachment of this compromised president.

More than 5.5 million Americans have joined our movement so far. Every day, more and more people are realizing that we cannot let this president endanger our democracy any longer.

Thank you,

Tom Steyer

Federal Jury Slams Prison Employees for Brutal Behavior

Posted by Admin On August - 20 - 2018 Comments Off on Federal Jury Slams Prison Employees for Brutal Behavior

EAST ST. LOUIS, IL — In a verdict virtually without precedent in Illinois, late yesterday a federal jury found three prison guards and a Department of Corrections nurse personally liable for over $250,000 in punitive damages for an incident in which a handcuffed prisoner at Menard Correctional Center was beaten up and denied access to medical care.

While penalties against the State are not uncommon in which state employees violate people’s rights, civil penalties tabulated personally against the prison guards and nurses themselves are rare, and attorneys say this is one of the largest such verdicts in the state’s history.

“What makes this verdict particularly sting for the prison employees is that under Illinois statutes, the State is forbidden to compensate them for verdict awards that come out of their pockets,” said Sarah Grady, an attorney at Loevy & Loevy Attorneys at Law.

According to the suit, Osbaldo Nicolas was attacked and beaten by Defendant William Qualls, the sergeant of the cellhouse where Nicolas was housed. While he was handcuffed, Qualls punched Nicolas in the head, smashed his head into a concrete wall, and kicked him in the torso and legs until he fell unconscious. Defendants Nathan Berry and Justin Snell watched Qualls beat Nicolas and did nothing to stop the attack. Afterward, Nicolas saw Defendant Aimee Lang, who failed to examine or treat his injuries. At trial, Qualls concocted an absurd tale that Nicolas had gotten injured when he slipped and fell on some ice.

Ultimately the jury found that Qualls had used excessive force on Nicolas, and awarded Nicolas $200,000 in punitive damages. The jury also found that Berry and Snell had failed to intervene, and awarded compensatory and punitive damages against them as well. Finally, the jury found that Lang failed to provide Nicolas adequate medical care and awarded $50,000 in punitive damages for her misconduct.

In addition to Ms. Grady, Mr. Nicolas is represented by Julie Goodwin and Adair Crosley, also of Loevy & Loevy Attorneys at Law, one of the nation’s largest civil rights law firms. Over the past decade, Loevy & Loevy has won more multi-million-dollar jury verdicts than any other civil rights law firm in the country. A copy of the suit, Osbaldo Jose-Nicolas v. Nathan Berry, et al, No. 15 C 0964, is available here.

Illinois Payrolls Up for Sixth Straight Month

Posted by Admin On August - 20 - 2018 Comments Off on Illinois Payrolls Up for Sixth Straight Month

Unemployment Rate Drops to 4.2%

CHICAGO, IL – The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) announced today that the unemployment rate fell to 4.2 percent in July and nonfarm payrolls increased by +3,700 jobs over-the-month, based on preliminary data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and released by IDES. The June job gain was revised down slightly from its initial report to show a smaller gain. (+17,200 jobs versus +18,100 jobs).

Job growth accelerated in the May to July period posting average monthly gains of +9,500 jobs over this three-month period, more than the 6-month average monthly gain of +8,200 jobs between February and July 2018.

“The state’s unemployment rate continued its downward trend in July and stands at its lowest point in 18 years,” said IDES Director Jeff Mays. “Illinois payroll employment also saw its largest over-the-year gain in more than two years.”

“The Illinois economy continues its comeback,” said Illinois Department of Commerce Director Sean McCarthy. “We are seeing what reduced red tape, a competitive economy, and investment in workforce and career pathways can do to promote growth and opportunity across the state.”

In July, the three industry sectors with the largest over-the-month gains in employment were: Manufacturing (+2,400); Leisure and Hospitality (+2,000); and Professional and Business Services (+1,900). The industry sector with the largest payroll decline was: Government (-1,700).

Over-the-year, nonfarm payroll employment increased by +65,700 jobs with the largest gains in these industry sectors in July: Manufacturing (+14,800); Leisure and Hospitality (+13,100); and Government (+11,500). The industry sectors with the over-the-year declines were: Information Services (-3,600) and Mining (-100). Illinois nonfarm payrolls were up +1.1 percent over-the-year in sharp contrast to the nation’s +1.6 percent over-the-year gain in July. This was the fourth consecutive month with over-the-year payroll employment increases of more than 50,000 in Illinois.

The state’s unemployment rate is +0.3 percentage points higher than the national unemployment rate reported for July 2018, which fell to 3.9 percent. The Illinois unemployment rate is down -0.8 percentage points from a year ago when it was 5.0 percent. The Illinois jobless rate last stood at 4.2 percent in February 2000.

The number of unemployed workers decreased -1.3 percent from the prior month to 272,200, down -15.5 percent over the same month for the prior year. The labor force was about unchanged over-the-month and over-the-year. The unemployment rate identifies those individuals who are out of work and are seeking employment.

An individual who exhausts or is ineligible for benefits is still reflected in the unemployment rate if they actively seek work. To help connect jobseekers to employers who are hiring, IDES’ maintains the state’s largest job search engine, IllinoisJoblink.com (IJL), which recently showed 55,888 posted resumes with 204,916 jobs available.

Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates

Jul-18 Jun-18 Jul-17 3 month
Over the
Over the
Illinois 4.2% 4.3% 5.0% 4.2% -0.1 -0.8
U.S. 3.9% 4.0% 4.3% 3.9% -0.1 -0.4

Illinois Seasonally Adjusted Nonfarm Jobs – by Major Industry

Industry Jul-18
Prior mnth**
Year Ago
Over the
Over the
Moving Avg
Change from
Moving Avg
IL – Total Nonfarm 6,128,900 6,125,200 6,063,200 3,700 65,700 6,120,700 9,500
IL – Mining 7,700 7,700 7,800 0 -100 7,700 100
IL – construction 227,700 226,000 220,400 1,700 7,300 226,600 800
IL – Manufacturing 591,000 588,600 576,200 2,400 14,800 589,000 1,000
IL – Trade, Transportation, and Utilities 1,214,500 1,214,000 1,210,100 500 4,400 1,215,800 -1,200
IL – Information 82,400 83,200 96,000 -800 -3,600 93,100 -600
IL – Financial Activities 399,200 399,000 391,600 200 7,600 399,200 200
IL – Professional and Business Services 947,200 945,300 943,200 1,900 4,000 944,400 2,500
IL – Educational and Health Services 929,400 930,700 922,800 -1,300 6,600 929,700 1,100
IL – Leisure and Hospitality 623,200 621,200 610,100 2,000 13,100 619,900 2,600
IL – Other Services 252,300 253,500 252,200 -1,200 100 252,600 300
IL – Government 844,300 846,000 832,800 -1,700 11,500 842,900 3,000


  • 1976-2017 seasonally adjusted labor force data for Illinois, and all other states, have been revised as required by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The monthly historical revisions to state labor force estimates reflect new national benchmark controls, state working-age population controls, seasonal factors, as well as updated total nonfarm jobs and unemployment benefits claims inputs. Illinois labor force data were also smoothed to eliminate large monthly changes as a result of volatility in the monthly Census Population Survey (CPS) and national benchmarking. In February 2018, the BLS also introduced a new seasonal adjustment procedure for state labor force estimates which resulted in the entire monthly historical series for Illinois and all other states being replaced. For all of these reasons, the comments and tables citing unemployment rates in previous state news releases/materials may no longer be valid.
  • Monthly seasonally adjusted unemployment rates for Illinois and the Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metropolitan Division are available here: Illinois & Chicago Metropolitan Area Unemployment Rates
  • Monthly 2013-2017 seasonally adjusted nonfarm payroll employment data for Illinois have been revised. To control for potential survey error, the estimates are benchmarked annually to universal counts derived primarily from unemployment insurance tax reports. Effective with January 2018 estimates, the BLS introduced concurrent seasonal adjustment for monthly state nonfarm payroll employment estimates
  • Not seasonally adjusted jobs data with industry detail are available at Not Seasonally Adjusted Jobs. “Other Services” include activities in three broad categories: Personal and laundry; repair and maintenance; and religious, grant making, civic and professional organizations. Seasonally adjusted employment data for subsectors within industries are not available

About IDES : IDES encourages employment by connecting employers to jobseekers, provides unemployment insurance benefits to eligible individuals, produces labor market data and protects taxpayers from unemployment insurance fraud. Visit the Department’s website at www.ides.illinois.gov for more information. You can also follow IDES on Twitter and Facebook.

Massive Expansion of Police Misconduct Data Tool in Chicago

Posted by Admin On August - 20 - 2018 Comments Off on Massive Expansion of Police Misconduct Data Tool in Chicago

Citizens Police Data Project quadruples in size, adds shooting and use of force history

From: The Invisible Institute

Now contains the oldest electronic disciplinary records available at Chicago Police Department, dating back to 1967

CHICAGO. IL –The Invisible Institute, a journalism production company on the city’s South Side, has quadrupled the size of its public database, the Citizens Police Data Project. The project has expanded to include more than 240,000 misconduct allegations and more than 22,000 individual Chicago Police officers over a 50-year period — as far back as such electronic disciplinary records exist.

The new searchable records also make public, for the first time, the full names of officers who have fired their weapons. Other critical datasets include officers’ use of force histories, ranks, promotions, commendations, and salary information.

The Citizens Police Data Project is used widely by Chicagoans, lawyers, journalists, academics, legislators and law enforcement officials. It arises out of two watershed events: a landmark court decision in 2014 that made police disciplinary records public in Illinois and a major open records victory in 2016, in which courts rejected the argument of the Fraternal Order of Police that disciplinary records should be destroyed after four years.

More recently, the database has been used to support claims in the class action lawsuit that catalyzed the process that recently resulted in a draft consent decree to govern police reform in Chicago.

“We’ve seen tremendous public benefit from this database,” said Jamie Kalven, founder of the Invisible Institute and the plaintiff of Kalven v. City of Chicago. “The greatly enlarged and enriched data now available will make it even more powerful as a tool for holding law enforcement agencies accountable.”

An initial analysis of the new data has found:

  • A small fraction of Chicago’s police force — only 130 officers — account for about a third of all incidents of deadly force, as reported in The Intercept today in “The Chicago Police Files.” These officers repeatedly participate in shootings, some as many as six times, whereas more than 99 percent of the police force will never be involved in any such incident over the course of their careers


  • Officers with high levels of complaints (at least 10 complaints) generate 64% of all complaints (January 1, 2000 – June 30, 2016 data) on the force. Police officers with the most complaints are less likely to be disciplined.


  • From 2000 to 2016, only 1.2% of civilian complaints resulted in an officer being suspended or terminated.


  • When citizens file complaints against the police, they are 20 times less likely to be believed than when police officers file complaints against their fellow officers (2000-2016 data).


  • Excessive force cases rarely result in discipline. Out of more than 8,700 excessive force claims from January 2007 to June 2016, investigators sustained only 1.5% of cases. Nearly 74% of these cases were filed by African-Americans.


  • Racial disparities in use of force have increased over the last decade, even as Chicago’s black population has declined. These disparities are seen even in majority-white areas of the city. Of the five police districts with the highest rates of force against African Americans per African-American resident, four are majority-white districts. African Americans also experience higher rates of force even in low-crime neighborhoods.


  • Internal reports show young black men experience Chicago Police use of force far more than white men — 14 times more often, according to 2005-2015 data — as reported by The Intercept today. Young black women were also 10 times more likely to experience force as their white female peers and twice as likely as young white men.


  • Cliques of misconduct and violence develop within the police department, according to Invisible Institute data published by The Intercept today. Police misconduct spreads within networks of officers as officers are exposed to other officers with higher numbers of complaints.


  • Complaints from areas of the city where high portions of the population experience extreme poverty — where many residents  earn less than $1.25 per day — have a significantly lower likelihood of being sustained.

The new data also reveal alarming trends with respect to domestic violence among police officers. More than 6 percent of all Chicago police officers were accused of physical domestic abuse between 2000 and 2016 (excluding cases where multiple officers were accused or where the officer was unidentifiable). These officers also receive 50% more use of force complaints than their peers, and they receive other complaints of all kinds at a 55% higher rate than fellow officers.

The largest online database of its kind, the Citizens Police Data Project originally launched in November 2015. It was named the winner of the Knight News Challenge on Data in January 2015, the Hillman Foundation’s Sidney Award in December 2015, and the Society of Professional Journalists’ Sunshine Award in 2016.

The Invisible Institute is a journalism production company on the South Side of Chicago. Our mission is to enhance the capacity of citizens to hold public institutions accountable. Among the tactics we employ are human rights documentation, investigative reporting, civil rights litigation, the curating of public information, and the orchestration of difficult public conversations. The activities of the Invisible Institute cohere around a central principle: we as citizens have co-responsibility with the government for maintaining respect for human rights and, when abuses occur, for demanding they be addressed.

Sign up for The View From The Ground, a weekly roundup of developments and coverage on issues central to the work of the Invisible Instit


The Intercept, a publication of First Look Media, was launched in 2014 to provide an outlet for fearless, adversarial journalism. Our reporters have the editorial freedom to hold powerful institutions accountable, digging beneath official narratives to reveal the hidden truth. The Intercept’s award-winning coverage focuses on national security, politics, civil liberties, the environment, technology, criminal justice, media, and more. Regular contributors include co- founding editors Glenn Greenwald and Jeremy Scahill.

Bill to Boost Women-Owned and Minority-Owned Businesses Becomes Law

Posted by Admin On August - 20 - 2018 Comments Off on Bill to Boost Women-Owned and Minority-Owned Businesses Becomes Law

 SPRINGFIELD, IL — Legislation, proposed by Illinois Comptroller Susana A. Mendoza, requiring Constitutional Officers to aspire to the same goals state agencies do of working with businesses owned by women, minorities and people with disabilities has become law.

Senate Bill 3106 requires state constitutional officers to establish aspirational goals for contract awards in accordance with provisions of the Business Enterprise for Minorities, Women, and Persons with Disabilities Act. Under this act, 20% of contracts awarded to businesses by Constitutional Officers, including the Comptroller’s Office, should go to businesses owned by minorities, women, and individuals living with disabilities.

“I would like to thank the sponsors of this legislation, Representative Will Davis and Senator Toi Hutchinson. This marks the first time in our state’s history that BEP goals will be applied to all procurements for the Office of the Comptroller,” Comptroller Mendoza said. “This is just one more step we can take towards making state government better represent those it serves. Encouraging the growth of these businesses will lead to a more competitive environment for contracts and, eventually, potential savings for the state.”

Constitutional officers will be required to report annually on their websites how their offices perform in accordance with BEP procurement guidelines.

“I am pleased that Comptroller Mendoza and other constitutional officers took this initiative,” Representative Davis, D-Homewood, said. “This will help ensure that business contracts with the state become more equitable, and that helps everyone.”

The General Assembly passed SB 3106 unanimously. The legislation has an immediate effective date.

“The most important part of actually supporting the growth of these small businesses is when people in positions of authority actually make this a priority. I am thrilled that Comptroller Mendoza believes that we can either talk about it or do something about it,” Senator Hutchinson, D-Olympia Fields, said.

You can view this release on our website here.

Advocates Call for a Moratorium on Expressway Expansion in Chicagoland

Posted by Admin On August - 20 - 2018 Comments Off on Advocates Call for a Moratorium on Expressway Expansion in Chicagoland

Data shows Chicago region is growing more car dependent amid failed attempts to relieve congestion by building and expanding roads

Chicago, IL— For decades, regional planning leaders have urged cities and villages across metropolitan Chicago to build communities in ways that reduce driving and increase walking, bicycling and public transit ridership. But a new analysis by the Active Transportation Alliance shows that the region has only grown more car dependent.

The analysis demonstrates the region’s inability to build its way out of traffic congestion. Between 1996 and 2015 alone, the region spent billions of dollars to add more than 1,000 miles of new roadway that was purported to reduce congestion. The data is consistent with research showing that roadway expansion in urban areas only exacerbates traffic congestion in the long run by inducing more driving that over time fills in the additional roadway space, with congestion rebuilding to previous levels.

For these reasons, Active Trans is calling for a moratorium on expressway expansion.

“The region should stop wasting money on roads that don’t relieve congestion beyond the short-term and spend the money instead on effective strategies like walking, biking and transit that are also healthier and more sustainable,” said Ron Burke, executive director of the Active Transportation Alliance. “Shared-use and autonomous vehicles will largely replace the inefficient and deadly practice of relying on 3,000-pound single occupancy vehicles to move people in urban areas, so we need to plan for how to repurpose roads and parking spaces, not expand them.”

Despite relatively slow population growth and the construction of new roads, traffic congestion in metro Chicago has become much worse. According to the Texas A&M Transportation Institute, the average Chicagoland commuter lost 31 hours per year to traffic congestion in 1982 and 61 hours in 2014.

A larger percentage of Chicagoland residents are driving to work today compared to 1980, and the total amount of driving in the region has grown approximately four times faster than the population since 1980. While the region’s population grew by 18 percent since 1980, the traffic increased by 66 percent in the same period.

This rapid growth in driving has led to comparatively more traffic congestion, crashes, injuries and fatalities, as well as more air pollution, flooding and chronic disease due to physical inactivity. It also has made it more difficult for people to access jobs and other destinations without a car, worsening economic hardship for low-income residents.

The Active Transportation Alliance’s 2018 Regional Mode Share Report analyzes commuting trends in the city and suburbs, breaking down the data by transportation mode, county and demographics.

For suburban residents, the percentage of work trips by car increased from 84 percent in 1980 to 86 percent in 2016, while the percentage of suburban work trips by walking, biking and transit decreased from 14.1 to 8.1 percent over the same period. In the city of Chicago, 58 percent of residents drove to work in 1980. The number increased to 65 percent in 2000 before falling back to 58 percent in 2016.  Walking, biking and transit accounted for 40.4 percent of Chicago work trips in 1980 and 36.5 percent in 2016.

Another problem with building a region that requires a car to get around is the hardship it creates for people who cannot physically drive or cannot afford a car.

“The region’s continued investment in car-dependency and underfunding of other travel modes discriminates against the poor and people who cannot physically drive by making it difficult to reach jobs and other destinations without a car,” said Burke.

Active Trans sent a letter to the region’s planning agency, the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP), the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) and the Illinois Tollway Authority (ITA) calling for the exclusion of expressway expansion projects in the new comprehensive regional plan called “ON TO 2050” and in IDOT’s and ITA’s roadway plans.

Active Trans asked each agency to adopt a policy acknowledging that expressway expansion leads to more driving that offsets congestion relief. The regional advocacy group is also urging the state and region to instead prioritize lasting, cost-effective congestion relief strategies like better public transportation and rush-hour demand management such as converting travel lanes to carpool lanes during rush hour.

While more two-income households have contributed to the growth in driving, the analysis finds that the main cause is that most people don’t have an effective way to get to work and other destinations without a car, especially in the suburbs.

Active Trans notes that, even if roads are expanded with car pool lanes or tolled lanes as proposed by the Illinois Department of Transportation for I-55 and I-290, the result would be more driving and cars, not less.

Investments in transit, biking and walking carry greater long-term benefits at a much lower cost. The planned expansions of I-294, I-290 and I-55 would cost a combined $7.4 billion. In comparison, Chicago added 100 miles of new bikeways from 2011 to 2015 for $12 million, and converting expressway lanes to carpool lanes is inexpensive.

The Active Transportation Alliance is partnering with peer advocates and community-based organizations across the region to fight for these changes in the development of the regional plan and beyond. Active Trans’ Walk and Roll the Vote campaign will highlight these issues by educating voters and candidates in the upcoming 2018 statewide elections and 2019 municipal elections.

NAACP Committed to Countering Disenfranchisement of Voters in Wake of Husted Decision

Posted by Admin On June - 16 - 2018 Comments Off on NAACP Committed to Countering Disenfranchisement of Voters in Wake of Husted Decision

NAACP Committed to Countering Disenfranchisement of Voters in Wake of Husted DecisionBALTIMORE — The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the nation’s premier civil rights organization released the following statement on today’s Supreme Court Decision to uphold the Ohio Supplemental Voter “List Maintenance” Process:

“The NAACP is disappointed in today’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold Ohio’s supplemental voter ‘list maintenance’ process, but is likewise determined to protect infrequent voters of color from being disenfranchised through Ohio’s process and similar processes used by other states.  In today’s 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court ruled that Ohio’s program does not violate the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) by impermissibly targeting persons who have not recently voted for possible removal from voting rolls.  The NAACP filed an amicus brief to the Court in this case, which was cited by Justice Sotomayor in her dissenting opinion, which states:  “In concluding that the Supplemental Process does not violate the NVRA, the majority does more than just misconstrue the statutory text. It entirely ignores the history of voter suppression against which the NVRA was enacted and upholds a program that appears to further the very disenfranchisement of minority and low-income voters that Congress set out to eradicate.”

“This decision demands that the NAACP and like-minded organizations redouble their efforts to ensure that voters of color are registered and prepared to vote in this fall’s elections,” said NAACP General Counsel Bradford Berry.  “As we reflect on the life and legacy of Medgar Evers, who was assassinated 55 years ago because of his voter registration work in Mississippi, we call on our members and supporters to engage their state and local officials to focus their efforts on increasing voter participation in this fall’s elections, rather than targeting the most vulnerable of our citizens for removal from the voting rolls.”


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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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