SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – State Rep. Elizabeth “Lisa” Hernandez, D-Cicero, passed a series of reforms out of the House that will put in place strong state-level protections on issues ranging from visa certifications to employment and housing, building on the progress of the Illinois TRUST Act.
“By working together, we were able to pass wide-ranging protections for immigrant families across Illinois,” Hernandez said. “The VOICES Act will build on the momentum of the Me Too movement by ensuring that that the voices of all women, including women of color and immigrant women, are included.”
Hernandez is the chief sponsor of the VOICES Act, Senate Bill 34, which would require law enforcement and other investigative agencies to respond to certifications for U-Visa and T-Visa applications for victims of crimes like domestic violence and human trafficking no later than 90 business days after receiving the request. To qualify for the U-Visa or T-Visa, individuals need a police department or other agency to provide a certification confirming that the individual is contributing to the investigation. These certifications do not grant any immigration benefit. Determining visa eligibility still remains the exclusive responsibility of the federal government.
Additionally, Hernandez is a lead sponsor of additional immigrant protections which now await Gov. Bruce Rauner’s consideration:
- Senate Bill 35 would limit state-funded entities like schools and libraries from assisting federal deportation officers without a court order;
- Senate Bill 3103 would ensure landlords cannot discriminate against their tenants based on their immigration status;
- Senate Bill 3109 would ensure that individuals are not prohibited from receiving a professional licensure, a Professional Educators License (PEL) and appropriate endorsement under the School Code, and a license to practice law based their immigration status; and
- Senate Bill 3488 would prohibit state and local government agencies from using state funds to participate or provide support for creating, publishing, or maintaining a registry program.
“It is up to us at the state-level to continue fighting back against an agenda that aims to tear families apart and vilify hard-working people,” Hernandez said. “These reforms will build on the progress we made with the TRUST Act, so it is my hope that Governor Rauner will reject the politics of Donald Trump and sign these protections into law.”
Visit Rep Lisa Hernandez website
229-E Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 558-1844 FAX
2137 S. Lombard
Cicero, IL 60804
(708) 222-5241 FAX