Home U.S Illinois set to become first state to eliminate cash bail under sweeping...

Illinois set to become first state to eliminate cash bail under sweeping criminal justice reform law


Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker is joined by lawmakers and community advocates including state Rep. Justin Slaughter, left, and state Sen. Elgie Sims Jr., right, as he signs HB 3653, a sweeping criminal justice and police reform bill, on Monday, Feb. 22, 2021 at Chicago State University. (Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune via AP)

Illinois Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker this week signed into law a sweeping overhaul of policing and criminal justice that eliminates the cash bail system, requires police agencies to equip officers with body cameras and strictly defines use-of-force rules for law enforcement.

“In this terrible year and in the middle of a brutal viral pandemic that hurt Black people and brown people disproportionately, these lawmakers fought to address the pandemic of systemic racism,” Pritzker said during a ceremony Monday. 

Pritzker was joined by supporters of the new law, which lawmakers introduced and passed with just hours left in the January lame-duck legislative session. It received fierce opposition from some law enforcement groups. 

“We are going from protest to progress,” said state Rep. Justin Slaughter, D-Chicago, who guided the legislation through the House.


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