CCH bussed 110 people to the State Capitol March 13 to talk to 30 legislators about homeless funding in Gov. Quinn’s new budget plan. Our community leaders traveled from Chicago, Aurora, Libertyville, Maywood, Rockford and Waukegan.
Our leaders spoke about the need to maintain funding in these safety-net programs. CCH supports much of the governor’s FY 2014 budget plan, which proposes no funding cutbacks for emergency shelter and transitional housing, homeless youth services, and a homeless prevention program that provides one-time help to families.
For the past two fiscal years, CCH successfully organized support to stop dramatic funding cuts proposed in the governor’s FY12 and FY13 budget plans, including a $4.7 million (52%) cutback to shelters and transitional housing.
This week, CCH leaders also advocated for $3 million for homeless education funding, as proposed by our Law Project and recommended in the state Board of Education budget plan.
Further cuts are possible because the governor’s budget plan is $500 million more than the revenues projected by the Illinois House.
Organizer Rachel Ramirez mobilized parents, youth and adults from Casa Central, La Casa Norte, and San Jose Obrero, all in Chicago.
Associate Organizing Director Hannah Willage and intern J.D. Klippenstein organized students who work with the Speakers Bureau, bringing several Bureau members and 50 student leaders from Loyola University and the University of Illinois-Chicago, and three Chicago Public high schools, Curie, Al Raby and Tilden.
The organizer of CCH’s Statewide Network, Jim Picchetti, mobilized leaders from seven programs:
· Aurora: Hesed House
· Libertyville: Maristella
· Maywood: West Suburban PADS
· Rockford: Carpenter’s Place and Shelter Care Ministries
· Waukegan: Eddie Washington Center & Staben House, and Independence Center
– Anne Bowhay, Media