social services

Illinois lawmakers continued the fight over the 2-year-long budget impasse in front of rape victims, sexual assault survivors, and people recovering from addiction.

Budget Impasse Hampering Social Services

Jun 8, 2017
Tamie Yost

People who rely on social services begged Illinois state lawmakers to pass a budget during a hearing. Lawmakers heard from rape victims, sexual assault survivors, and people recovering from drug addictions. Social services that serve those people have not been paid by the state in more than 6 months because of the ongoing political fight. Though their testimony didn’t seem to change any positions on the budget impasse.

Sixty one social service agencies suing the State of Illinois over the budget impasse got their day in court today.  Providers of addiction treatment and rape counseling sued the state for payment.  A Cook County judge ruled they don’t have to be paid if there is no budget.  So those groups appealed.

Illinois Issues: LGBT In The Time Of Trump

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As rapid-fire change comes at the federal level, advocates want  to keep Illinois' status as one of the leading states in offering protections.

Alex McCray didn’t want to believe Donald Trump had won the election. In the words of the transgender nursing student from downstate Sherman: “I was hoping it was all just one terrible nightmare. It felt like my rights were being ripped out right from underneath me.”


Democrats in the Illinois House of Representatives Thursday passed a plan to send more than $800 million to human services and universities. They call it a “lifeline” for programs facing catastrophe.

Mr.choppers / Flickr/Creative Commons


Since Illinois’ temporary spending plan ended in December, even more services are disappearing. One is state aid to provide funerals for families that can’t afford them.


Drew Edwards became a funeral director in Danville in the early nineties. Back then, when a family didn’t have the money to pay for their loved one’s funeral, the state would provide help.

Court Appointed Special Advocates of Peoria County are looking to increase the number of children they serve.


Attorneys for the State of Illinois are fighting a lawsuit from social service agencies that weren’t paid during the year-long budget impasse - even though they contracts to do that work.

There was no full state budget for 12 months.

Until June.

But the temporary, stopgap budget approved, only partially funds social service agencies…

Even though they had contracts to care for the elderly or help victims of sexual assault.

Daryl Scott / Throwin'Wrenches

Illinois has operated without a state budget for nine months. This means some things are getting paid for. And others - aren’t. Today, a story of three generations of one family who are impacted by the lack of a state budget. Illinois Public Radio’s Tony Arnold reports.

Pearl Mullen is a grandmother. And for two years, she’s been taking care of two of her 15 grandkids. When the 8-year-old sees his mom, Mullen says she can’t pull him away.

Illinois Senate Democrats passed a $3.8 billion funding bill for colleges and social services despite Republican objections that the state doesn't have the money to fulfill the proposal's promises. 

IL House Passes Higher Ed, Social Service Spending

Mar 4, 2016

The Illinois House has passed legislation to pay nearly $4 billion for higher education and social services - without the money to back it up.


Many Illinois residents likely go about their days, without feeling any direct impact of the state's budget impasse. Some may not even realize there is no budget. Decisions by lawmakers and judges have kept money flowing to certain areas, but agencies left out of those deals are getting increasingly desperate. 

Thousands of senior citizens and persons with disabilities are waiting to learn: Will Illinois change how it determines who qualifies for state aid, and what kind of services are provided?  As the state's budget gridlock continues, it's one of the areas Governor Bruce Rauner tried to cut back. But legislators, including a handful of Rauner's fellow Republicans, voted to prevent that.

Illinois’ budget impasse is getting the attention of more and more students at Northern Illinois University.  Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner visits DeKalb tonight to speak to members of the County’s Economic Development Corporation.

Casino towns outside Chicago are feeling the sting of a lack of a state budget because they're not receiving their share of gambling tax revenues.

The Illinois Senate has overwhelmingly approved restoring $26 million in social service and public health grants that Gov. Bruce Rauner had frozen. 

Governor Bruce Rauner's decision to cancel grants to some social services has upset advocates.  The move is being done to help close a budget gap.