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To kickstart the year, here’s a look at policy updates and how you can get involved to make a difference in 2020.


Young Feminist Conference (YFC) - reproductive health workshop - Nov 9, 2019

OUR YOUTH MATTERS! She Votes Illinois was thrilled to be a partnering organization with Cause the Effect Chicago for their annual Young Feminist Conference in Chicago on November 9.  

Our workshop,  #BeLikeIllinois: Reproductive Health Activism in IL, presented by Chicago Abortion Fund, Illinois Handmaids and Planned Parenthood Illinois Action shared what organizations and state legislators are doing to ensure Illinois remains a safe beacon for abortion and comprehensive reproductive health care. We provided the audience with tools to take concrete actions and provide practical support to current reproductive justice and sexual health/rights issues. 

(Photo: YFC event program including She Votes Illinois board member Annie Williams and co-founder, Maureen Keane)

🚨 CALL TO ACTION: Join the TRUST YOUTH campaign to repeal PNA led by Illinois Caucus for Adolescent Health.


Voter Registration Drive at Roosevelt University - Nov 12 & 14, 2019

YOUR VOTE MATTERS! She Votes Illinois joined forces with Roosevelt University student Sariah Bolden for a two day event to register students to vote in the state of Illinois in preparation for the 2020 elections. With so much at stake, 2020 is going to be a BIG year, and together we must make it count! 

(Photo (left to right): She Votes Illinois Board members Sophia Madana, Stephanie Sims, Roosevelt University Sariah Bolden, and She Votes IL co-founder, Maureen Keane)

🚨 CALL TO ACTION: If you'd like She Votes Illinois to help you register students to vote at your school or speak in one of your classes, reach out to us at - Let's connect & collaborate! 


She Votes Families! Pop-up event - Nov 17, 2019

LIFE IS BUSY! We at She Votes Illinois are so incredibly grateful and awe-inspired by everyone who participated in and attended our first pop-up event, She Votes Families!, at Aubergine Chicago on Sunday, Nov. 17. To read further about the day’s event, read our Medium article here

(Photo: (back row left to right): Rep. Delia Ramirez, Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx, and Cook County Commissioner Donna Miller with She Votes Illinois Advisory Council member Annie Warshaw (first row 2nd from the right)

🚨 CALL TO ACTION: Call, email or write your IL State Representative and your IL State Senator today to support the Paid Maternity Act bill (HB9).


Women’s March Chicago - Jan 18, 2020

MAKE IT COUNT! Inspiring women and allies to get out the vote (GOTV); protect and advocate for women’s rights; and get activated in our upcoming elections and the 2020 census, Cook County Commissioner Donna Miller, Vital Votes USA President Egerton Abulu, and She Votes Illinois’ very own Mary Catherine Hanafee LaPlante spoke to the enthusiastic crowd at our Pritzker Park meetup before the women’s march. 

She Votes Illinois was also proud to be a participating organizer for the Chicago Women’s March on Saturday, January 18 representing on the Voters Block of the Gallery of Issues Route. 

Be sure to join us at the next march planned for October 2020. 

(Photo (left to right): She Votes Illinois Board member Aoife Reynolds, Advisory Council member Mary Catherine Hanafee LaPlante and graphic designer volunteer Lauren Niemchick)

🚨 CALL TO ACTION: Text MARCH to 91999 to learn more about the issues that impact you. 


Passing legislation at the state and local levels is an important way of protecting our rights. We support Illinois legislation that advances women and minorities rights, educates our residents, protects our body, and is inclusive. 

🚨 CALL TO ACTION: Call, email or write your IL State Representative and your IL State Senator today to support these bills. 

HB3932, The Task Force for Missing & Murdered Chicago Women. With over 50 unsolved cases of missing and murdered women and girls, we must examine the systemic causes behind violence that Chicago women and girls experience and create measures to help victims, victims' families, and victims' communities prevent and heal from violence that occurs against Chicago women and girls. 

HB3953, The Cannabis Banking and Credit Union Act. As cannabis remains illegal at the federal level, creating state-licensed financial institutions to provide banking services to cannabis businesses will help mitigate the current risks that cannabis businesses face with cash-only operations.  

HB4007 amends the School Code to provide that sex education course material and instruction in grades 6 through 12 must include an age-appropriate discussion on sexting. As 15.5% of 8 year old girls have been exposed to sexting and 24% of children by the age of 13 have been asked to send nude photos, we must support legislation that educates and protects our children.  

HB4009 amends the Juvenile Court Act to expunge law enforcement records of people who committed cannabis-related violations before turning 18. We support legislation that addresses social inequities impacted by the legalization of marijuana. 


Meeting with State Rep Kam Buckner - Nov 21, 2019

We continue our efforts in meeting with elected officials across the state and in November, we met with Illinois State Representative Kam Buckner of the 26th district to ensure our elected officials understand the issues most important to Illinois women and help elected officials create and enforce policies that uplift us all.

No Small Plans Documentary film screening - Jan 30, 2020

With the first installment in our She Votes: Level UP! series, She Votes Illinois is determined to ensure everyone has the tools they need this election to have an impact on voter turnout and to get more women into office. 

Last night, we premiered Annie Swank’s ‘No Small Plans’ which followed several female aldermanic campaigns in Chicago in 2019. ‘No Small Plans’ is about what it takes to win and why it matters. The screening at the Chicago Athletic Association hotel was followed by a panel discussion of the documentary participants. In the face of apathetic voters and entrenched incumbents, we are inspired by these women who share a drive and desire to represent their communities in city government.

(Photo: She Votes Illinois board members with 'No Small Plans' documentary alderwomen candidates and staff)


United Nations Association Chicago CEDAW Meeting - Jan 31, 2020

She Votes Illinois continues to support the United Nations Association of Chicago in its efforts to ratify the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) in Chicago, Cook County and across the state. In our latest efforts, we are participating in a meeting held by UNA-Chicago with Commissioner Gainer's policy director, Noureen Hashim, to promote the principles of CEDAW on a local level.


Illinois Supreme Court Candidate Forum - Feb 27, 2020
From cases addressing maternity leave for teachers, the constitutionality of the Illinois stalking law, firearm laws involving domestic violence and many others - who represents us on the Illinois Supreme Court is a critical component for justice in Illinois, especially for women. 

She Votes Illinois is proud to be a partnering organization for this upcoming event. Join WE WILL, Evanston Live TV and partners for a Q&A to hear from the candidates on criminal justice reform and the importance of the upcoming IL Supreme Court Justice Election. Learn what supreme court justices do, hear from the candidates themselves, and learn how this vote affects your community and your family.


She Votes Social - live podcast - Feb 2020

A live podcast recording and networking event. (Our inaugural podcast!)

She Votes Level UP Sessions - Mar 21, 2020

An afternoon designed to empower Illinoisans to get involved and activated in their communities. 

🚨 CALL TO ACTION: Save the date and follow us on social media @SheVotesIL for updates on our She Votes Level UP series of events.


Have you been looking to step up your involvement in the political process and advocate for women’s rights and equality in our state? She Votes Illinois is looking for bold and compassionate volunteers to help advance our mission.

🚨 CALL TO ACTION: If you are interested in becoming part of our team, no matter where you live in the state of Illinois, we’d love to talk to you! No political experience necessary. Contact us at for more details and be a part of our movement! All are welcome!!!


The Presidential Primary Election will be held on Tuesday, March 17, 2020 for President and other national, state and county positions. Whether you are a first time voter or 20th time voter, She Votes Illinois wants to make sure that you have all the tools you need to vote!

(Photo credit: Lauren Niemchick)



Your support is vital to helping us protect, support and advance initiatives in the state of Illinois. Every dollar helps She Votes Illinois expand. Host more events. Partner with more organizations. Amplify our voices to elected officials.


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