Health

Fri, 02/24/2012
Lawmakers in the Illinois House earned an extra $661,000 last year for serving as committee officers, even though some committees met fewer than five times and a handful met once, a Chicago News Cooperative analysis found. The House paid members who serve as committee chairmen and spokesmen (Springfield’s term for ranking minority members) $10,326...
Mon, 02/20/2012
The sounds of chaos bounce off the dim yellow walls. Everywhere there are prisoners wearing orange, red and khaki jumpsuits. An officer barks out orders as a thin woman tries to sleep on a hard bench in a holding cell. This is a harsh scene of daily life inside what has become the state’s largest de facto mental institution: the Cook County Jail....
Mon, 02/13/2012
For years, environmental and health organizations have called for the closing of the 83-year-old coal-fired State Line Power Station, one of the Chicago area’s top polluters. Now the plant, which is in Hammond, just across the Indiana border on Lake Michigan and adjacent to Calumet Park, is burning through its last stores of coal. It will stop...
Wed, 02/08/2012
Chicago Central Food Mart, a corner store in West Humboldt Park, straddles the northern edge of an area considered one of Chicago’s “food deserts.” The store’s faded yellow awning promises “fresh fruits, meats, and vegetables.” But until recently, little fresh produce could be found among the 99-cent sodas, chips, and canned meats packed onto the...
Mon, 01/30/2012
Illinois’ financial outlook could go from bad to catastrophic, according to a new analysis of state budget figures from a government watchdog group. The report from the non-partisan Civic Federation comes two days before Gov. Pat Quinn is scheduled to deliver his State of the State address, traditionally a chance to tout the health of the state....
Mon, 12/05/2011
Last week, a mother asked her daughter, a senior at Niles West High School, what she wanted for her 18th birthday. The daughter said she only wanted her mom to be there. “We don’t have much money, eat at home and don’t really go out,” said the girl, who baby-sits to help defray expenses like playing club soccer. “She’s not working and has raised...
Fri, 11/11/2011
Nearly two years after the Cook County Board of Commissioners voted to make more money available for H.I.V. and AIDS testing for detainees entering the Cook County Jail, most of the men coming into jail are not being tested because of a lengthy delay in hiring a phlebotomist to do the job. Some 150 to 250 detainees enter the jail each day, on...
Mon, 10/24/2011
More than 1,000 county employees would be laid off, about 100,000 residents in the unincorporated areas of Cook County would begin paying for the first time to receive police protection and taxes on alcohol and titled property such as cars and boats would increase under the budget Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle is set to unveil to...
Wed, 10/12/2011
Mayor Rahm Emanuel plans to spend nearly $150 million to make Chicago “the bike-friendliest city in the U.S.” That challenge is considerable, given Chicago’s slow start compared to Portland and other bike-centered cities, and Emanuel’s initial plan is drawing complaints about an inequitable distribution of bike-related investment. The Chicago...
Wed, 09/28/2011
The leader of what Ald. Proco “Joe” Moreno touts as the 1st Ward’s new “independent Democratic political organization” has a rap sheet that includes convictions in election fraud and drug cases. Juan “Johnny” Elias is the president of the newly formed 1st Ward First political group, which Moreno created in June. The organization plans to deploy...