right to yelpState Senator Steve Stadelman (D-Rockford) secured passage of legislation that protects the rights of consumers to leave honest online reviews of products and services without fear of retaliation.

The measure prevents companies and service providers from enforcing non-disparagement clauses included in sales contracts. Such clauses typically include language that prohibits consumers from leaving negative feedback about the retailer. Oftentimes, particularly online, a consumer must accept the terms of a contract before completing a purchase.

“Although I understand that businesses don’t want to be unfairly criticized, it is important to protect the right of the consumer to voice their opinion,” Stadelman said. “In many cases, people might not even realize they signed a non-disparagement agreement until a company takes action against them.”

Only two states – California and Maryland – have laws in place banning non-disparagement clauses. Illinois has general consumer protection laws in place that prohibit unfair business practices and fraud but do not specifically address non-disparagement clauses.

SB 1898 passed unanimously in the Senate and will move to the House for consideration.

Category: Press Releases

close up 1853400State Senator Steve Stadelman (D-Rockford) secured passage of legislation that will allow pharmacists to fill emergency prescriptions without a doctor’s authorization.  

Stadelman had a personal motivation for introducing the measure. His son, who was 13 at the time, realized during a family vacation that he had no insulin or needles to manage his Type 1 diabetes. Because it was a Saturday, the pharmacy they visited was unable to reach his doctor to authorize a prescription.

“This really drove home to me that getting a prescription filled quickly can be a matter of life or death,” Stadelman said. “I started to do research and saw that many other states allow emergency refills to take place.”

The legislation does not allow emergency refills of controlled substances and caps refills at 30 days.

SB 1790 passed unanimously in the Senate and will move to the House for consideration.

Category: Press Releases

SB 57State Senator Steve Stadelman (D-Rockford) secured passage of legislation today allowing domestic violence victims to continue using their cell phone plans after separating from their abusers.

“One of the reasons people stay in abusive relationships is financial dependence,” Stadelman said. “This legislation removes the roadblock of having to find the money to set up a new phone plan. Anything we can do to make it easier to leave is a positive step.”

The measure requires wireless providers to transfer the right to continue to use phone numbers on an account the victim shares with the abuser. Similar legislation was recently enacted in California, Missouri, Indiana and Wisconsin.

“As we know, cell phones have become nearly essential in modern life,” Stadelman said. “This legislation allows men and women leaving abusive situations to keep their photos, addresses, contacts and emails, and to continue using their phone to seek housing and employment.”

The measure amends current law to allow victims to petition the court for the right to continue use of a phone number as part of a petition for an order of protection.

SB 57 passed unanimously in the Senate and will move to the House for consideration.


Category: Press Releases

title 1 fundingState Senator Steve Stadelman (D-Rockford) secured passage of legislation today that will protect federal funding for the Rockford public school district.

The measure, effective July 1, ensures federal funds meant for Title 1 programs go to help low-income children rather than paying into teachers’ pensions and could free up millions of federal dollars for Rockford public schools.

“Right now, school districts are being required to use federal funds that are meant to go to students to pay down the state’s pension debt,” Stadelman said. “This disproportionately affects at-risk students in the districts that need help the most.”

The legislation allows school districts to pay into federally funded teachers’ pensions at the same rate as all other teachers, cutting the districts’ contribution rate from 45 percent to 7 percent. Individual teachers’ pensions would not be affected.

Dr. Ehren Jarrett, Rockford Public Schools Superintendent, testified in committee in favor of the legislation last month.

“What we’re advocating for is to let those federal dollars go to what the teachers and the principals in those schools say they need most, which is support for struggling students,” Jarrett said. “This is an opportunity for equity for those schools.”

Title 1 funding provides federal assistance to school districts with high percentages of low-income students to make sure their educational needs are met. Schools can use the funds for schoolwide programs or programs targeted at individual students, but they are intended to bring students up to the state’s academic standards.

SB 0195 passed unanimously in the Senate and will move to the House for consideration.

Category: Press Releases

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Contact Info

Springfield Office:
Senator 34th District
121A Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-8022
 
District Office:
200 S. Wyman St.
Rockford, IL 61101
(815) 987-7557
(815) 987-7529 FAX