SPPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Legislation supported by state Rep. Justin Slaughter, D-Chicago, to address disparities in health outcomes in communities of color and create a more equitable health care system was recently signed into law by the governor.
“We have known for decades that systemic racism exists in our health care system, and the COVID-19 pandemic has spotlighted that fact in grim detail,” said Slaughter. “Too often our pain is dismissed, and we are not taken seriously by our health care providers, and it is past time to address the biases and inequities that result in severe health disparities.”
The Slaughter-backed House Bill 158 serves as one of the four pillars of the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus’ legislative agenda This impactful legislation will combat systemic racism in Illinois’ health care system by creating an Anti-Racism Commission, prohibiting the closure of hospitals during a pandemic, requiring implicit bias training for all medical professionals and providing additional funding to address disparities in infant mortality.
“This legislation takes critical steps forward in addressing systemic racism and creating a better future for our families,” said Slaughter. “I am proud of Governor Pritzker and my colleagues in the Illinois General Assembly for working together to pass meaningful reforms that will help break down barriers to the health services every resident needs.”