August 30, 2017
On August 18, Gov. Rauner signed two youth bills advocated for by CCH: Housing for Homeless Minors (HB3212) and Increasing Access to Counseling Services (HB3709).
The governor also issued an amendatory veto of our third youth bill, on Food Insecurity on College Campuses (HB3211). He approved the key provision to provide SNAP for vocational students. CCH and its allies will advocate that the bill be approved by legislators this fall.
The CCH Law Project, public policy department, and its statewide Youth Committee worked with other advocates to introduce this legislative package we call Three Steps Home, which offers homeless and unaccompanied youth the opportunity to further their education, housing options, and access to counseling. Because of young age and vulnerable circumstances, services to these youth are often been limited. Read more.
Key legislation to expand record-sealing in Illinois has been signed into law after advocacy by the CCH Reentry Project and RROCI coalition partners.
Gov. Bruce Rauner signed House Bill 2373 at an August 24 ceremony hosted by the Safer Foundation, a Reentry Project member.
Effective immediately, HB2373 expands record-sealing eligibility to more felonies, three years after completion of sentence. Before, only nine felonies were eligible for sealing.
HB 2373 will offer relief to people in reentry who face years of discrimination because of an old record. Read more.
Homeless youth and their providers in Chicago now can access StreetLight Chicago using a computer! The free mobile application of resources for homeless youth is accessible on a new website, www.streetlightchicago.org
StreetLight Chicago is a database listing resource and healthcare information for homeless youth. It was co-created by the Youth Futures legal aid clinic at the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless and the Young Invincibles, with support from the VNA Foundation. Read more.
Homeless group close to suit over bike path plan in Uptown
By Mary Wisniewski
The more than three dozen people who live in tents under the Lake Shore Drive bridges at Wilson and Lawrence avenues know better than anyone that the structures need repair.
Concrete from the Depression-era bridges is crumbling onto the sidewalks and streets below, posing a deadly hazard to tent-dwellers, as well as motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians.
So it may seem strange that a homeless advocacy group might sue the city to stop bridge repairs before they start in mid-September. But attorneys for the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless want to stop the city's plans to put bike paths on the wide sidewalks under the bridges, which the coalition said would permanently drive the homeless out.
"If they put the bike paths in, we ain't going to have room for our tents," said Thomas Gordon, 58, who lives under the Lawrence bridge. The sidewalks can currently accommodate both tents and pedestrians — bike paths would cut the space. Read more.
Read CCH's statement on the issue here.
Thank you to everyone who attended our annual Golf Outing at Wilmette Golf Club! The event raised more than $31,000 to support our work to prevent and end homelessness. Check out pictures of the event here.