Sims website photo

CHICAGO—State Senator Elgie R. Sims, Jr. (D-Chicago) issued the following statement in response to testimony from Illinois Department of Public Health Director Nirav Shah stating that gun violence is a public health crisis:

“I am glad Director Shah agrees with me that the level of gun violence plaguing our communities is unacceptably high and is a public health crisis requiring our immediate attention.  Now that we can agree that gun violence is in fact a health crisis, Gov. Rauner and the Department of Public Health need to allocate funds and start research on the matter so we can figure out how to best address this epidemic affecting our communities.

“We continue to see tragedies across our state and nation resulting from gun violence. Three people were killed and at least seven were wounded in shootings over last weekend in the city of Chicago, and on Sunday, an Illinois resident took the lives of four unsuspecting victims at a Waffle House in Nashville, Tennessee.

It is time for us to address the root causes of gun violence as opposed to bowing to the whims of the gun lobby, so we can do everything possible to prevent gun violence from continuing to harm our communities.”

Category: Press Releases

04262018KS2985SPRINGFIELD—Businesses along Illinois’ borders will be able to better take advantage of state resources thanks to legislation that passed the Senate today.

State Senator Elgie R. Sims, Jr. (D-Chicago) is the sponsor of Senate Bill 3285, which aims to help businesses located in Illinois identify existing and often underused state resources.

“Running a business is hard work, and it’s important that we make it easier for business owners to figure out what state resources are available to help them and their businesses be successful,” said Sims. “It is necessary for our state to have an economic development plan to attract new businesses, but it is equally important that we have a plan to help Illinois’ current businesses grow and be successful. This legislation will help ensure Illinois businesses are able to compete with businesses in neighboring states.”

SB 3285 directs the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity to create a strategy to assist cities, towns and villages located along the borders of Illinois. The information would be made available to Illinois businesses and the general public on the Department’s website.

“This legislation will not only help border communities, but the measure could help and potentially prevent businesses throughout the state from leaving,” said Sims. “As I talk to entrepreneurs in my district, it is clear they want a plan to help them compete with their out-of-state neighbors and this legislation will help businesses throughout our state.”

The legislation passed the Senate by a vote of 54-0 and moves to the House for consideration.

Category: Press Releases

Sims Presser

SPRINGFIELD—Many mothers across the state struggle to use the court system in Illinois because they lack a place to breastfeed and pump.

State Sen. Elgie R. Sims, Jr. (D-Chicago) passed Senate Bill 3503 out of the Senate today. The legislation requires circuit courts to have a lactation room.

“Mothers should not have to worry about where they’ll be able to pump and breastfeed while they’re working or visiting our courthouses. A simple solution is to provide them with space to pump and feed their children so they can return to court,” said Sen. Sims.

The legislation stipulates that the rooms be located outside of restrooms, and they must include a chair, table, electrical outlet and a sink with running water.

One mother from Wilmette has faced obstacles working as a lawyer and not having a lactation room.

“After maternity leave in 2016, I was excited to argue a dispositive motion alone. I asked personnel where I could pump and was told the restroom. Assuming perhaps there was a lounge in the ladies’ room, I checked it out. Not only was it merely a restroom, but there were no plugs for me to use,” said Gail Schnitzer Eisenberg.

This is a problem many mothers who are nursing face. Oftentimes, not having a lactation room forces them into uncomfortable or inconvenient circumstances.

“I asked for an alternative accommodation and was told I could use the cafeteria and just face the wall. After an uncomfortable but successful morning, I ended up driving to my grandmother’s home in Lincolnshire to pump,” said Schnitzer Eisenberg.

State Rep. Kelly Cassidy is the chief House sponsor.

“My hope is that we move this bill as soon as possible. No one – especially a nursing parent – should be forced to choose between doing their civic responsibility as a juror and being able to pump breast milk for an infant.  We need to get this proposal enacted into law to protect parents throughout Illinois,” said Rep. Cassidy.

Senate Bill 3503 passed the Senate 54-0 and moves to the House for consideration.

Category: Press Releases

Sims Image

SPRINGFIELD—Illinois colleges and universities, particularly institutions like Chicago State University (CSU) would be further devastated by Gov. Bruce Rauner’s proposed budget, which aims to shift hundreds of millions of dollars in pension and health care costs to state universities.

CSU enrolls approximately 7,000 students on the South Side of Chicago, including the 17th District represented by State Sen. Elgie R. Sims, Jr. (D-Chicago). As a result of the governor’s budget crisis, CSU experienced enrollment declines, increased maintenance costs and other challenges. 

“We will not stand by as this governor tries to shift $101 million in pension costs onto our state universities,” Sims said. “This will only lead to higher tuition costs and add a burden that students and families who seek a better education through Chicago State can’t bear right now.”

CSU’s enrollment dropped by 33 percent from 2015 to 2017. Only 118 students started as new full-time freshmen at the school last fall.

The governor’s plan would saddle universities with $105 million in new health care costs.

“Enough is enough. We have to make Chicago State University, Olive-Harvey College and all state universities and colleges a priority to prevent the further out-migration of students and to restore financial stability to these great institutions,” Sims said. “I will fight along with my colleagues to save our schools and help provide the crucial resources needed to revive them from the budget mess the governor created.”

Category: Press Releases

Small Business Tours

Internship Opportunities

eNewsletter & Texting Alert Sign-up

  1. First Name(*)
    Invalid Input
  2. Last Name(*)
    Invalid Input
  3. Cell Phone
    Invalid Input
  4. Your Email(*)
    Please let us know your email address.
  5. Invalid Input

    By selecting the “Opt-in Checkbox” and then clicking "Submit" you agree to (Terms Of Use) | (Privacy Policy) and to receive texts from Senator Sims at your mobile number. Message and data rates may apply. Message frequency varies.

Facebook Instagram Twitter

Find Your Legislator

Office Info

Chicago Office:
8233 S. Princeton
Chicago, IL 60620
PHONE: 773.933.7715
TEXT: 773.839.4737

Springfield Office:
218 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
PHONE: 217.782.3201