SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – State Rep. Elizabeth “Lisa” Hernandez, D-Cicero, introduced legislation this week that will require the Secretary of State’s office to inform people about free English as a second language classes that may be available near them.
“Illinois is a welcoming state to all immigrants, so we must do what we can to support them and the 1.8 million immigrants who call Illinois home,” Hernandez said. “This legislation will ensure that people are aware about the services available to them in their communities, and better prepare them for jobs, education and new opportunities.”
Hernandez is leading the charge on House Bill 1557, which would require the Secretary of State to provide people applying for an Illinois Identification Card or a driver’s license a listing of free adult English classes that may be available in their county. The Secretary of State may also guide people to local not-for-profit organizations that may help local residents looking to improve their English skills.
“I look forward to continue supporting and improving access to programs that empower immigrant families with the tools they need to get ahead and provide for their children,” Hernandez said. “There is a lot work to be done to ensure Welcoming Centers and other integration services are fully funded and accessible to all.”