03042020CM0837SPRINGFIELD – Assistant Majority Leader Iris Y. Martinez (D-Chicago) is advancing an initiative to classify crimes against individuals based on their actual or perceived citizenship or immigration status as hate crimes.

“Hate crime laws are intended to protect individuals against biased crimes,” Martinez said. “Expanding the definition to include citizenship or immigration status is necessary to defend immigrants against senseless, discriminatory crimes.”

Under current law, crimes by reason against people of an actual or perceived race, color, creed, religion, ancestry, gender, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, or national origin of another individual or group of individuals are considered hate crimes.

The measure seeks to add citizenship or immigration status to the list of qualifications.

Senate Bill 2345 passed the Senate Criminal Law Committee and moves for further consideration before the full Senate.

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