This year in the House of Representatives, State Representative Mark Batinick (R-Plainfield) sponsored and supported a variety of legislative initiatives to help women. Be it providing more health procedures, expanding safety initiatives or changing criminal codes, ensuring that women in Illinois have better protections in place was a top priority for the Representative. The following are several of those piece of legislation:
- SB1507: creates civil remedies for “revenge porn.”
- HB2135: protects all victims of sexual assault by removing the statute of limitations on criminal sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual assault, or aggravated criminal sexual abuse regardless of the age of the victim.
- HB886: known as “Stephanie’s Law,” this would close sex offender loopholes in current Illinois statutes. It requires that offenders convicted of battery be added to the registry of sex offenders if the crime is found to be sexually motivated, and committed by someone over 21 assaulting somebody under 17. The loophole that currently exists does not include a provision for a sexually motivated battery within the misdemeanor battery statute.
- SB75: enforces stronger safety and security measures for hotel employees, by ensuring they have safety devices available to them, like panic buttons, to combat sexual harassment.
- HB2382: gives the State Police’s Division of Forensic Services laboratory the necessary funding to test rape kits as well as other types of forensic evidence. By making these appropriations permanent, this would stop things like rape kits from being used as a political football during budget standoffs.
- SB1506: creates the Dense Breast Tissue Act. If a patient’s mammogram demonstrates dense breast tissue, the provider of mammography services shall notify the patient.
- SB162: requires insurance companies to cover comprehensive ultrasound screenings if a mammogram demonstrates heterogeneous or dense breast tissue or when medically necessary as determined by a physician licensed. Frequently a follow up mammogram is required to monitor a condition or potential condition, and the increasing cost of deductibles should not be a deterrent to follow up mammograms.