dna 163466 1280CHICAGO – To discuss updates on the state’s DNA backlog, Senate Public Health Chair Patricia Van Pelt (D-Chicago) will lead a Senate committee hearing Thursday morning.

“A lot has been going on this year, but we have not forgotten about those who are waiting for answers for heinous crimes done to their loved ones,” Van Pelt said. “Illinois State Police have made some advances since our last hearing, and it’s time to check in on the task force recommendations.”

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bookkeeping 615384 1280CHICAGO – To help businesses across the state overcome financial burdens brought on by the pandemic, State Senator Patricia Van Pelt (D-Chicago) is pleased to see dozens of businesses in the 5th District will receive over a million dollars in Business Interruption Grants (BIG).

“Businesses are still struggling as we continue to endure this pandemic,” Van Pelt said. “I hope these grants help give businesses on the West Side a boost, and for those who haven’t applied yet, it’s not too late.”

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pexels pixabay 45842CHICAGO – The Senate held a joint hearing Monday to discuss the vast disparities Illinoisans face in access to treatment for addiction and mental health disorders. State Senator Patricia Van Pelt (D-Chicago) advocates for prioritizing mental health through a holistic approach.

“It’s crucial that we examine the intersections of mental health, bias and incarceration rates,” said Van Pelt, chair of the Senate Public Health Committee. “One in five people shot and killed by the police suffered from mental illness. People who should be getting treated for their illnesses are instead being abused, killed and locked up. We must begin to look at these issues differently.”

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pexels brett sayles 4818718CHICAGO – As the global pandemic continues to reveal racial disparities in the health care system, State Senators Mattie Hunter (D-Chicago) and Patricia Van Pelt (D-Chicago) called for massive reforms as part of the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus (ILBC)’s fourth pillar agenda.

“In order to truly fix the issues of health disparities amongst African Americans, it is important that we examine the root causes,” Hunter said. “For centuries, Black people have been disrespected, abused and misused in the name of health care. Though we cannot solve these issues overnight, we can start by addressing our afflictions piece by piece.”

“Black people have always been at the bottom of the totem pole in this country,” Van Pelt said. “Due to grave injustices regarding access to quality and affordable care, we are more susceptible to various illnesses, including COVID-19. We need a strategic plan that implements real and lasting change in order to reach true equity in our health care systems.”

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