Equip for Equality

Vienna Correctional Center
courtest Illinois Department of Corrections / via flickr.com/chicagopublicradio (cc-by-nc 2.0)

The state of Illinois has agreed to settle a lawsuit over its treatment of prisoners who are deaf or hard-of-hearing.

A special joint committee of Illinois Senators and Representatives will meet Wednesday to learn about abuse and neglect in the state's network of group homes for the developmentally disabled.

Gov. Bruce Rauner says he wants to get the state out of legal agreements called consent decrees. The deals are a big part of the reason the government is still operating without a budget; they also impact the lives of thousands of Illinois residents. But unless you are affected by one, you've probably never heard of them.