The Bi-Partisan Dream Act Strengthens Communities

Senator Durbin (D-Illinois), along with Senator Graham (R-South Carolina), has re-introduced the Dream Act, legislation to streamline the immigration process for young people who have lived in the United States since childhood. It was first introduced in 2001 and despite broad bi-partisan support, it is not yet law. The Dream Act offers lawful residence and a path to citizenship for… Read more →

Cook County Chief Judge Announces New Order Limiting Use of Monetary Bond

Chicago Appleseed and our partner Chicago Council of Lawyers applaud today’s announcement by Timothy C. Evans, Chief Judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County, that his office will direct judges to set monetary bonds only in amounts that people can pay. This move brings Cook County in line with a recent federal court decision in Harris County (Houston), Texas… Read more →

Changes in the Cook County Domestic Relations Courts

The Cook County court recently took bold steps to modernize the Domestic Relations Division and improve the system for all families moving through the divorce, paternity and child support process. Consolidation of the divorce court and parentage court went into effect on February 6, 2017 and is the culmination of many years work by a task force convened by Presiding… Read more →

Cook County State’s Attorney Announces New Policy for Bond Recommendations

On Monday, June 12th, Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx announced that her office has instituted a new policy instructing her prosecutors to recommend I-Bonds in many kinds of cases. In Illinois, I-Bonds are the form of pretrial release that does not require payment of money before release. I-Bonds are also called “personal recognizance bonds” because the person is released… Read more →

Illinois Takes Small First Step Toward Bail Reform

On June 9, 2017, Governor Rauner signed SB 2034 into law. SB 2034 covers two distinct areas of criminal law: the state RICO law and bail. First, effective immediately, it extends state RICO Act (“Illinois Street Gang And Racketeer Influenced And Corrupt Organizations Law”) for an additional 5 years.[1] Secondly and most importantly, it implements several changes to Illinois bail… Read more →