Stories by Dilpreet Raju — Capitol News Illinois

State Rep. Lakesia Collins, D-Chicago, speaks at an event announcing the planned opening of a birth center on the South Side of Chicago Monday. (Credit:

New Birth Center to Open on South Side as Pritzker Touts Proposed Maternal Health Spending

The nonprofit Chicago South Side Birth Center will mark the city’s second active midwife-led birth center, but the first for the South Side. Advocates say the Black-led center offers safe birthing alternatives in a medically underserved area of the city. 

Alaina Harkness, the executive director of the water tech nonprofit Current, appears at a Chicago news conference on Jan. 30, 2024, with Gov. J.B. Pritzker. (Dilpreet Raju  / Capitol News Illinois)

Chicago Nonprofit to Receive $15M in Federal Funding to Help Launch Regional Water Sustainability Industry

The U.S. National Science Foundation awarded the grant to Current Innovation NFP, a nonprofit “innovation hub” whose mission is to “solve pressing water challenges caused by climate change and pollution.” 

Lt. Gov. Juliana Stratton speaks to reporters and advocates at a news conference announcing a new unified portal for child behavioral health programs on Jan. 29, 2024. (Capitol News Illinois)

Illinois Partners with Google to Launch New Portal for Children’s Mental Health Resources

The Illinois Department of Human Services is partnering with Google to launch a new centralized portal for children’s mental health care, state officials announced Monday.

(Credit: Elsa Olofsson / Pixabay)

Illinois Supreme Court to Determine If Cannabis Odor is Cause for Vehicle Search

Case tests language of 2020 legalization law

The court heard two consolidated cases of individuals who were in vehicles that were searched after an officer used the smell of cannabis as probable cause. Lawyers argued the smell of cannabis alone should not be probable cause to search a vehicle given that the substance is no longer illegal in Illinois.

Chicago’s Federal Plaza is pictured during the End Overdose Now rally in downtown on Aug. 28, 2023. (Dilpreet Raju / Capitol News Illinois)

Amid Record Overdoses and Drug Counselor Shortage, Illinois Workforce Expansion Program Aims to Fill Gap

Amid five straight years of record overdose deaths in Illinois, a new state program aims to alleviate a shortage of professionals who work to prevent substance use disorders.

After Clark Alave suffered injuries from a crash involving a pothole in Chicago, the Illinois Supreme Court ruled cyclists are not always “intended” users of the road, meaning the city wasn’t liable for Alave’s injuries. (Capitol News Illinois illustration by Andrew Adams)

Illinois Supreme Court Rules Chicago Not Liable for Street Pothole Not ‘Intended’ for Cyclists

The case pertained to a section of the Tort Immunity Act, which states local public entities have a duty to maintain property in a safe condition for “people whom the entity intended and permitted to use the property.” 

(WTTW News)

Illinois Health Plan Declares Racism a Public Health Crisis

A new state health report pinpoints racism as a public health crisis while also noting Illinois needs to improve in the areas of maternal and infant health, mental health and substance use disorders.

The Illinois State Board of Elections headquarters in Springfield. (Andrew Campbell / Capitol News Illinois)

Candidate Filing Begins Monday, Signaling Official Start of 2024 Election Cycle

Monday morning marks the official beginning of the 2024 election cycle in Illinois, opening up the week-long period when candidates for local, state, congressional and judicial races are required to turn in the signatures they’ve spent the last two months collecting to get on the ballot.