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Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
5:53pm
Tue Mar 8

New Americans Hit The Polls In Chicago As Immigrant Advocates Gear Up For Anti-Trump Protest

A few dozen newly naturalized American citizens living in Chicago voted Tuesday afternoon for the first time in a U.S. election, casting ballots during the early voting period for the March 15 Illinois primary.

Representatives from the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR) assisted the new Americans of Polish, Irish and Mexican descent in the naturalization and voter registration process.

ICIRR representatives led the group on a march in downtown Chicago that started at the Dirksen Federal Building, where the long-term immigrants were naturalized as new American citizens. Afterward, the group headed to the Chicago Board of Elections. There, the new Americans registered to vote and voted early.

"Fortunately, we have early voting and grace period registration to facilitate people who are just getting naturalized now a few days before the primary to be able to still have the opportunity to vote," said ICIRR's Fred Tsao. "It used to be that if you missed the voter registration deadline four weeks before the election, you were out of luck."

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
2:19pm
Thu Nov 13, 2014

'Chuy' Garcia Talks Race, Inequality In Chicago; Supports Graduated State Income Tax

Chicago mayoral candidate and Cook County Commissioner Jesus "Chuy" Garcia stressed his support for a graduated state income tax at a Thursday morning University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) panel discussion on race and inequality.

Garcia said property taxes, which are a major source of revenue for public education in the city and state, are "very regressive in terms of how they affect the general population" and are "not the best source to fund schools."

"A fairer system of taxation would be a graduated state income tax, or something that is more progressive tied to an income tax," Garcia said in a follow-up with reporters after the talk, which was sponsored by UIC's Great Cities Institute. "I think that is a much more sustainable funding source for schools, for human services and things of that nature. I think it's one that we really need to look at. States that have that type of progressive taxation tend to have better-funded school systems and less disparities in education."

Quick Hit
by Ashlee Rezin
4:39pm
Mon Aug 25, 2014

Education Activists Call On Emanuel To Keep Dyett Open, Demand More Input In School Reforms (VIDEO)

Education activists on Monday renewed their call to keep Bronzeville’s Walter H. Dyett High School open beyond 2015. The group also allege that Chicago Public Schools (CPS) officials are phoning Dyett’s few existing students and urging them to transfer because the school may be shuttered earlier than planned.

The demonstrators also called on the Emanuel administration to support more community involvement in CPS school reforms.

“When they get these schools, they get our communities,” said Jitu Brown, national director for the Journey for Justice Alliance.

The education activists, led by Brown and the Kenwood Oakland Community Organization (KOCO), held a press conference Monday at City Hall and requested a meeting with Mayor Rahm Emanuel, in the hopes he would intervene on the school’s closure and support turning Dyett into a "global leadership and green technology" open-enrollment high school.

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
5:01pm
Tue Feb 18, 2014

UIC Faculty Kick Off Two-Day Strike For 'Fair, Equitable' Contract

Members of the faculty union at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) hit the picket lines Tuesday as part of a two-day strike for a "fair and equitable" contract. Progress Illinois was there for the union's morning rally. 

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
1:42pm
Fri Dec 6, 2013

UIC Faculty Union Votes To Authorize Strike; Contract Negotiations Continue

Union members of the University of Illinois at Chicago United Faculty (UICUF) voted this week to authorize a strike. Union officials, however, say they will continue contract negotiations with the university's administration through early January, with the help of a federal mediator, in an effort to avoid a walkout.

"We will only take strike action once every other avenue of influence has been exhausted and the bargaining team believes there is no other way to make members’ views clear," the union wrote on its website before the strike authorization vote, which occurred Monday through Thursday of this week.

About 79 percent of the union's 800 members participated in the vote this week, with over 95 percent saying they backed the option to strike, if necessary, for a fair contract, union leaders said.

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