September 2022 Newsletter

The big news from the month of August is that the 12th district gained a new constituent! My husband Patrick and I welcomed our daughter, Mary Pearl, to the family. We are overjoyed, and PJ is handling his promotion to big brother well.

Ahead of the legislative veto session in November, I recently introduced HB 5779, which not only reaffirms someone’s right to make their own reproductive health decisions, but ensures individuals have the right to make their own decisions about the egg, sperm, or embryos used or created during assisted reproductive technology for the purpose of in vitro fertilization (IVF).

I also introduced HB 5793, which clarifies the Illinois statute to allow patients enrolled in an HMO to access in-network services and providers without actively obtaining a referral from the primary care physician prior to obtaining those services. The elimination of the referral requirement will remove barriers to access important health care services.

In the coming months, I will continue working with my colleagues to identify ways we can help address the issues facing Illinois families.

Monkeypox Update

On August 18th, the Chicago Department of Public Health announced the arrival of an additional 20,000 Monkeypox (MPV) vaccines that were distributed to clinics across the city. With the increase of vaccine availability, second dose appointments are now available for those who received their first MPV dose more than 28 days ago.

The Illinois Department of Public Health recently updated the eligibility requirements for the MPV vaccine. Please see below to review the eligibility requirements.

Visit for more information.

On August 24th, President Joe Biden announced federal relief for student loan borrowers. The plan includes up to $20,000 in loan forgiveness, one final extension of the student loan pause through December 31st, 2022, and a cap repayment at 5% of your monthly income. Read More.

In the Community

National Night Out

My office stopped in at the 19th Chicago Police Department’s National Night Out event! Thank you to everyone who came out to say hello and show support for our local law enforcement.

Upcoming Events

Join CASA of Cook County, Sen. Sara Feigenholtz, Sen. Greg Harris, Sen. Robert Martwick, Sen. Mike Simmons, Rep. Kelly Cassidy, Rep. Lindsey LaPointe, Rep. Ann M. Williams, and me TONIGHT at 6:30 pm for an informational webinar to learn about how to become a court appointed special advocate. Learn More.

44th Ward Shred Event

Join Sen. Sara Feigenholtz, Alderman Tom Tunney, and me for our Fall Paper Shredding Event! We will be at the 44th Ward Office (3223 N Sheffield Ave) on September 10th from 9am – noon.

The 17th Annual Lakeview East Festival of the Arts is taking place on September 10th and 11th. The festival will feature more than 150 artists, music, food, and family activities. I look forward to seeing you there!

GCNA Park Clean Up

Join the Chicago Parks Foundation and the Gold Coast Neighbors Association for the upcoming “Pitch in for the Parks” on September 17th from 9am – 11am at the southern end of Lincoln Park. The initiative brings together volunteers in the community to help keep one of Chicago’s most beloved parks clean. Register Here.

GCNA Fall Frolic

Join Gold Coast Neighbors Association for their Fall Frolic event on September 21st! The event, hosted at Pippin’s Tavern, will feature a variety of spirits and a spread of appetizers that highlight Pippin’s new made-from-scratch menu. Make sure to RSVP by September 16th. RSVP Here.

Community Updates

The Illinois Secretary of State’s office has extended expiration dates for driver’s licenses, ID cards and learner’s permits until December 1, 2022.

The Office of Emergency Management and Communications (OEMC) recently introduced the Private Sector Camera Initiative. The program will allow homeowners, condominiums, and businesses to link their private exterior cameras with OEMC and Homeland Security Directors to create additional points of contact during an emergency throughout Chicago. Learn More.

The City of Chicago launched the Home and Business Protection Rebate Program to provide any Chicagoan, business owner, or anyone who leases/owns a vehicle registered within the city to receive reimbursement for security technology. The program will cover a portion of the cost of outdoor security cameras, one year of video cloud storage, outdoor motion sensor lighting, and vehicle GPS trackers. Apply Here.

PAWS Chicago Partnership

We have a new PAWS Chicago pal to introduce for September: Meet Sparrow!

Sparrow is a nine year old Labrador Retriever mix who loves to play tug and is extremely affectionate. This sweet girl is very smart and eager to master new skills. She knows how to sit, lay down, stay, and shake. Being home alone isn’t an issue for Sparrow; she’s happy to hang out on the couch during the day and greet you when you return.

If you are interested in adopting Sparrow (or any of her friends), check out PAWS Chicago for more information.

As always, please reach out to my office with any questions or comments.

Wishing you a happy and safe beginning to your fall!