peters hb3582sSPRINGFIELD – Continuing his dedication to improving safety and justice in Illinois communities, State Senator Robert Peters (D-Chicago) moved a measure through the Senate that would expand certain rights guaranteed to victims of violent crimes.

“Survivors of violence and their families have a right to deal with their trauma on their own time without having to risk their livelihoods,” Peters said. “If we don’t guarantee this right, then we’re allowing trauma to beget more trauma.”

The Victims Economic Security and Safety Act entitles victims and family members of victims of domestic, sexual or gender violence in Illinois to various amounts of unpaid leave from work to deal with their trauma. House Bill 3582 extends the act to include any other type of violent crime and provides protections against discriminatory acts by employers. The legislation also allows the unpaid leave to be taken non-consecutively or as a reduced work schedule.

“Without flexibility, survivors either have to avoid dealing with their trauma, or do so in a way that risks their jobs,” Peters said. “The status quo does not and will not usher in the safety and justice in our communities that we deserve.”

The Senate approved the measure with bipartisan support. Since it was amended in the Senate, it must return to the House of Representatives for concurrence.