CHICAGO (CBS) -- Illinois is expanding rights for LGBTQ+ people, with Gov. JB Pritzker having signed four bills into law on Tuesday.
The package of legislation expands infertility treatment coverage for same-sex couples and women over 35, allows those getting married to choose gender-neutral certificates and those already married to update their certificates as such, and repeals an old law criminalizing the transmission of HIV.
"Today, I'll sign four new bills into law that advance Illinoisans' ability to live their fullest lives as their truest selves," Pritzker said in a news release. "In our continued efforts to shape a safer and more inclusive Illinois, my administration is on a mission to lift up and empower those who too often have been overlooked or forgotten. Today, the State of Illinois is taking another step to advance that mission."
The specific bills include:
• HB 3709, which updates the state's current law on infertility insurance to include LGBTQ+ families and single parents, and also reduces the wait time for women over 35;
• SB 139, which sets out a procedure where people can correct gendered language on their marriage certificates;
• HB 2590, which sets up rules to which county clerks must adhere for name changes on marriage certificates.
• HB 1063, which repeals a current HIV transmission law. The Governor's office said people with HIV face the threat of arrest, prosecution, and incarceration due to their HIV status – regardless of whether they transmit HIV to anyone.
"These pieces of critical legislation are a commitment to justice," Lt. Gov. Juliana Stratton said in the release. "We will continue this important work of ensuring Illinois is an inclusive state that is safe for members of our LGBTQ community to be their authentic selves and live free from discrimination."
"As we see legislators in other states across America viciously attack the rights of LGBTQ people, we are proud Illinois is moving forward today and leading on LGBTQ equality," Myles Brady Davis, Director of Communications and Press Secretary of Equality Illinois, added in the release. "Thank you to Gov. Pritzker for signing these important bills and to the legislative sponsors for their leadership. We especially thank the advocates who shared their stories and experiences, including people living with HIV and the Illinois HIV Action Alliance for pushing Illinois to lead with dignity and public health strategies, not stigma and criminalization; the loving LGBTQ couples who just want to be build families of their own; and Kathy, Kato, and Chicago House and Social Service Agency for ensuring trans and non-binary people will be able to see themselves and their families authentically reflected in more of their personal identity documents. Together, we are continuing to move Illinois forward in advancing the dignity and inclusion of LGBTQ people."
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