I believe strongly in centering the voices of stakeholders in crafting policy and often use the phrase “nothing for us without us” to reflect my belief that the best policies are crafted by those most directly impacted. My areas of legislative focus include criminal justice, reproductive justice and health care protections, and ensuring our laws secure equality for those too often neglected and ignored by our government.
"Nothing for us without us."
~Representative Kelly Cassidy
103rd General Assembly
House Bill 1384 - DV Reconstructive Surgery Act
This bill requires insurers to provide coverage for reconstructive surgery for domestic violence survivors. Effective Jan. 1, 2025, private health insurers, managed care plans and all other third-party payers cannot deny coverage for medically necessary reconstructive services that are intended to restore physical appearance for injuries sustained due to domestic violence.
House Bill 1571 - Michael Bauer Memorial Act
This bill protects against discrimination in cemetery operations. It holds cemeteries accountable to honor the wishes of the deceased over property rights. In total, it amends the Vital Records Act, the Disposition of Remains Act, and the Cemetery Protection Act. This bill passed in both houses and is awaiting the governor’s signature.
House Bill 1591 - Amends the Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act
Removes language from the Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act that prevented people from states that prohibited intermarriage from getting married in Illinois and then returning to their home state. This bill repeals the sections of the Act that requires couples to obtain a signature from an official from their previous state in order to get a marriage license in Illinois. This bill passed in both houses and was signed into law by Governor Prtizker.
House Bill 2248 - Civil Rights Remedies Restorations Act
This bill establishes that businesses receiving federal funding are not protected from the consequences of discriminatory acts. Establishes a baseline financial penalty for civil rights violations. Ensures that people with disabilities can be awarded damages in discrimination suits against entities receiving federal funding.
House Bill 2350 - Amends the Illinois Insurance Code
This bill amends the Illinois Insurance code, removing gendered language in insurance requirements for annual cervical smear or Pap smear test, as well as for annual prostate cancer screenings. Ensuring that copay free screenings are available to anyone who needs them regardless of gender.
House Bill 2464 - Amends the Illinois Vehicle Code
This bill allows for a pedestrian-controlled signal at high-risk street crossings, especially at intersections that lack traffic lights. This bill defines “pedestrian hybrid beacon” as a traffic-control device used to warn and control traffic. This bill took many years of advocating, and was inspired by our constituents, who advocated for safety precautions at street crossings. This bill passed in both houses and is awaiting the governor’s signature.
House Bill 3026 - Amends the Unified Code of Corrections
This bill clarifies various sentencing credit policies to ensure that the Illinois Department of Corrections appropriately awards earned sentence credits. Ensures that time served in county jail counts towards the minimum of the sentence served before the IDOC may award discretionary earned sentence credit.
Senate Bill 1344 - Amends the Illinois Insurance Code
This bill requires that coverage is provided to an individual or group seeking abortifacients, hormonal therapy medication, human immunodeficiency virus pre-exposure prophylaxis, and post-exposure prophylaxis drugs approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration, and follow-up services related to that coverage. This bill passed in both houses and is awaiting the governor’s signature.
Senate Bill 2013 - Amends the Illinois Affordable Housing Act
Requires that new or substantially remodeled affordable housing projects supported by the Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) must allow residents control of heating and cooling. The bill is in response to the tragedy that occurred in Rogers Park last May, where multiple women died during last year’s heat wave, due to suspected heat exhaustion. Residential buildings who received state funding will only continue to receive funding if residents are given adequate cooling in the hot months and heating in the colder months. This bill passed in both houses and is awaiting the governor’s signature.
Senate Bill 2260 - Gender Based Violence Resentencing
Expands resentencing opportunities for victims of domestic violence. A previous law meant to do this was found to be too vague, not providing the help it meant to offer, this law gives more opportunities for victims of domestic abuse, now defining it as Gender Based Violence, who committed crimes under duress, coercion, and compulsion to not be found guilty.