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Illinois Ranks Poor For Personal Freedoms

(Undated)  --  If you like your personal freedoms, then Illinois may not be the best place for you to live.  A new study puts the state dead last when it comes to making sure people can enjoy life without too much government interference.  The Mercatus Study out of George Mason University reveals Illinois has strict policies on gun control, gay marriage, education, tobacco and alcohol usage, and even religious freedom.  Authors of the study say the state lost more than five percent of its population over the past decade as a result of the poor policies.

Tides Turning for Gay Marriage

(Springfield, IL)  --  Gay rights activists say the tides are turning for same sex marriage in Illinois.  Bernard Cherkosav, with Equality Illinois, says U.S. Senator Mark Kirk's support could boost the momentum behind the bill which is stalled in the Illinois House.  The bill was shy by about a dozen votes a couple weeks ago but Cherkosav says that number is quickly dwindling.  He says  several lawmakers are now saying they want to be on the right side of history, and will cast a yes vote when the bill is called on the floor.

125-Thousand Kids Abused Each Year In Illinois

(Springfield, IL)  --  State officials are encouraging people to speak up and report child abuse when they suspect something suspicious.  About 125-thousand kids are abused every year in Illinois and unfortunately, most of them suffer in silence because their cases go unreported.   DCFS Spokesman Richard Calico says it takes courage to report abuse, but doing so is as simple as calling the child abuse hotline at 1-800-25-Abuse.  Last year more than 70-thousand cases of abuse were investigated, thanks to people who weren't afraid to make the call.  

More Drama On SIU Board

(Carbondale, IL)  --  There's more drama on the SIU Board of Trustees.  State Senator Bill Haine says board member Roger Herrin tried to have himself appointed as chairman at a time when the board is facing intense scrutiny.  Controversy has surrounded the board over the past month after the State Senate refused to appoint three new board members suggested by Governor Quinn.  Haine plans to introduce a bill that would remove the entire board and start from scratch.

State Police Boosting Nighttime Patrols

(Collinsville, IL)  --  Here's a reminder for anyone driving in St. Claire or Madison Counties during the month of April.  State police are boosting their nighttime patrols in an effort to catch people driving drunk, driving without a license, not wearing a seatbelt, or violating any other rules of the road.  Police say anyone busted for DUI should be prepared to go to jail.  The nighttime patrols are designed to keep roads safe.

Police Officer Accused Of Being Drunk On The Job

(East St. Louis, IL)  --  An East St. Louis police officer quit the force after being accused of being drunk on the job.  Ricky Perry allegedly responded to a burglary and arson call smelling like alcohol back on March 24th.  It wasn't the first time he'd been accused of being drunk on the job.  He was reportedly found passed out in an unmarked patrol car back in 2007.  Perry had initially been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation, but he resigned yesterday.

King Died 45 Years Ago Today

(Undated)  --  Today marks 45 years that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was killed.  He was gunned down at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee on April 4th, 1968.  King inspired a nation to rise in support of equality and inspired Congress to pass several laws favoring minorities, including the Voting Rights Act.  Politicians all across the globe point to King's teachings when dealing with issues of inequality. 

Group Says IL Has Shortage Of Organ Donors

(Quincy, IL)  --  Illinois officials are urging people to consider becoming organ donors.  Illinois currently has a severe shortage of registered organ donors and nearly five-thousand people here are on waiting lists for healthy organs.  The organization "Gift of Hope" asks for people to come forward by visiting the website lifegoeson-dot-com.

List Honors IL Hospitals For Patient Safety

(Undated)  --  Four hospitals around Illinois are gaining attention after making a new list of the "safest" places to get health care.  The AARP's newly-released "safe hospital" list cites NorthShore University Health System in Skokie, Northwestern Memorial in Chicago, OSF Saint Joseph Medical Center in Bloomington and Rush University Medical Center in Chicago.  The four were selected for their innovative ways to protect patients from so-called "preventable errors."

Subaru Recalls Vehicles Registered In IL

(Undated)  --  Illinois is one of 20 states where certain Subaru vehicles are being recalled because of a brake line defect.  The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration announced the recall of certain 2005 to 2009 Subaru Outback and Legacy vehicles which are or have been registered in Illinois at any point.  The agency says a gap in a fuel tank protector can allow salt water to corrode the vehicle's brake line, resulting in increased chances of a crash.  For more information on the recall dial 1-888-327-4236 or go online to safercar-dot-gov.

Illinois Marathon Needs Volunteers

(Undated)  --  Officials with the Illinois Marathon say they need your help.  Folks with the marathon and the Christie Clinic say they have a shortage of volunteers for their annual 5K race April 26th and the highly-anticipated Illinois Marathon April 27th.  They need about 275 course-team volunteers and another 140 volunteers to carry out other responsibilities.  If you're interested in signing up go online to Illinoismarathon-dot-com and click on the tab that says "Volunteers."


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