SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Elgie R. Sims, Jr. (D-Chicago) spearheaded a newly signed law which creates a hotline designed to receive reports from the public regarding potential self-harm or criminal acts directed at schools, students or school employees.

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“Our number one job is to protect our state’s most vulnerable populations,” said Sims. “This program was introduced to keep our children and schools safe while providing help to those who are battling mental illness.”

Senate Bill 3936, an initiative of Illinois State Police, requires ISP to work collaboratively with the Illinois Department of Human Services, Illinois Emergency Management Agency, Illinois State Board of Education and Department of Children and Family Services to provide support resources to students and teachers to prevent potential crisis situations.

The groups will work together to create a hotline to receive reports of potential self-harm and criminal acts directed at students and teachers. 

“We cannot wait for another tragic event to happen in our schools,” said Sims. “This is a key step in the intervention process that will not only protect our students from planned attacks but will also help improve police-community relations.” 

Senate Bill 3936 was signed into law on Friday, May 6.

Category: Press Releases

CHICAGO – Today, State Senator Elgie R. Sims, Jr. announced that 200 businesses across the 17th district were awarded nearly $4.5 million in funding from the Back to Business program thanks to his advocacy and support.

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“As we continue to deal with the impact COVID-19 has had on our daily lives, we are also seeing local businesses face tremendous financial distress as they also work to bounce back,” said Sims (D-Chicago). “The Back to Business Grant program has continued to be a nation-leading small business assistance program that has provided thousands of businesses across the state with millions of dollars in assistance to help them through these challenging times.”

A total of $4.475 million was awarded to 174 businesses in the 17th District. The B2B grants are awarded by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity using funds allocated to them by the American Rescue Plan through last year’s state budget.

DCEO has provided $250 million in B2B grants – thanks to strong support from Senator Sims – to small businesses throughout the state, with an emphasis on hard hit sectors, such as hotels, restaurants, bars, barbershops and salons, and disproportionately impacted areas.

“Small businesses enrich our communities,” Sims said. ” I am proud to have led efforts in the Senate to ensure this much-needed funding assistance reaches our hardest-hit areas.”

With strong leadership from Sims, the state has seen five Illinois’ General Obligation bond rating upgrades in the last year from all three of the nation’s primary credit rating agencies. The latest two-notch upgrade comes from Fitch Ratings, as a result of the state paying down its bill backlog from over $16 billion to less than $3 billion in a course of just a few years.

Because of the fiscally responsible budgeting approach taken by the state, Illinois saw an increase in funds available to assist small businesses.

Sims urges small businesses to visit the DCEO website for additional resources or contact DCEO’s First Stop Business Information Center Services at 800-252-2923 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Category: Press Releases

CHICAGO – For the fourth time in a year, Illinois has seen another improved bond rating. Fitch Ratings – one of the nation’s major credit rating agencies – announced upgrades Thursday thanks to the fiscally-responsible decisions made by Illinois Democrats.

State Senator Elgie R. Sims, Jr. (D-Chicago) – who serves as the Senate’s lead budget negotiator and Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee – released the following statement in response:

“When I look at the budget we passed last month, I see the work and years of fiscal responsibility paying off. We were able to pay down our bills and put money back in the pockets of the state’s hardworking families. Illinois is a stand-out state when it comes to putting the needs of our residents first – and we do so in a responsible, equitable way.

“Fitch’s two level rating upgrade shows our fiscally responsible budgeting approach is working and is independent proof that our state is headed in the right direction, our unemployment rate is down and we’ve added thousands of new jobs in key industries, like hospitality and professional services. Our future looks bright and I look forward to continued collaborative efforts with my colleagues to keep Illinois on this upward economic trajectory.”

Category: Press Releases

CHICAGO – State Senator Elgie R. Sims, Jr. (D-Chicago) issued the following statement after a draft Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade was leaked:

“A woman’s right to choose is just that – a fundamental right that should not be stripped due to antiquated politics or an attempt to disregard the progress we’ve made in the area of human rights. In reading the decision, it is clear that other fundamental rights in this country are in jeopardy so silence in this moment is not an option. Each of us, regardless of your feelings on reproductive rights, should be concerned. This type of activism by judges, to push a culture war driven agenda, should be concerning for us all.”

“Should this long settled law be overturned, women in Illinois can take solace in knowing that Illinois respects their right to choose and that this fundamental right still hold value. As always, I hope other states are looking to Illinois for leadership in this fight for protecting a woman’s right to choose.”

Category: Press Releases

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Chicago Office:
8233 S. Princeton
Chicago, IL 60620

P. 773.933.7715

Springfield Office:
307 State House
Springfield, IL 62706
P. 217.782.3201