SPRINGFIELD, IL – In light of recent attacks on law enforcement personnel and other first responders, State Sen. Paul Schimpf (R-Waterloo) is sponsoring “Blue Lives Matter” legislation to help protect law enforcement, correctional officers, and other first responders from being victimized by hate crimes.
“As a former military prosecutor, I understand that we have a duty to help protect our nation’s first responders. Police, correctional officers, and other first responders – all face very hazardous duties and we must make every effort to ensure their safety,” Schimpf said. “I want my district’s correctional officers, police, firefighters and EMS crews to all know I have their backs.”
The recent tragic shooting incidents in Louisiana and Texas have magnified the incredible burdens that have been placed on emergency personnel in recent years. Acts of violence against police, correctional officers and other first responders are starting to increase to higher levels not seen in modern years.
Senate Bill 1380 adds peace officers, correctional institution employees, probation parole officers, firefighters, and emergency medical services personnel to the listing of protected classes under the Illinois Hate Crimes statutes. The legislation applies to local, state, and federal public safety professionals.
Illinois Hate Crimes statutes already exist to protect disabled, racial, religious, national origin, sexual orientation populations.
Senate Bill 1380 is currently waiting to be assigned to committee for a legislative hearing.