State Senator Karina Villa on the Senate floorSPRINGFIELD – In an effort to expand the rights of survivors of sexual assault, State Senator Karina Villa (D-West Chicago) sponsored a law requiring hospitals to use the Illinois State Police online evidence tracking system and establishing a set of crime victims’ rights.

“Survivors of sexual assault need to know health care professionals and law enforcement officials are providing them with information on all available resources at their disposal,” Villa said. “It takes a brave person to come forward to report assault, and survivors deserve to feel at ease by staying in the loop on charging decisions and other updates to their cases.”

In 2020, the Illinois State Police launched an online tracking system for sexual assault evidence collection kits that allows survivors of sexual assault to track evidence in their cases, but not all hospitals in Illinois opted to participate. Villa’s law requires all hospitals to enter collected sexual assault evidence into the tracking system and requires health care facilities or law enforcement to provide survivors information on how to use the tracking system.

Villa’s law will also allow survivors to follow their cases through the justice system by establishing survivors’ right to timely notice regarding charging decisions and providing the opportunity to meet with the state’s attorney’s office to discuss the decision. Additionally, this law ensures survivors are able to seek judicial intervention to enforce their crime victims’ rights or get assistance with complaints from the office of the attorney general.

House Bill 1739 was signed into law Friday and will take effect Jan. 1, 2022.

Category: Press Releases

Firefighters extinguishing a fireMONTGOMERY – The Montgomery & Countryside Fire Protection District will receive $6,565 in small equipment grant funding to purchase critical equipment, State Senator Karina Villa (D-West Chicago) announced Tuesday.

“Properly functioning lifesaving equipment can make the difference in a life-or-death situation, and our first responders deserve to have all the necessary tools at their disposal,” Villa said. “Words will never be enough to thank the men and women who put their lives on the line every day to protect our communities, but I’m hopeful that this critical funding will help extend our gracious thanks to Illinois’ first responders.”

These grants are part of the Small Equipment Grant Program, under which 149 fire departments, districts and EMS providers across Illinois have been selected to receive $3.3 million to purchase new firefighting and ambulance equipment. The program will help fire departments and not-for-profit ambulance services in Illinois, particularly those that have trouble generating the necessary revenue for small equipment.

“Departments have had to make tough financial decisions, especially this year during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Illinois State Fire Marshal Matt Perez. “The Small Equipment Grant Program helps reduce the burden on smaller departments/districts while replacing aging and sometimes failing small equipment.”

A full list of grantees is available here.

Category: Press Releases

Friends walking their bike down a bike pathWEST CHICAGO – Illinois families will have safer access to bridges, sidewalks and bike paths thanks to a $1.7 million investment in Sugar Grove and Geneva, State Senator Karina Villa (D-West Chicago) announced Thursday.

“Illinoisans can finally travel and explore other communities with our state reopened, and it’s imperative that we provide safe and accessible transportation options,” Villa said. “These investments in our local infrastructure will benefit everyone in the 25th District.”

Residents of the 25th District will see improvements to bridges, sidewalks and bike paths, including:
• Blackberry Creek Bridge and shared-use path in Sugar Grove,
• Sidewalks for safe routes to schools in Sugar Grove, and
• Kautz Road Bike Path in Geneva.

These projects are part of the Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program, for which the Illinois Department of Transportation has selected 99 projects totaling $105.7 million. Projects receiving funding in this round of investment include biking and walking paths, trails, streetscape beautification, and other projects designed to encourage safe travel across the various modes of transportation at the local level.

“Working families across Illinois will be able to enjoy a higher quality of life with these expanded travel options,” Villa said. “I’m excited for the opportunity to enjoy the enhanced pedestrian and bike paths with our community.”

Category: Press Releases

"I'm pleased to see a fully funded evidence-based school funding formula in this budget to support our schools as they recover from the unprecedented challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. -State Senator Karina VillaSPRINGFIELD – In response to the General Assembly passing a state budget for the upcoming fiscal year, State Senator Karina Villa (D-West Chicago) released the following statement:

“I know firsthand how crucial it is for our students to have the necessary resources at school to prepare them for a bright academic future. I’m pleased to see a fully funded evidence-based school funding formula in this budget to support our schools as they recover from the unprecedented challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“What’s more, this legislation will help increase access to quality, affordable health care for Illinois families—an even more urgent need after the pandemic shed a light on the disparities that exist in our health care system.

“I proudly voted in favor of this measure to lend a hand to our children and families while funding the programs that will help build back Illinois’ economy.”

Category: Press Releases

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Office Information

Springfield Office:
M121 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-0471
 
District Office:
946 Neltnor Blvd., #108
West Chicago, IL 60185
(630) 326-9319

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