Let's take a chill look at the new bills that have been passed in Illinois this year. From all-gender bathrooms to healthcare for undocumented immigrants, there's a lot going on. So grab a snack and let's dive in!

All-gender Bathrooms (HB1286):

This bill sets some standards for all-gender restrooms in businesses. Basically, if a business wants to build one, they now have some guidelines to follow.

But don't worry, they're not forcing anyone to create new bathrooms or change the existing ones.

Anti-bullying in Schools (HB3425):

This bill's intent is to crack down on bullying in schools by including attacks on physical appearance, academic status, and more, as acts of bullying.

Schools also have to let parents know if their kid is being bullied or showing signs of self-harm due to bullying within 24 hours of the incident. The goal is to create safer environments for our kids.


Ban on Book Bans (HB2789):

In a world where book bans still exist, this bill is a breath of fresh air. It basically says that if a library violates the American Library Association's Bill of Rights by removing books for partisan or doctrinal reasons, it won't get state grants.

Let's keep those books available for everyone!

Budget Approval ($50.4 Billion Spending Plan):

Lawmakers have given the green light to a big ol' spending plan. We're talking $50.4 billion!

It took some time to put together because revenue estimates were going down, and there were unexpected costs related to healthcare for undocumented immigrants.

READ MORE: What’s Can Happen If You Skip Jury Duty in Illinois?

Cracking Down on "Crisis Pregnancy Centers" (SB1909):

This bill is all about holding anti-abortion rights organizations accountable. If a crisis pregnancy center gives out misleading information about abortion care, people can now sue them.

The Illinois attorney general's office also has the power to investigate these centers. Let's make sure people get accurate information.

Elected Chicago School Board Map (SB2123):

The deadline for drawing the new Chicago Board of Education map has been pushed back. People want the maps to reflect the demographics of Chicago Public Schools, not just the overall city demographics.

This bill also lets 16-year-olds preregister to vote and makes Election Day 2024 a state holiday for public schools. Go democracy!


Full-day Kindergarten (HB2396):

Illinois is making moves to establish full-day kindergarten programs in all school districts by a certain year. But don't worry, districts can get an extension if they meet certain funding requirements.

Healthcare for Undocumented Immigrants (SB1298):

The budget has set aside some cash, $550 million to be exact, for a healthcare program for undocumented residents aged 42 and older. It's like Medicaid-style coverage for them.

But they're also trying to keep costs under control, so the governor has some rule-making powers.

Job Openings and Pay (HB3129):

Businesses with 15 or more workers now have to include salary information in their job postings. Even if they use recruiters, they gotta spill the beans on salaries. Transparency is key, my friends!


Punitive Damages in Wrongful Death Cases (HB0219):

Illinois has joined the club with 34 other states by allowing families of victims to seek punitive damages in wrongful death lawsuits. It's a way to hold those responsible accountable and get some justice.

Red-light Cameras (HB3903):

No more shady business with red-light cameras! Contractors linked to these cameras can't make campaign contributions.

[h/t NPR]

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