(SPRINGFIELD) The outbreak of Cyclospora foodborne illnesses in Illinois has increased to 243 across the state. While at least 92 of the cases have been tied to eating salads produced for McDonald’s restaurants, a new outbreak of the intestinal illness has been linked to a private event at the Evanston Golf Club in the Chicago suburb of Skokie. State health officials say while Cyclospora is not spread directly from one person to another, it can be treated with specific antibiotics, but if not treated, the illness can last for a few days to a month or longer. Most previous cases of the Cyclospora foodborne illness cases have been linked to various types of imported fresh produce, including lettuce, raspberries, snow peas, and basil.
(SPRINGFIELD) Governor Bruce Rauner has signed legislation to better protect state workers in vulnerable positions. The measure requires law enforcement agencies “to make all reasonable efforts to assist” Department of Children & Family Services workers when requested, plus it also allows officers to cross jurisdictions to provide that protection. The legislation was introduced back in February this year, a week after a DCFS worker died from injuries suffered when attacked as she was trying to take a child into protective custody. The man accused of the murder is in jail awaiting his trial in court.
(CHICAGO) A proposal by reform advocates would cut the number of women locked up in Illinois prisons by as much as half. The Chicago Tribune reports that nearly 2,300 women are currently serving prison time in Illinois while reform advocates say that the corrections system in Illinois has largely ignored the needs of female inmates, many of whom suffered years of trauma, abuse, or poverty before winding up behind bars. A plan recently announced by a 100-member all-female task force made up of experts, current & former prison officials, and formerly incarcerated women, plans to bring down the number of women in the Illinois Department of Corrections by 50 percent. The task force is planning to take a wide range of options under consideration, including the design of more social service programs and the changing of current laws.