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PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
3:36pm
Wed Sep 14, 2016

Chicago City Council Roundup: Water & Sewer Tax Hike Passes, O'Hare Bonds Get Approved

From a new water and sewer tax to O'Hare bonds and TIFs, Progress Illinois rounds up highlights from Wednesday's Chicago City Council meeting. 

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
7:13am
Wed Jul 6, 2016

Job Barriers Facing Ex-Prisoners Could Cost U.S. Economy At Least $78 Billion

U.S. economic growth suffers when former prisoners and convicted felons are locked out of the labor market, a new study shows.

Employment barriers faced by former offenders resulted in the estimated loss of 1.7 million to 1.9 million workers in 2014, reducing the overall U.S. employment rate by almost 1 percentage point, according to the report from the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR).

That translates into a $78 billion to $87 billion loss in annual gross domestic product (GDP) for the United States.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
3:44pm
Tue Apr 26, 2016

Children At Risk: Protections Needed To Improve Welfare Of Youth With Incarcerated Parents

Having a parent in jail or prison can have the same impact on a child's well-being as abuse or domestic violence, according to a new report that is pushing for the expansion of support services to families affected by incarceration.

Children of incarcerated parents face increased risks of financial and emotional instability, the new study, released by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, reports.

"Incarceration breaks up families, the building blocks of our communities and nation," reads the study. "It creates an unstable environment for kids that can have lasting effects on their development and well-being."

Some 186,000 kids in Illinois, representing 6 percent of the state's child population, have a parent who has served time behind bars. Nationally, 5 million kids, or 7 percent of the child population, have had a parent in jail or prison during their childhood, according to the research, based on data from 2011 and 2012.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
3:22pm
Tue Sep 15, 2015

National Report Details 'True Cost' Of Incarceration On Families

A national report released Tuesday aims to shed light on the hidden impacts mass incarceration has on families and their economic stability, health and well-being.

Over 20 community-based organizations from across the country, including the Chicago-based Workers Center for Racial Justice (WCRJ), spent more than a year developing the report, which is based on over 1,100 surveys of formerly incarcerated people, families with incarcerated loved ones and employers.

"Everyone knows about the $80 billion that our cities and states and the federal government (spend) locking people up, but what is not known is the amount of money that we incur when ourselves and loved ones get locked up," WCRJ's Executive Director DeAngelo Bester said at a Tuesday press conference in Chicago.

Quick Hit
by Ashlee Rezin
4:32pm
Tue Oct 28, 2014

Protesters: Ferrara Candy Co. Does Not Hire African Americans (VIDEO)

African Americans are not being provided an equal opportunity for work at Ferrara Candy Company, according to a group of protesters who took their message to the company's Forest Park factory Tuesday morning.

"Ferrara Candy makes millions of dollars, particularly in the Halloween season, on the folks in this community. We want them to ensure the people who make their candy in this community are the folks that actually live in this community," said Elce Redmond, organizer with the South Austin Coalition Community Council.

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
5:31pm
Wed Oct 8, 2014

Chicago Aldermen Approve IG Measure, Washington Park TIF; Elected School Board Referendum Gets Squeezed

Progress Illinois provides highlights from Wednesday's Chicago City Council meeting.

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