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Isabel’s afternoon roundup

Monday, Jun 10, 2024 - Posted by Isabel Miller

* Capitol News Illinois

Another caregiver at Choate Mental Health and Developmental Center in Anna is facing charges for abusing a patient.

A grand jury indicted Joseph A. Clark, 24, of Grand Chain, on a felony charge of aggravated battery and a misdemeanor charge of battery.

Clark pinned a Choate resident to the ground with his leg on Feb. 28, according to the charges that were filed on May 16 but not made publicly available until the end of May.

Clark has been on paid administrative leave since the incident was reported by other staff. Since criminal charges were filed, Clark will soon be suspended without pay, pending a disposition in the case, according to a written statement provided by spokesperson for the Illinois Department of Human Services, the agency that operates the facility in far southern Illinois. […]

Clark will be the 20th Choate employee charged with a felony related to misconduct and abuse at the facility in the last five years. To date, no one has received a prison sentence in those cases.

Beth Hundsdorfer recently reported a camera at the facility catching a mental health technician assaulting a patient, but it took 11 days for anyone to take action.

* Illinois Department of Human Services

Today, the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) and the Public Health Institute of Metropolitan Chicago (PHIMC) announced the launch of a new statewide initiative that supports and expands gender-affirming care.

The new Transgender and Gender Diverse (TGD) Wellness and Equity Program expands comprehensive and medically necessary care for transgender, gender-diverse, and LGBTQ+ people throughout Illinois. This program equips organizations that currently serve LGBTQ+ communities to increase their capacity to provide culturally- and medically-competent gender-affirming care.

This care will address social determinants of health, historical and contemporary trauma, and their unique impact on Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color who identify as transgender, gender-diverse, and other LGBTQ+ identities. […]

Through the TGD Wellness and Equity Program, these organizations will provide services that include:

    Training and behavioral health support
    Employing Healthcare Navigation Specialists
    Gender-affirming care training for staff
    Participation in a learning collaborative to share successes, challenges, and best practices
    Strategies to expand their medically- and culturally-appropriate gender-affirming care throughout their service areas

*** Statehouse News ***

* Ballot Access News | Illinois Legislature Passes Bill Moving Petition Deadline for Independent Candidates and the Nominees of Unqualified Parties from June to May: The bill had been introduced early this year on the subject of Crohns and Colitis Awareness, health concerns that do not relate to election law. But on May 23, the Senate deleted all the original contents of the bill and substituted various election law provisions, including the ballot access restrictions. It passed the Senate in its new version on May 24, and passed the House again on May 25. It was sent to Governor J. B. Pritzker on June 6. The news media has not reported on the bill’s ballot access restrictions. The bill does not take effect until 2025.

* Block Club | New Law Will Ensure Nearly 1 Million Asian Americans Can Access Vital State Services In Native Languages: On May 23, Illinois lawmakers passed the Language Equity and Access Act, following a rally in Springfield of more than 300 Asian American community members who protested for language justice. The act aims to transform language access across Illinois for limited English-proficient individuals by requiring state agencies to provide adequate and timely oral and written language services in more than a dozen languages. It now awaits Gov. JB Pritzker’s signature.

*** Statewide ***

* WICS | Illinois awards $6.9 million to boost urban forestry in disadvantaged areas: The Morton Arboretum announced its selection of the 22 urban forestry projects in priority communities in Illinois which receive funding through the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service, under the direction of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR). [Arboretum President and CEO Jill Koski said] reported that the organization received 61 applications requesting more than $14 million from communities meeting federal guidelines for disadvantaged areas.

*** Cook County and Suburbs ***

* WBEZ | Feds investigating last year’s massive data breach at Cook County hospital system: WBEZ obtained a copy of the subpoena last week, after suing Cook County Health in April for violating the state’s open-records law. Justice Department officials did not return messages, while the spokespeople for Pasqual and the FBI declined to comment, saying in a statement that agency policy prevents officials from commenting “on the nature of any investigation that may be occurring.”

* Sun-Times | Southwest suburban residents plead guilty in Jan. 6 case: Kelly Lynn Fontaine and Bryan Dula of Lockport were charged earlier this year and accused of spending 11 minutes inside the Capitol building that day. They are among nearly 50 known Illinois residents to face federal criminal charges connected to the attack. Fontaine and Dula each pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct and parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building, records show. Their sentencing is set for Oct. 1.

* Daily Southtown | Palos Hospital clinic brings recovery a step closer for Oak Forest double lung transplant patient: Northwestern performed the first double-lung transplant in 2020 and its Double Lung Replacement and Multidisciplinary Care program has now performed double-lung transplants on 40 patients, including Knight, at the Northwestern Medicine Canning Thoracic Institute in Chicago.

*** Chicago ***

* Crain’s | Medical debt weighs on Chicagoans even when they have health insurance: Despite 91% of Cook County’s 5 million residents having health care coverage, 13% have medical debt in collections, according to nonprofit research organization the Urban Institute. In general, half of U.S. adults are unable to pay an unexpected medical bill of $500 in full, according to recent data by KFF, a nonprofit health policy research, polling and news organization.

* Block Club | Holiday Club In Uptown Would Be Replaced With Apartments Under Plan: During the meeting, Paul Dincin, Catapult Real Estate Solutions founder, said he’d be “happy to talk to [the Holiday Club] if they’re interested in the space we have, if it fits with their business plan versus finding other space right in the area.” […] But Dincin said he wasn’t sure if it would be feasible for Holiday Club to return, given the smaller retail space available and the likelihood that demolition and construction could take up to two years.

* Crain’s | Hancock tower observation deck operator buys Signature Room space: Managing Director Nichole Benolken said 360 Chicago is “exploring a number of options for the space.” “I can confirm that we’re not planning on reopening a restaurant at this time, but beyond that, our team is in the very early development stages, and we’ll have more information to share in the coming months,” Benolken said in a statement.

* WBEZ | What’s That Building? An architectural tour of the Lakefront Trail: Built in 1916 to replace the smaller clubhouse of a private organization with a nine-hole golf course, Marshall and Fox — the architects behind the Blackstone and Drake hotels — designed this Mediterranean fantasy(South Shore Cultural Center). The Chicago Park District bought the South Shore Cultural Center in 1975. Two of the building’s most quintessentially Chicago moments are when it was used as The Palace Hotel in The Blues Brothers movie in 1980 and when it was the site of future President Barack Obama and future first lady Michelle Obama’s wedding reception in 1992.

*** Downstate ***

* Illinois Times | Lakeisha Purchase violated IDOT policy, report says: Lakeisha Purchase took part in phone calls unrelated to her job at the Illinois Department of Transportation for almost half of the time she was supposed to be working during an 18-month period in 2021 and 2022, a state report says. Purchase, 35, a former Capital Township trustee and the Springfield Ward 5 alderperson since September 2021, quit her job as an IDOT supportive services specialist on July 5, 2023, after 14 years with the department.

* WREX | RFD passengers to take flight on inaugural flight to LAX: Los Angeles is the second of two new destinations offered at RFD this year with Nashville flights being added and taking off since last month. In January, three international destinations will be added to RFD’s lineup and will offer travelers a wider range of travel opportunities.

* Rockford Register Star | Rockford to offer $500K to local manufacturer for expansion: Rockford officials are proposing an incentive package to help the family-owned Slidematic Precision Components expand its operations at 1303 and 1325 Samuelson Road. Slidematic engineers and manufactures cold-headed fasteners and provides supply-chain management for customers internationally. It is planning a 45,000-square-foot addition to its 190,000-square-foot Samuelson Road operation.

* Journal Courier | Writer Pensoneau to cover familiar topic in program on governors: “I’ve known a lot of them personally,” said Pensoneau, a statehouse reporter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch from 1965 to 1978. “I have an idea what they are really like.” Pensoneau will present “Inside Revelations of the High and Mighty,” an inside look at governors of Illinois over the past half-century, at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at Carlinville Public Library. The program is free and open to the public.

*** National ***

* Bloomberg | Ventilator-maker Vyaire goes bankrupt as COVID-19 demand wanes: The Mettawa-based provider of medical equipment filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy Sunday, listing assets of as much as $500 million and liabilities of up to $1 billion. The company said it intends to sell all its assets and is seeking approval to keep operating through the sales process. Vyaire, which develops breathing technology, experienced significantly higher demand for its products during Covid. But pandemic-related supply chain disruptions diminished the company’s cash flow, while increased competition hurt its business. Vyaire has lost over 10% of its market share in its ventilation segment since Covid infections began to wane.

       

4 Comments »
  1. - Dotnonymous x - Monday, Jun 10, 24 @ 2:48 pm:

    Reports of abuse only took 11 days…what could go wrong in 11 days?

    Clean house!


  2. - Bigtwich - Monday, Jun 10, 24 @ 3:03 pm:

    It is encouraging that Choate staff reported abuse and that a Union county grand jury acted on it. Had not ever heard that before.


  3. - JoanP - Monday, Jun 10, 24 @ 4:40 pm:

    = What’s That Building? An architectural tour of the Lakefront Trail =

    They missed the Promontory Point field house and the comfort station in Burnham Park: https://www.chicagoparkdistrict.com/media/burnham-park-dont-feed-seagulls


  4. - H-W - Monday, Jun 10, 24 @ 6:04 pm:

    To create a “shell” bill suggesting help and support for folks with Crohn’s and Colitis, and then deleting that content to insert language making it more costly for independent candidates to compete (time equals money and more time requires more money), is actually reprehensible.

    Those who suffer with Crohn’s and Colitis were used as pawns or placeholders for Democratic hegemony. Shame for suggesting you care for the chronically ill, but intentionally doing nothing for them.


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