State Senator Karina VillaSPRINGFIELD – Tailored support services and resource centers for undocumented students will be available on college campuses under a new law sponsored by State Senator Karina Villa (D-West Chicago).

“Undocumented college students deserve to have equitable and inclusive access to resources to help them successfully graduate and become contributing members of society,” Villa said. “These liaisons and resource centers will have a profound impact on retention and matriculation rates for marginalized communities on campus.”

The law will require public universities and community colleges in Illinois to designate an employee as an Undocumented Student Resource Liaison, as well as encourage schools to establish an Undocumented Student Resource Center on campus to assist undocumented students.

Liaisons and resource centers will help undocumented and mixed-status students navigate financial aid programs, academic and career counseling, retention and matriculation support services, and mental health counseling offered on campus.

House Bill 3438 was signed into law Friday and takes effect immediately.

Category: Press Releases

Pottawatomie Park in St. CharlesST. CHARLES – The City of St. Charles will receive over $8,000 in grant funding for historic preservation projects through the National Park Service’s Historic Preservation Fund, State Senator Karina Villa (D-West Chicago) announced Wednesday.

“Families in the 25th District have long been able to enjoy the rich history throughout the district, especially in St. Charles,” Villa said. “I’m eager to see the results of the architectural survey, and I hope we can add another historic district to our community.”

More than $131,400 in Certified Local Government grants will be distributed throughout Illinois for nine historic preservation projects that focus on surveys, public education, planning and nominations to the National Register of Historic Places.

St. Charles was awarded $8,262 in Federal Historic Preservation Funds, and the City of St. Charles will match $3,057 of that funding to conduct an intensive architectural survey in the Pottawatomie Neighborhood. The survey will identify and document the history and character of structures in the neighborhood for the potential establishment of a fourth historic district in the community.

Information on how to apply for the next round of Certified Local Government grants can be found here.

Category: Press Releases

State Senator Karina VillaSPRINGFIELD – Schools will have to follow specific trauma-informed guidelines for school shooting lockdown drills under State Senator Karina Villa’s (D-West Chicago) new law.

“We should be doing everything in our power to stop school shootings and avoid the trauma that comes from shooting events — including that caused by involvement in graphic simulations during lockdown drills,” Villa said. “Our students should feel safe at school, and these trauma-informed guidelines will help them prepare for the worst without carrying the weight of a simulated tragedy.”

Villa’s law will tone down law enforcement drills for school shootings to put students’ safety and well-being at the forefront. Any drills will have to be announced in advance and involve school personnel, and they cannot include active shooter simulations.

Parents and guardians will be notified of upcoming lockdown drills and can choose to exempt their child from participation for any reason. School administrators and personnel will also be able to exempt students from participation in lockdown drills, and instead provide alternative safety education and instruction related to an active threat.

House Bill 2400 was signed into law Tuesday and takes effect immediately.

Category: Press Releases

051920210748SPRINGFIELD – Illinoisans will soon be able to donate unused prescription drugs for redistribution through State Senator Karina Villa’s (D-West Chicago) Prescription Drug Repository Program.

“As we fight to lower the cost of prescription drugs, it’s imperative that we work to provide alternatives to buying medication at the costly market value,” Villa said. “I-DROP will help ensure families are not forced to make the tough decision between paying bills or buying food and purchasing necessary prescription medication.” 

Anyone can donate certain prescription drugs or necessary supplies to administer a prescription drug under Villa’s Illinois Prescription Drug Repository Program (I-DROP). These items will be redistributed to eligible individuals who have been prescribed the medication, but who can’t afford it. 

"Until now, the only thing Illinoisans could do with unused prescription drugs was destroy them," said State Representative Will Guzzardi (D-Chicago), who sponsored the bill in the House. "Thanks to this new law, we'll be able to donate safe, unexpired drugs and get them into the hands of people who need them. It's a win-win for Illinois."

House Bill 119 was signed into law Monday and will take effect Jan. 1, 2022.

Category: Press Releases

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