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Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

Martin Luther King, Jr.

ad•vo•cacy (n.) speaking, acting and writing with minimal conflict of interest on behalf of the sincerely perceived interests of a disadvantaged person or group to promote, protect and defend their welfare and justice.

Historically, strong and well-orchestrated advocacy movements have played a critical role in strengthening the African American community’s voice in policy development, resource distribution, and access to human services. The ILAACP is committed to championing a continuous, constructive, and staunchly focused advocacy agenda that ensures safe, healthy, and resilient African American children, families, and communities.

From as far north as Lake and Winnebago counties to as far south as Pulaski and St. Clair counties, Illinois’ African American communities continue to disproportionately bear the economic and social costs of an insufficiently funded prevention and early intervention system. This includes, but is certainly not limited to, an excessively high infant mortality rate, inadequate access to quality early childhood education, a widening educational achievement gap, disproportionate juvenile/police contact and incarceration, and HIV/AIDS infection rates representing greater than half of all reported cases.

It is the ILAACP’s position that many social and health disparities can be reduced by strengthening early intervention and prevention systems within Illinois’ African American communities. This includes monitoring local, state, and federal legislation and policy that is pertinent to the work of the ILAACP and its members. The ILAACP also works in collaboration with other statewide organizations to advocate for policy, laws, and systems change consistent with our vision and mission.

  • Northwestern University CERC
    The ILAACP is a member of the External Advisory Committee (EAC) to the Community Engaged Research Center (CERC) at Northwestern University. The EAC meets quarterly to identify strategies that improve community health, which includes facilitating collaborative research partnerships between Chicago-area organizations, community-based clinicians and Northwestern University academic […]...
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  • U.S. Commission on Civil Rights: Health Disparities Hearing
    In August 2010 the Illinois State Advisory Committee for the United States Commission on Civil Rights held a Health Disparities fact finding meeting at the National Museum of Mexican Art in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood. The meeting provided researchers, policy makers, and community activists from across the state […]...
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  • Teen REACH 37
    In FY2007, the ILAACP rose to the challenge and spearheaded a campaign to restore funds to 37 community-based agencies across Illinois that lost their Teen REACH after-school programs. More than 60 youth from Teen REACH programs marched in Chicago’s Columbus Day Parade in support of the Teen […]...
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  • ILAACP Capitol Day
    ILAACP hosts an annual Capitol Day in Springfield, IL for its member organizations from across the state. ILAACP Capitol Day challenges our member organizations to become more proactive with a consistent presence during the annual Illinois legislative sessions. During the two-day event, the chief executive and board […]...
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  • Illinois Bullying Prevention Taskforce
    In 2011, the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), pursuant to Public Act 96-952 – Prevent School Violence Act (PSVA) – established the Illinois School Bullying Prevention Task Force (Task Force). The Task Force, administered by ISBE, is populated by representatives of state agencies, regional offices of […]...
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  • Illinois After-School Funding Policy Taskforce
    Convened by the Illinois Afterschool Partnership (IAP) through House Resolution 384, the ASFPT developed policy recommendations to assure higher quality after-school programming for Illinois’ 2.1 million children. Recommendations also focused on creating a sustained, accountable, and dedicated stream of funding for a system of after-school time that […]...
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  • Illinois State Health Improvement Plan
    Pursuant to Public Act 93-0975, Illinois is required to produce a State Health Improvement Plan (SHIP) every four years. SHIP must include priorities and strategies for health status and public health system improvement in Illinois, with a focus on prevention. It also must address reducing racial, ethnic, […]...
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  • Illinois Diabetes Policy Coalition
    The IDPC is comprised of several local and statewide advocacy organizations committed to preventing and reducing the incidence of diabetes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, African Americans now make up one-fifth (1/5) of the United States diabetes population. The ILAACP is interested in […]...
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