Other laws Collins has sponsored include SB 2136, the expungement of criminal prostitution charges, and SB 2137, a bill that requires virtual visitation options for people in long-term care facilities. in addition to existing in-person visiting policies.
HB 588 and SB 1599, which create a human trafficking task force to investigate the disparity in the investigation of missing black women and girls and the lack of resolve for their families, and SB 1600, which requires that truck stops and restaurants train staff to recognize signs of human trafficking in public places and restrooms are additional pieces of legislation that Collins has sponsored.
Collins lobbied for the aforementioned $30 million Auburn Park station at 79th Street in the Auburn Gresham community that will operate on Metra’s Rock Island line and includes parking.
Collins and others interested in replacing the iconic Rush, including Sen. Robert Peters (D-13th), will have an uphill battle given the congressman’s 30-year tenure and storied past both in health, activism and politics.
Last month Rush, 75, who is fully vaccinated, confirmed he had tested positive with a breakthrough case of COVID-19, having already received a booster shot. He overcame cancer which prevented him from speaking. The former Black Panther fought back and prevailed again.
First elected to Congress in 1992, Rush was the only elected official to defeat former President Barack Obama in the 2000 Democratic primary in the 1st Congressional District.
Rush faced further personal challenges in his life when his wife of 36, Carolyn, 68, who had been ill for some time, died of congestive heart failure in March 2017. Rush lost his son Huey in 1999, because of gun violence.
But the biggest challenge Rush faced was his successful escape from death during the December 4, 1969 Chicago police raid on the Black Panther apartment, 2337 W. Monroe St., led by the district attorney. of Cook County, Edward Hanrahan. Rush was then the co-founder of the Illinois Black Panther Party.
While more than a dozen police pulverized the West Side apartment with numerous bullets, killing 21-year-old Fred Hampton and 22-year-old Mark Clark as they slept, Rush was not there. Learning that he too was a target, Rush hid in various places and eventually transformed into Reverend Jesse Jackson, who allegedly told police that it was better not to have a scratch on Rush’s body during his jail. Rush repeatedly thanked Jackson for saving his life.
In July 2018, Rush, who is the pastor of Beloved Community Christian Church of God in Christ, married Reverend Paulette Holloway, who is also an author.
Rush announced his retirement on Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2022, at the historic Roberts Temple Church of God, 4021 S. State St., where the open casket funeral of 14-year-old Emmett Till was held in September 1955.
The funeral of Till, a Chicagoan, who was kidnapped from his uncle’s home in Money, Mississippi, by two white men who claimed the teenager had whistled Carolyn Bryant, a 21-year-old store clerk, drew attention worldwide attention after her mother, Mamie Till, decided to hold an open-casket funeral “so the world could see the ugly face of racism”.
Bryant, whose husband Roy, along with JW Milam, beat Till, mutilated his body and shot him in the head before putting a heavy cotton gin fan around his neck. They dumped his body in the Tallahatchie River.
At the funeral, lines of people lined up near the teenager’s coffin to see his dead face. His death sparked a powerful civil rights movement that eventually led to the Montgomery bus boycott of 1955 and the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1965.