lightford051713SPRINGFIELD – Families collecting child support may soon be able to rely on more consistent and helpful payments thanks to new legislation passing through the Senate today. The measure would allow families collecting child support with one child to receive the first $100 in a month and families with two children to receive the first $200 in a month without that money determining the amount of a family's assistance grant (or TANF).

“Through raising the amount of money a needy family can receive without affecting their assistance eligibility, we are providing single mothers and fathers in Illinois with greater ability to care for their families,” said Senate Assistant Majority Leader Kimberly Lightford (D – Maywood), sponsor of the legislation.

Right now, there exists an economic disincentive to pay child support. By requiring a non-custodial parent to pay such a large amount of child support, while the receiving family only receives a marginal benefit, the receiving family loses out on other assistance that they desperately need. And a consistent child support payment is among the strongest indicators of families leaving temporary assistance through TANF.

“Receiving child support should not hinder a family’s ability to provide for that child,” said Sen. Lightford. “This is sometimes the case in Illinois right now. Allowing struggling mothers and fathers greater access to temporary assistance and a more reliable level of child support, will undoubtedly improve the likelihood that a family’s need for government-funded assistance is indeed temporary.”  

The measure, Senate Bill 730, now goes to the House of Representatives for further discussion.

Category: News

lighford with panel2 MHTThanks to all who attended this month’s Mental Health Town Hall in Forest Park, making it a great success! The event was an excellent time of discussion and illumination on a subject that needs our whole community’s attention. We had over 110 people in attendance who heard from a host of professionals representing the mental health community.

 

This event was the first series of our initial connection and the evening proved to be engaging and connections were made. We discussed how mental illness is colorblind and that we need to make sure everyone across our communities is educated on how to take care of our physical and mental health.

 

Please support Senate Bill 565, an effort to reduce mental health stigmas and improve the overall health of communities across the state.  I look forward to having your support on this legislation.

Category: News

Join me for an evening to honor grandparents raising grandchildren as we recognize outstanding grandparents who, everday, are exemplifying the pure essence of "parenting the second time around." The event will have food, entertainment, information on available resources and, of course, an awards ceremony for these deserving grand parents.

Read the flier below for more details and click on the nomination form to nominate yourself (if you are a second-time parent) or another deserving grandparent to be recognized at this special event.

 

Grandparents Raising Grandchildren 2015

2015 Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Nomination Form r Page 12015 Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Nomination Form Page 2

Category: News

2015 has already brought some great memories and moments with it. Just since the beginning of this year, Senator Lightford has felt privileged to be a part of so many great causes and initiatives, and she has had the opportunity to meet many wonderful people along the way that have worked hard to improve our communities and nation as a whole. Luckily, we were able to capture some of these great moments and accomplishments in photos with the Senator and people like you who have largely been responsible for progressing our vibrant communities and our great state.

 alzheimers day 1alzheimers day 2

-              Earlier this month, the Senator stopped to talk with advocates from the Alzheimer’s Association in the Capitol and discuss the importance of Alzheimer’s research and awareness.

TCART 1

-              The Transportation Construction Apprenticeship Readiness Training program (TCART) is a crucial initiative sponsored by Senator Lightford through IDOT that creates transportation job opportunities for otherwise untrained job seekers. The Senator is pictured here with Austin People Action Center (APAC) Executive Director Cynthia Williams and some apprentices in the program as they advocate for funds at the Capitol after the governor's budget address.

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Category: News

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