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Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
3:57pm
Tue Mar 17

Report: Record-Low Number Of Jobless Americans Protected By Unemployment Insurance

The percentage of out-of-work Americans receiving benefits from state unemployment insurance (UI) programs reached a historic low in 2014, a new study shows.

According to the Economic Policy Institute's (EPI) report, the national UI recipiency rate -- the share of jobless people receiving benefits from state UI programs --  dropped to 23 percent as of last December. That's less than the previous record-low UI recipiency rate of 25 percent, which was set in September 1984.

Though researchers from the Washington, D.C.-based think tank do credit the decline in part to an improving economy, they say state UI programs "in many cases failed to assist jobless workers" after the Great Recession.

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
10:37pm
Mon Mar 16

Emanuel, Garcia Spar Over City Finances During First Debate

Progress Illinois provides highlights from the first televised debate for Chicago's mayoral runoff election between Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Jesus 'Chuy' Garcia.  

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
4:21pm
Mon Mar 16

Illinoisans Speak Out Against Rauner's Proposed Human Services Budget Cuts

A few hundred Illinoisans attended a state Senate appropriations hearing in Chicago on Monday to discuss Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner's proposed budget cuts to Department of Human Services programs. Here's a breakdown of what happened at the hearing and what some audience members have to say about the governor's fiscal plan.

Quick Hit
by Michael Joyce
12:25pm
Mon Mar 16

Undocumented Immigrants 'Come Out Of The Shadows' At Chicago Rally

The sixth annual National Coming Out of the Shadows rally took to Chicago's crowded downtown streets Saturday afternoon as revelers celebrated the city's St. Patrick's Day festivities.

The event, held by Chicago-based Organized Communities Against Deportation (OCAD), sought to highlight the struggles of undocumented immigrants at risk of deportation. The rally began with a call-and-response chant of "undocumented and unafraid!" Approximately 50 ralliers were in attendance from a broad array of ethnic backgrounds.

This year's Coming Out of the Shadows event also called on undocumented immigrants to make themselves known and mobilize, in the belief they will gain strength in numbers.

Speaking to the crowd, Antonio Gutierrez, one of the event's organizers, challenged the notion that lack of citizenship makes you any less of a citizen.

"We're all immigrants in this country," said Gutierrez, "just because you're undocumented it doesn't make you less of a human being.

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
11:10am
Mon Mar 16

Garcia Unveils Fiscal Framework For Chicago, But Revenue Specs To Come Post Election

Mayoral challenger Jesus 'Chuy' Garcia previewed his fiscal plan for Chicago Friday, outlining some $500 million in budget savings for the cash-strapped city. But the mayoral hopeful stayed mum on his plans for generating new revenue. Progress Illinois takes a look at Garcia's budget framework and what Rahm Emanuel's campaign had to say about it.

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