02162017CM0567rSPRINGFIELD – Computer hacking is a growing societal threat, and the perpetrators are willing to cross any lines – including into school databases.

That’s why State Senator Michael E. Hastings (D-Tinley Park) passed Senate Bill 3201 Monday, giving parents added recourse to protect their children and their data.

The measure requires schools to notify the parent of a student within 48 hours after discovery of a breach of security that results in the unauthorized release, disclosure or acquisition of information from a student record.

“We live in a technology-driven society, and it is increasingly utilized in the daily management of schools,” Hastings said. “Unfortunately technology can sometimes make our students’ records vulnerable to cyber-breaches. When misfortune strikes it is vital that parents have ample notice to protect their children’s private information.”

Last year, Hastings created the Student Online Personal Protection Act which prohibits the operator of an educational website, online service or application from selling or renting students’ information to third-party vendors.

This prevents educational institutions from gathering information to engage in targeted advertising, and it prevents the gathering of student portfolios for any purpose that is not for the direct benefit and enhancement of the child’s learning experience.

“The way our children learn has changed, we recognize that and we do not want to change that,” Hastings said. “But parents and educators should not have to be worried about how companies use marketing tactics to target our children, so we are working to safeguard our students’ privacy rights.”

Senate Bill 3201 passed the Senate with bipartisan support and now moves to the House for consideration.

Category: Press Releases

PHOTO New Senate Energy Chairman Hastings kicks off statewide energy tour at Braidwood Station 2State Senator Michael E. Hastings (D-Tinley Park) kicked off his statewide energy tour this week in the south suburbs at the Braidwood Generating Station. As the newly appointed chairman of the Senate’s Energy and Public Utilities Committee, he started this series of tours and educational visits to help put his role as energy chairman into perspective.  Hastings met with the employees at the Braidwood station to thank them for their hard-work to ensure the lights stay on in homes across Illinois

BRAIDWOOD – State Senator Michael E. Hastings (D-Tinley Park) kicked off his statewide energy tour this week in the south suburbs at the Braidwood Generating Station.

Hastings, newly appointed chairman of the Senate’s Energy and Public Utilities Committee, started this series of tours and educational visits to help put his role as energy chairman into perspective.

“I’m a firm believer that the only way to make responsible and educated decisions is to tour these facilities to ensure we craft policies that modernize and safeguard Illinois’ energy infrastructure,” Hastings said. “As the new energy chairman, I’m eager to learn more and gain a complete picture on how the energy decisions we make in Springfield impact families across Illinois.”

The power plant employs workers across the south suburbs, including many residents from Grundy and Kankakee counties, as well as the 19th state senate district which Hastings represents.

“I appreciate and value the time employees and supervisors took to help me better understand the impact Braidwood has in maintaining Illinois’ energy independence,” Hastings said. “The hard-working employees at the Braidwood station work endlessly to help ensure the lights stay on in our homes.”

The two nuclear reactors at the power plant produce more than 2,389 megawatts of clean, carbon-free energy which is enough electricity to power 2 million homes.  

“All of us at Braidwood station were honored to host Senator Hastings and his team,” said Amy Ferko, Plant Manager of Braidwood Generating Station. “We are proud of what we do to generate safe and reliable energy and of the economic impact we have here in the local community. We look forward to working with the senator and the energy committee to further develop and broaden understanding of the benefits of nuclear energy.”

Since the Braidwood tour, Hastings has visited the Kincaid Power Station and is working on scheduling additional tours throughout the state including a tour in Coffeen in the coming weeks.

Category: Press Releases

041415CM0438SPRINGFIELD- State Senator Michael E. Hastings (D-Tinley Park) supported a monumental measure Wednesday to keep communities across the Southland safe by facing the nationwide epidemic of gun violence.

Hastings voted for House Bill 772, which aims to take firearms out of the hands of persons believed dangerous by their families or law enforcement.

“Prior to many of these mass shootings, the killer had exhibited dangerous behavior and raised red flags before committing the atrocities,” Hastings said. “This measure gives family members and law enforcement the power to address those red flags and seek assistance if someone with access to guns is believed to be a threat to themselves or the general public.

“This new procedure could literally determine whether hundreds live or die.”

Hastings said House Bill 772, called the Lethal Violence Order of Protection Act, gives those closest to potentially dangerous subjects an added level of protection and gives law enforcement a greater ability to serve the public interest.

After a person has been reported as dangerous, if the court finds evidence to show the individual is a danger to themselves or the public, a judge can require that person to temporarily turn over any firearms in his or her possession.

Hastings, who earned the Bronze Star for his meritorious service in a combat zone and advanced to the rank of Captain in the U.S. Army, said the move is about public safety.

“The right to bear arms is a constitutional right. But we also must consider the importance of safety,” Hastings said. “I’m a strong supporter of responsible gun use. When I was in the service I used weapons to defend our nation’s honor and democratic values. This measure simply ensures we take precautions to keep our communities safe.”

House Bill 772 passed the Senate with bipartisan support and now moves to the House for consideration.

Category: Press Releases

March1 RS

SPRINGFIELD – The state of Illinois currently has no procedure in place to alert police and emergency professionals of missing disabled persons, but State Senator Michael E. Hastings (D -Tinley Park) is working to change that.

Hastings’ measure is aimed at reporting, quickly locating and returning missing disabled persons to their homes. It is motivated by the story of Greg*, a disabled man who went to Chipotle in Matteson, Illinois for a group-home excursion. During the outing, Greg wandered away from his group and it quickly became apparent there were few procedures in place to help find him.

When his caretakers requested an Amber Alert be put out in order to locate Greg, the authorities said there was no system in place for individuals living with disabilities. After 21 excruciating hours, Greg was returned to his caretakers, and the incident left advocates wondering if more can be done to protect Illinois’ disabled populations.

“It’s clear we can do more here, so I have sponsored this commonsense legislation to put protocols in place to help find and protect individuals living with intellectual and physical disabilities,” Hastings said. “This small change will help immediately alert authorities and emergency networkers to bring our loved ones home sooner.”

Senate Bill 2265 changes the Missing Persons Identification Act to ensure "high-risk missing persons" includes persons living with a developmental or intellectual disability. This will cover these individuals under the Endangered Missing Person Advisory program, which would provide a regional system for the rapid dissemination of information of missing people.

“As a community-based provider that supports adults with intellectual disabilities, I am excited to learn the Human Service Committee passed SB2265,” said Mary Pat Ambrosino, Chief Executive Officer of CTF Illinois. “Adults with intellectual disabilities are a vulnerable population, and by including them in the LEAD system you are not only providing a proven resource to families and providers but also giving us peace of mind knowing the safety of those we support is a priority.”

Senate Bill 2265 passed the Senate’s Committee on Human Services with bipartisan support and now moves to the full Senate for consideration.

“I can’t help but think if this alert system had been in place, Greg may not have gone missing for 21 hours,” Hastings said. “We are taking the lessons of the past to give police departments the means to communicate quickly and effectively to disseminate missing persons reports.”

*The name Greg was used to protect the identify and safety of the individual who experienced this event.

Category: Press Releases

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Welcome to the official website of Senator Michael E. Hastings. Please fill out our contact form to contact Senator Hastings directly or you may call any of our offices. We look forward to hearing from you.

Springfield Office:
118 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-9595

East Office:
813 School Ave
Matteson, IL 60443

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20855 South LaGrange Road
Frankfort, IL 60423
(815) 464-5431

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