From Equality Illinois
Statement from Equality Illinois Deputy Director Mony Ruiz-Velasco on passage by the Illinois General Assembly of essential legislation to protect patients, providers, and families seeking and providing reproductive healthcare and gender-affirming healthcare:
We are excited House Bill 4664 passed the General Assembly tonight and is on its way to the desk of Governor Pritzker. Illinois is making history as one of the first states to further protections for patients, providers, and families who access reproductive healthcare and gender-affirming healthcare.
LGBTQ+ communities across the country are under attack. Trans people in particular are in urgent need of protection and access to the health care they need and deserve, including abortion and gender-affirming care. This legislation ensures essential protections and access.
We applaud Senator Villanueva, Representative Cassidy, President Harmon, Speaker Welch, and Governor Pritzker for their leadership and perseverance to protect providers, patients, and families in Illinois and those who may come to our great state seeking reproductive healthcare and gender-affirming care and protection from anti-equality, anti-choice states. Thank you for ensuring that Illinois keeps moving forward.
We also appreciate our deep partnership with the providers who care for patients and families and who we advocated with for this important legislation, including Planned Parenthood Illinois Action and Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri. We are humbled to be in this ongoing fight with you to advance human rights and access to affirming healthcare.
From Rep. Kelly Cassidy:
SPRINGFIELD (January 10, 2023)—The following is a statement from Rep. Kelly Cassidy, lead sponsor of HB4664, a sweeping new legislative package to expand and protect reproductive rights, including access to abortions, in Illinois:
"In the face of grave threats to the rights to privacy, reproductive care and bodily autonomy of Americans everywhere, Illinois once again has stepped up. With this legislation, today, we are ensuring that Illinois will continue to serve the thousands of people traveling to our state every month to receive abortions and other reproductive and gender-affirming health care, which they can no longer access in their home states.
"I thank my colleagues on the Reproductive Rights and Dobbs Decision Working Group who worked with singular focus to craft this legislation, including Leader Greg Harris, Leader LaToya Greenwood, Representatives. Lakesia Collins, Terra Costa Howard, Margaret Croke, Dagmara Avelar, Anna Moeller and Ann Williams. I am grateful to Sen. Celina Villanueva, a fierce champion and relentless voice for reproductive justice in the Senate. And I salute Speaker Welch, Senate President Harmon, and Governor Pritzker for their continued commitment to lead us in the protection of reproductive and gender affirming health care in this state.
"Finally, we all owe a debt of gratitude to the heroic activists and providers across our state who have continued to show up in exceedingly difficult circumstances and provide needed care, all while simultaneously advocating for stronger protections and additional funding in Springfield."