Gov. Pritzker signs legislation to accelerate execution of law that will protect immigrant youth

State News

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker smiles as he explains legislation he’s backing to make it easier for taxpayers to locate information about lobbyists, their clients, and campaign contributions, in his Statehouse office, Thursday, Nov. 14, 2019. The bill will also create an ethics commission to recommend other ethics measures after a federal bribery complaint against former Rep. Luis Arroyo, D-Chicago. (AP Photo/John O’Connor)

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Gov. JB Pritzker signed legislation Monday to speed a process that will allow immigrant youth who have been abused, neglected or abandoned to obtain Special J visas.

“This law creates a pathway for undocumented youth who have experienced great trauma to secure residency, aligning the laws on our books with those already in existence at the federal level,” said Pritzker. “These are children who have experienced abuse, neglect, or abandonment, children who often know no home beyond this nation. They deserve all the hope we can give them – and that starts with stability.”

The Public Act 101- 0121 was a law that was signed on July 23, but will better enable undocumented children to obtain visas by aligning state laws with existing federal laws.

“Children who need our protection deserve that protection regardless of their immigration status,” said Sen. Cristina Castro (D-Elgin), the Senate sponsor of the measure.

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