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(WTTW News)

Illinois lawmakers have proposed a new bill that defines organized retail crime for the first time in statute. But some community groups are raising concerns saying the legislation will further harm communities that have been oppressed by the criminal justice system for decades. 

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At the height of the holiday season, retail stores in Chicago and across the country are experiencing a rash of thefts. (WTTW News)

Multiple in-store thefts have been reported recently on the Magnificent Mile amounting to millions of dollars in stolen merchandise. But retailers say it’s not just about lost revenue — it’s about safety — and they’re calling for city officials to put more protections in place for businesses.

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(Tim Mossholder / Unsplash)

Unemployment has been a major issue throughout the pandemic. Stay-at-home orders spurred layoffs — many who lost their jobs had trouble accessing benefits — in part because there was a whole lot of fraud.

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Labor activists join some public officials downtown for a rally in support of raising the minimum wage in August 2019. (WTTW News)

The latest COVID-19 relief bill could come up for a vote in Congress as early as next week, but a key Democratic priority might be on the chopping block. We explore the potential impact of raising the minimum wage.

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A small business in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on April 7, 2020. (WTTW News)

The future for many small businesses is unclear. To create some security, the federal government has stepped in with $349 billion in loans for small businesses, but the programs have had a bumpy start. 

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(Ken Lund / Flickr)

The economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic is being felt by industries and businesses in Chicago and across Illinois, from large hotel chains and restaurants to independent movie theaters and music venues.