News Around Illinois - February 24, 2020

 
Reginald Hardwick/Illinois Newsroom

State Lawmaker Sponsoring ‘Crown Act’ In Illinois

PEORIA - State Rep. Jehan Gordon-Booth (D-Peoria) wants to amend the Illinois Human Rights Act to ban hairstyle discrimination. She says her Crown Act will likely come up for a vote near the end of the legislative session. The goal is to help black and Latinx women who are disproportionately impacted by hairstyle discrimination in the workplace or their daily lives. Leading up to the vote, Gordon-Booth is recruiting powerful women like Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx for "The Politics of Hair" campaign. - Tim Shelley, WCBU News

Illinois Supreme Court Candidate Forum Set For Chicago

CHICAGO — Candidates running in hopes of filling an open seat on the Illinois Supreme Court are expected to participate in a Chicago forum. The Chicago Bar Association is hosting the Wednesday event at the James R. Thompson Center. Organizers say six of the seven primary candidates running to replace retired Justice Charles Freeman are expected to attend. The candidates who've confirmed attendance are Supreme Court Justice P. Scott Neville Jr., who has been the interim replacement for Freeman. The others are attorney Daniel Epstein and appellate court justices Cynthia Cobbs, Justice Nathaniel Howse Jr., Margaret Stanton McBride and Jesse Reyes. - Associated Press

Hospital, College In Springfield Team Up On Nursing Shortage

SPRINGFIELD — Lincoln Land Community College and Memorial Health System will team up to expand nursing education to address a national shortage. The (Springfield) State Journal-Register reports Lincoln Land will admit 90 additional nursing students beginning in the fall of 2021, for a total of 215 per year. Memorial Health System will contribute $6.1 million to renovate a campus hall as a nursing center, buy state-of-the-art equipment and hire additional faculty. Lincoln Land President Charlotte Warren said there will be a shortage of 21,000 nurses in Illinois next year. She says one-quarter of the current nursing workforce will retire within the next five years. - Associated Press

Fire Officials Say Homes Need Approved Smoke Alarms By 2023

SPRINGFIELD — State fire officials are reminding Illinois residents to get approved smoke alarms in their homes ahead of a 2023 deadline. A state requires that all smoke alarms and detectors have to have a sealed 10-year battery unless the alarms are hardwired into the residence. The Illinois Office of the State Fire Marshal says there were 105 residential fire deaths in 2018 and more than 70% took place in homes without smoke alarms. Illinois Fire Marshal Matt Perez says smoke alarms will provide an early warning to evacuate before circumstances become dire.  - Associated Press

Story source: Illinois Newsroom