Almost 100 organizations and dozens of politicians have endorsed the Illinois Women March on Springfield event Tuesday, April 25. Coming the first day that legislators are back to work for the final weeks of the Spring session, the march is focused on dozens of progressive bills, and the passing of a responsible budget in Illinois.
The day begins at noon with a rally at the Lincoln Statue outside the Capitol Building. Among the scheduled speakers are elected officials and constituents impacted by legislation being proposed. Speakers include State Comptroller Susana Mendoza; Rev. Jesse Jackson, Sr.; state Sens. Mattie Hunter and Heather Steans; state Reps. Sara Feigenholtz, Litesa Wallace, Kelly Cassidy and Will Guzzardi; Khadine Bennett of the ACLU; Planned Parenthood's Brigid Leahy; William McNary of Citizen Action Illinois; Maaria Mozaffar from CAIR-Chicago; Mony Ruiz-Velasco of Illinois Coalition for Immigrant & Refugee Rights; and Alice Johnson of the Illinois Nurses Association.
Following the rally there will be a march around the Capitol Complex, and then lobbying inside. At 2:30 p.m. there will be a final rally in the rotunda, with speakers including gubernatorial candidates Sen. Daniel Biss, Ald. Ameya Pawar and J.B. Pritzker.
Deborah Lane, a union leader with Amalgamated Transit Unit 241/308, will be the featured singer at both events.
The list of bills people can choose to lobby state reps and senators on include women's health and choice, labor issues including the Fight for $15, protecting childcare and homecare programs, immigration, homelessness, criminal legal reform, the environment, LGBTQ, gun safety efforts, healthcare, economics, education, the ERA and passing a responsible budget in Illinois.
The complete agenda, with more bills expected, is available on the March website: www.illinoiswomenmarchonspringfield.org .
"This march includes a wide range of groups, including unions, women's groups, grassroots activists and more," said organizers. "While many groups have their own individual agendas, this is an effort to build bridges and lobby across interest lines. Together we are more powerful."
Illinois Women March on Springfield is co-chaired by Jaquie Algee ( SEIU Healthcare and Women's March on Chicago ); Tracy Baim ( Windy City Times and Pride Action Tank ); Jennifer Camille Lee ( Action Illinois and Women Rising-Illinois ); and Jessica Scheller ( Women's March on Chicago ).
The program will start at noon with a rally in front of the Lincoln Statue at the Capitol Building, followed by a march around the capitol complex, and lobbying elected officials inside. At 2:30 p.m., there will be a final rally in the rotunda, including next steps on organizing support for the legislation still pending in Springfield. People are encouraged to make April 25 appointments now with their representatives and senators, and lobby for legislation from now until the end of May, when this session ends.
Available on site April 25 will be thousands of pink post cards, which individuals can use to send or drop off a message to their elected officials on legislation they support. The website has printable and shareable post cards and social media, so people can lobby in advance for bills.
The website also has a process where organizations and elected officials can join the effort. The site also has transportation suggestions, including some free buses, and legislative tips.
The Champion partners of the march are: Action Illinois, Indivisible Illinois, Pride Action Tank, SEIU-Healthcare IL and IN, Windy City Times, Women Rising — Illinois, Women's March on Chicago, and Chicago Women Take Action. Funding support provided by Women's March on Chicago, Alphawood Foundation, Chicago Foundation for Women, Crossroads Fund, SEIU Healthcare and Woods Fund.
Other partners for the March include the Planned Parenthood, the ACLU, Illinois NOW, CAIR-Chicago, Chicago Teachers Union, Equality Illinois, Amalgamated Transit Union 308 ( ATU ), AFSCME, G-PAC, Citizen Action, OFA, Mujeras Latinas en Accion, Fight for $15 Chicago, National Immigrant Justice Center, Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law, Women Employed, Women's March Illinois, Illinois Federation of Teachers, Lambda Legal, and the YWCA of Metropolitan Chicago. See many more online.
Website: www.illinoiswomenmarchonspringfield.org/ .
Facebook: www.facebook.com/Illinois-Women-March-on-Springfield-1293918460687078/ .
Facebook event: www.facebook.com/events/1411568288899392/ .