analysis 4402809 640GRAYSLAKE – After months of discussion, negotiation and development of a plan to support sexual assault survivors, State Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake) is pleased to see the Illinois State Police (ISP) Division of Forensic Services (DFS) has unveiled a sexual assault evidence tracking system to allow survivors to track the status of their case.

“Every day, survivors await justice, and now they will be able to track the progress of their kit,” Bush said. “Though nothing can undo the pain survivors experienced, I hope this new tracking system empowers survivors to continue moving forward.”

Through ISP’s new tracking system, survivors of sexual assault will be able to monitor the status of the evidence in their case, from collection at the hospital, through law enforcement pick-up and submission to the forensic lab, and ultimately to the State's Attorney's office, where final results will be received. The system, called CheckPoint, can only be accessed by unique case numbers and passwords to ensure privacy of survivors and law enforcement.

“The CheckPoint system will allow survivors to have real-time information about their evidence while protecting their privacy,” said ISP Director Brendan F. Kelly. “This point-by-point knowledge of the location of their evidence will help to empower survivors and foster public trust in the system. ISP DFS personnel remain committed to supporting survivors of sexual assault through transparency and accountability.”

Currently, any survivor of sexual assault who seeks a forensic medical exam at a health care facility that has implemented the CheckPoint system is able to track the progress of their evidence in the system.

Bush served on the Sexual Assault Evidence Tracking and Reporting Commission, which recommended the tracking system in its final report in 2018. The report can be found here.

 

Category: News

pexels polina tankilevitch 3873188GRAYSLAKE – With flu season approaching in the midst of the ongoing pandemic, State Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake) is concerned for the safety of older Illinoisans and urges them to get a flu shot as soon as possible.

“COVID-19 has proven to be deadly, and while we are still protecting ourselves from this virus, it is equally important that we protect ourselves from other deadly illnesses as well,” Bush said. “Getting a flu shot will help prevent their chances of getting the flu, which will also help to distinguish whether or not their symptoms are COVID-19-related.”

Older adults and people with chronic health issues are more likely to develop serious complications resulting from the flu, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that 70% to 85% of seasonal flu-related deaths have occurred in adults 65 years and older.

“It is in the best interest of older adults and health care providers to get a flu shot, so that medical resources remain available for COVID-19 patients,” Bush said. “I am urging all older adults to protect themselves during this time and schedule an appointment to get a flu shot.”

Medicaid and the majority of insurance plans cover one flu shot per flu season. Those seeking medical treatment should always consult a health care provider. Find a flu vaccine provider near you with Vaccine Finder.

Category: News

GRAYSLAKE – As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to accentuate inequalities in access to technology throughout Lake County and the entire state, Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake) is highlighting that 15 Lake County-based schools have been selected to receive part of $80 million to close the digital divide.

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“No student should have to miss out on learning because they don’t have the proper technological resources to participate in e-learning,” Bush said. “I am pleased to learn 15 Lake County schools have received funds to close the digital divide and give every student a chance to succeed – regardless of financial situation.”

Nearly 500 schools across the state received a total of more than $80 million to help ensure all students have reliable access to the technology they need for remote learning. The money comes from the Digital Equity Formula Grant, which was funded by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act. The grant allocated funding to the highest-need communities in the state to provide important e-learning resources to low-income families.

Schools can use the grant to purchase additional devices and connectivity or to cover purchases made since the onset of the pandemic on March 13.

For more information about COVID-19 and education, visit isbe.net/covid19.

Category: Press Releases

GRAYSLAKE – To help small business owners dealing with the devastating financial impact of COVID-19, State Senator Melinda Bush is encouraging them to apply for the second round of Business Interruption Grants.

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“Small businesses make Lake County such a great place to live. Seeing so many forced to close their doors has been heartbreaking,” Bush said. “I am pleased the state has prioritized this much-needed financial relief and hope business owners will take advantage of the assistance.”
The BIG Program has allocated $220 million in the second round for movie theatres, performing arts venues, concert venues and more to help them stay afloat through this time of crisis and ensure they have the resources to open safely in the coming months.

BIG funds may be used to help businesses cover the costs of payroll, rent, utilities and other working capital during the time they have experienced interruptions due to the pandemic.

To ensure funds are distributed across the state and across business types, $60 million has been specifically allocated for heavily distressed industries, including indoor recreation facilities and amusement parks, and another $70 million has been set aside for businesses located in disproportionately impacted areas, or low-income areas that have experienced high rates of COVID-19. Businesses located in the 60099 ZIP code of Zion and the 60087 ZIP code of Waukegan qualify for part of the $70 million. For a full list of eligible ZIP codes, click here.

During its first round of funding earlier this year, the program granted more than $49 million to small businesses across the state. More than 20 business in the district Bush represents received a combined $400,000 earlier this year.

Applications open Thursday, Sept. 17 and can be found on the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity’s website alongside a full list of criteria.

Category: Press Releases

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Springfield Office:
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Phone: (217) 782-7353

District Office:
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Phone: (847) 548-5631