SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – As the special session for the Illinois General Assembly adjourned, state Rep. Natalie Manley, D-Joliet, released the following statement:
“The state of Illinois is facing many widespread challenges as a result of COVID-19, despite continued efforts to help families and businesses in need. There is much more work to be done to get our state back on the right track, but I worked to prioritize our most urgent needs to help those fighting this pandemic, ensure essential services continue uninterrupted and provide resources for families in our community that are facing hardship.
“I knew it was important to come to Springfield immediately to take action and support the many first responders and essential workers putting their lives on the line to protect our families. As the daughter of an ER charge nurse, I understand the many sacrifices first responders and health care professionals make every single day, and they have continued to go above and beyond as our community continues to battle this crisis.
“As many residents are facing financial insecurity as a result of the COVID-19 crisis, I worked to pass a responsible, balanced budget that helps move the state back in the right direction. The budget plan I supported secures funding for critical services like domestic violence shelters and maintains the state’s commitment to fully fund education with additional support for teachers as they work to give our kids the best education possible even through the pandemic.
“The daily life of Illinoisans across the state has changed drastically, and the reality is that we have no idea what life will look like in the coming months. To help ensure safe access to voting in the upcoming election and boost voter turnout despite the COVID-19 health emergency, I supported an expanded vote by mail program. The initiative I supported is commonsense and will help ensure that no resident has to choose between their health and exercising their right to vote by expanding access to voting by mail.
“While there is much more work to be done, my priority is to continue advocating for our families in Springfield and building a stronger Illinois to fight this crisis and move forward in a better direction.”