The Cook County Department of Planning and Development is now accepting applications for Community Development Block Grants and Emergency Solutions Grants. Municipalities, government agencies and non-profits are eligible.

Please click here for more information and to apply.

CHICAGO - After learning about the depth of the truancy crisis in Chicago’s public schools and how it cheats children out of an education and decreases the amount of state aid flowing to schools in desperate need of resources, I decided to act. I sponsored legislation forming the Truancy in Chicago Public Schools Task Force to study why so many CPS students are not making it to school and how we can reverse this alarming trend before more children miss out on the educational opportunities they need to succeed.

The task force has met to discuss the problem and existing approaches to it. Now it’s your turn to tell us what is working, what is not working and what you believe could work to keep young people in class in your community. During the next three months, we will hold three public hearings and gather testimony to use in formulating our recommendations. All hearings are accessible to persons with disabilities, and translators will be present for our Spanish-speaking neighbors. Please contact my office at (773) 224-2830 for more information or if you require any other accommodations in order to participate in this vitally important process.

Truancy Task Force Public Hearings EnglishTruancy Task Force Public Hearings Spanish

Heartland AllianceSPRINGFIELD - Senator Collins joined Kimberly Drew and Amy Terpstra of the Heartland Alliance, commissioner Al Ridley and Ashley Lepse (Office of the Governor) at an informational breakfast sponsored at the Capitol by the Commission on the Elimination of Poverty. This group of state officials and others on the front lines of fighting poverty are working to develop and recommend policies that break the cycle of extreme poverty.

The Commission addresses challenges such as shortages of affordable housing, food insecurity and poor nutrition, barriers to health care access, unemployment, underemployment and the lack of high-quality, affordable child care. This spring, Sen. Collins is sponsoring legislation giving the Commission flexibility to set additional goals and expand its mission as needed.

Sen. Collins, who was appointed to the Commission last year, is known for her efforts to bring fresh produce to “food deserts,” help vulnerable people stay in their homes and curb the violence that too often accompanies generational poverty.

To read the Commission’s annual findings and recommendations, please visit its website.

020414 js 306Chicago - This Monday, Holy Cross Hospital will host a FREE Affordable Care Act event where you can receive enrollment information and assistance.

Walk-ins are welcome, but appointments are preferred. To schedule your appointment, please call (773) 884-9350.

What: President’s Day ACA event – enroll in Medicaid or a health insurance plan that fits your budget
When: Monday, Feb. 17 from noon to 7 p.m.
Where: Holy Cross Hospital, North Lobby, 2701 W. 68th St., Chicago

In order to enroll in a health plan, you must bring:

  • Social security numbers for all family members (or documents indicating immigration status)
  • Driver’s license or other state-issued ID
  • Rental lease or utility bill
  • A copy of your 2012 tax return or proof of income (W-2 form, documentation of unemployment or disability, documentation of social security benefits or other retirement income received)
  • Policy numbers for any current health insurance coverage you may have, whether or not you are covered through your employer.


En Espanol

Chicago - Este lunes, el hospital Holy Cross patrocinara un evento GRATIS donde se puede recibir información y asistencia para inscribirse para seguro medico conforme a la nueva ley de salud.

Todos son bienvenidos, pero se prefieren citas. Para programar su cita, llame al (773) 884-9350.

Qué: Evento del Día de los Presidentes para inscribirse en Medicaid o un plan de seguro medico que se ajuste a tu presupuesto
Cuándo: Lunes 17 de febrero, de 12-7 p.m.
Lugar: Holy Cross Hospital, Sala de Entrada Norte, 2701 W. 68th St., Chicago

Para inscribirse en un plan de seguro medico se requieren los siguientes materiales:

  • Los números de seguro social de todos los miembros de tu familia (o documentos que indican estado migratorio)
  • Licencia de manejo o otra forma de identificación emitida por el estado
  • Contrato de renta o factura de servicios públicos
  • Una copia de tu declaración de impuestos del 2012 o comprobante de ingresos (formulario W-2, documentación de desempleo o incapacidad, documentación beneficios de seguro social o otros ingresos de jubilación recibidos) 
  • Los números de póliza para cualquier cobertura de seguro medico actual, si estas o no estás cubierto a través de su empleador

Contact Info

Chicago Office:
1155 W. 79th St.
Chicago, IL 60620
(773) 224-2830

Springfield Office:
M114 Capitol
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-1607


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