Daisy Contreras

Reporter

Daisy reports on various assignments for NPR Illinois.  She graduated from the Public Affairs Reporting master’s  degree program at the University of Illinois Springfield, where she spent time covering the legislative session for NPR Illinois' Illinois Issues.  Daisy interned then researched for the Chicago Reporter.  She obtained an associate degree in French language from Harry S Truman College and a bachelor's degree in communications from the Illinois Institute of Technology. Before coming to Springfield, Daisy worked in communication roles for several Chicago non-profits. Daisy is from Chicago where she attended Lane Tech High School.

Mary Hansen / NPR Illinois

As news has centered on the plight of hundreds of families who have been separated while trying to enter the US through Mexico, concern has been raised over the ultimate destiny of about 1,500 children being held in detention centers and shelters. There are at least 66 of those children in Chicago, according to Heartland Alliance, a non-profit with nine shelters for unaccompanied minors there.

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Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

A U.S. Supreme Court ruling this week means shoppers will more often be paying sales taxes for online purchases. It might also have meant a windfall for state government, but Illinois lawmakers anticipated the decision and already spent the money.

Illinois Senate Democrats

After a Chicago Tribune investigation uncovered years of sexual abuse in the city’s public schools, Illinois lawmakers are calling on school officials for answers. A hearing is scheduled Wednesday morning in Chicago.

David Jackson

A team of Chicago Tribune reporters looked into cases of sexual misconduct in the city's public schools spanning a decade. Their series 'Betrayed' tells the stories of students abused by educators or other school employees. We talked to David Jackson — one of the reporters involved — about what they uncovered. 

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A measure aimed to bridge the gender wage gap was approved by the Illinois General Assembly last month. This is the second attempt by lawmakers to get a ‘no salary history’ initiative into law. Employers would no longer be able to ask someone what they previously earned during interviews.

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Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

AFSCME, Illinois biggest laobr union representing state government employees, was in the Fourth District Appellate Court this week. It's fighting a move by the Rauner administration to declare an impasse in contract negotiations, which are three years overdue.

Daisy Contreras / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

The debate continues over whether Illinois’ law allowing for taxpayer-funded abortions violates the state constitution. A trial judge dismissed the case last year but anti-abortion advocates are fighting back.  

A prominent state legislator, who led efforts in the Illinois House to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment, has stepped down from his leadership post after being accused of bullying and intimidation. 

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The Illinois General Assembly has approved a plan aimed at making sure people in jails can exercise their right to vote.

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Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Illinois lawmakers say they've made real progress toward passage of a budget. But even if they can get it passed by the scheduled end of session next Thursday (May 31), the big question remains: Will Gov. Bruce Rauner sign or veto it?

Daisy Contreras / NPR Illinois

Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan said he will cooperate with a special investigation over claims he used intimidation to pressure state Rep. Kelly Cassidy (D-Chicago) to quit her part-time job with Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart's office. Cassidy alleges Madigan retaliated after she criticized him over his handling of sexual harassment cases within his office earlier this year.

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More than 260 girls and young women came forward to tell their stories of sexual assault by former USA Olympic doctor Larry Nassar, who is currently serving multiple prison sentences for the abuse. The trial resulted in more than a prison sentence and settlement money for victims. It shined a light on the mishandling of sexual assault reports by young athletes. And last week, Illinois took center stage in this national issue.

Daisy Contreras / NPR Illinois

An Illinois House committee Monday discussed Gov. Bruce Rauner’s proposal to reinstate the death penalty for mass shooters and for those who murder police officers. The proposal is part of a broader public safety plan put forth in an amendatory veto.  

Illinois Republican Party

After weeks of feuding within the Illinois Republican Party an unusual agreement has been reached with hopes of bridging the divide.

Daisy Contreras / NPR Illinois

Update 5/16/18: The Senate approved the measure 35-18.  After Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner vetoed a proposal to license gun dealers, several legislators are suggesting a new, bipartisan approach in hopes of getting his support. 

Daisy Contreras / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

Democratic and Republican candidates for Illinois governor will soon receive a written pledge in the mail asking them to support the new law expanding abortion coverage -- and oppose any push to repeal it.  

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The Civic Federation, a Chicago-based fiscal watchdog group Wednesday said Governor Bruce Rauner’s budget proposal is unrealistic and relies on money that may never come through. The group’s report calls it “precariously balanced”.

Sam Dunklau / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

With time against them, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner and top leaders met again Tuesday morning to talk about adopting a budget before next month. But – there is some disagreement between leaders about just how helpful these meetings have been.

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Illinois lawmakers want to prevent a shooting similar to the one that happened in Las Vegas last year. A proposal, approved by the Senate, addresses security concerns around large-scale events.

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The Illinois Senate approved a measure intended to provide courts with more guidance on what to do when a minor is caught with a stolen car. But some juvenile justice groups say lawmakers are missing the bigger picture.

Sam Dunklau / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

When Illinois public officials are dismissed for misconduct, they are sometimes awarded large severance packages – which are paid for by taxpayers. A new proposal approved by the Senate would stop the practice.

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Several Illinois legislators are pushing to bring more construction jobs to the state. A plan under consideration in the House would award tax credits to companies that put up new buildings or improve existing structures. 

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The Illinois General Assembly is considering a proposal to expand birth control access. 

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The Illinois Senate Thursday approved a measure allowing the use of cannabis as an alternative to opioids. Under the plan, patients could get immediate -- but temporary -- access to cannabis with just a doctor’s certification. 

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Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

House Speaker Michael Madigan was re-elected to another term as chairman of the Democratic Party of Illinois. Meanwhile, gun owners marched on the Capitol, Gov. Bruce Rauner returned from his European trade mission, and a new report looks at the crushing late fees run up during the budget stalemate.

Sen. Julie Morrison / http://www.senatorjuliemorrison.com/

In response to the deadly Waffle House shooting in Nashville, one Illinois lawmaker wants to make sure firearms stay with those who can legally carry them.

Daisy Contreras

The Illinois General Assembly was unable to override Governor Bruce Rauner’s veto of a measure to license gun shops. The deadline to vote was Wednesday -- the same day hundreds of gun owners marched to the Statehouse to ask that legislators oppose the measure. 
 

Daisy Contreras / NPR Illinois

The Illinois General Assembly has only a few hours left to vote on a gun dealer licensing measure that would require gun shops to register with the state and pay a license fee. Gov. Bruce Rauner vetoed the proposal earlier this month, giving lawmakers only 15 calendar days to get enough support for an override. The deadline is today.

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The measure would make it easier for some in jail to vote. The proposal also aims to educate those that have been through the criminal system about their voting rights.  

Daisy Contreras / NPR Illinois

In a move not surprising to many, Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan Monday was re-elected as the chairman of the Illinois Democratic Party.

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