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Hungry for Justice

Five hunger strikers in the state capitol — demanding a state budget that increases revenues and protects the safety net — are being joined by new fast participants every day, until the legislative session ends (or a humane budget is passed).  They’re backed by a coalition including Action Now, American Friends Service Committee, Brighton Park Neighborhood Council, Chicago Coalition for the Homeless, Logan Square Neighborhood Association, and  Organization of the Northeast, according to Michael McConnell of AFSC.  

“Slashing core programs such as home care services for seniors and people with disabilities; prevention programs that reduce violence, teen pregnancies, and substance abuse; and education and safety programs such as parent patrols and Grow Your Own teachers is unacceptable,” said the ad-hoc Hungry for Justice coalition in a statement.  “An estimated five million Illinois families depend on these programs.  At a time of economic crisis, cuts to our safety net are the worst possible action the legislature can take.”

“I’m not worried about my health,” said hunger striker Mahaley Somerville, 87. “I’m worried about the health of my communities if we try and fix this budget by removing these programs.”

The hunger strikers have introduced an element of moral clarity to an environment where it been missing for some time. 

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Category: human services, state budget, taxes


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