Organizers Nasir Blackwell and Aaron Siebert-Llera recently traveled to Springfield to meet with legislators and present amendments to the Illinois violent offender registry. IMAN’s goal in raising these critical changes is to create a fairer, more logical system that allows registrants to challenge the legitimacy of their placement in the database.
The Child Murderer and Violent Offender Against Youth Registry Act first passed in 2006, forcing returning citizens already facing barriers to re-entering society in a dignified manner to annually register in a statewide database. In 2012, this law evolved into the current Murderer and Violent Offender Against Youth Registry—after the passage of “Andrea’s Law”—under which men and women convicted of a violent crime against a youth or the murder of an adult must register for a period ranging from ten years up to natural life.
The amendatory provisions developed by IMAN organizers will be officially submitted to the Illinois Legislative Review Bureau (LRB) for approval in early February, and then proceed to the Senate Judicial Committee. If the amended bill is signed into law, Illinois would become the first state in the nation to create a mechanism whereby a member of the violent registry can seek removal from the database.
IMAN has worked alongside returning citizens for two decades, many of whom were involved in violent crimes during their youth. We remain committed to justice during this legislative session and seek to streamline the registry, making it possible for registrants to advocate for themselves and to create a space for all impacted by violent crimes to heal.
If you are interested in advocating for criminal justice reform in Springfield or participating in community conversations with other leaders, legislators, residents and others directly impacted by violent crimes, contact Senior Organizer Shamar Hemphill, firstname.lastname@example.org