Civil Rights

Tim Shelley / Peoria Public Radio

The Peoria NAACP and Illinois State Police District 8 have adopted a set of shared principles aimed at improving the relationship between local law enforcement and the Black community.

Tim Shelley / Peoria Public Radio

Gloria Clark-Jackson is telling her brother's story, 50 years after the civil rights activist from Peoria was killed in a Chicago police raid.

How Race Made A Peoria Newspaper Deliveryman A Target

Jul 9, 2020
Dana Vollmer / WCBU

Geoff Landrum is a Black newspaper deliveryman, distributing local publications like the Peoria Journal-Star to Peoria Heights and surrounding neighborhoods.

WCBU's Steve Tarter talks with Landrum about times his race has affected his job, including during the aftermath of George Floyd's murder.

Black Justice Project via Facebook

A coalition of Peoria community groups requesting the disciplinary records of several police officers involved in fatal incidents, say they're not satisfied with the statement released Wednesday night by Chief Loren Marion III and the police union.

(AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

Illinois landlords are not allowed to kick out tenants during the government-mandated shelter in place period. But that's not stopping some from trying.

Michel Euler / AP Photo

As bars and clubs shut down amid COVID-19, some displaced employees are looking to sex work to supplement their income.

Peoria Rescue Ministries

Peoria's homeless shelters are staying open amid COVID-19 related closures, but they face some challenges in finding the space and resources to accommodate the need.

Photo by Dan Steinberg/Invision/AP, File

The Oscars ceremony has faced heavy criticism in recent years for its lack of diverse nominees.

Tim Shelley / WCBU

The keynote speaker at Peoria's Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Luncheon made voting rights the main theme of his address.

Lee V. Gaines / Illinois Newsroom

The Illinois Department of Corrections has revised its publication review policy to include a centralized appeal process for incarcerated people who feel they’ve been unfairly denied access to certain reading materials.


Four swastikas were found on the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign campus in the last two weeks. The hate symbols were found drawn or carved in two different residence halls, a library and a bathroom stall in the campus’ foreign languages building.

Voices for Illinois Children

Nearly 90 percent of the children living in concentrated poverty in Illinois are nonwhite, according to a recent report by a child advocacy group.

Lee Gaines / Illinois Public Media

The Illinois Department of Corrections will implement a new publication review policy in October. The change comes after staff at the Danville Correctional Center removed more than 200 books from a college-in-prison program’s library at the facility earlier this year.

Rockford Woman Challenges License Rule

Sep 5, 2019

A Rockford woman has filed a federal lawsuit against the Illinois Secretary of State. The action is done in partnership with a Chicago organization, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR.

Courtesy of University of Illinois

Officials at the University of Illinois are investigating a report of a noose found in an elevator at Allen Hall, a student dorm in Urbana.

Christopher Fuller Photography

A recent report illustrates just how much harder it is for people who aren’t white to get small-business loans.


A package of bills signed into law by Governor J.B. Pritzker is aimed at helping newly-released Illinois prisoners find their way back into the democratic process.

Per Pettersson / Flickr / CC-by 2.0

Illinois is joining a chorus of states condemning a Trump administration proposal to rollback protections for transgender people under the Affordable Care Act.

Billy Brown / Flickr / CC-by 2.0

Banks in Illinois are more likely to lend to white-owned small businesses as opposed to their minority counterparts — to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars. That’s according to a report released Tuesday by the Woodstock Institute, a social justice and research think tank.

asalexander / Flickr / CC-by 2.0

The American Civil Liberties Union sent letters to eight Illinois municipalities last week urging them to repeal their panhandling bans. The nonprofit organization warned of legal action if community officials don't heed their warning.

Sick Migrant Kids Sent To Illinois

Jul 17, 2019
Matt Brown / Flicker / CC-by 2.0

Hundreds of immigrant children who originally came to the southern border are sick, with illnesses like fever, strep throat, and even tuberculosis. Now, they’re being sent alone to Illinois shelters.

Anti-Defamation League

White extremist propaganda surged by almost 60 percent on Midwestern college campuses last year. That’s according to a new report from the Anti-Defamation League.

Dana Vollmer / WCBU

Peoria native and feminist icon Betty Friedan received a tribute across the street from her childhood home.

Chillicothe Park District

A recent incident in Chillicothe now has the park district asking: just what are the state’s rules for breastfeeding in or near a public pool? 

On Tuesday, a woman was breastfeeding her daughter while dipping her feet in the water at Shore Acres Pool. An employee asked her to cover up or go somewhere else. The woman claimed this broke the law. 

Chillicothe Park District Executive Director Kevin Yates said mothers are allowed to breastfeed at all of their facilities. But he said there’s a discrepancy in Illinois law when it comes to nursing near a pool. 

AP Photo/Brynn Anderson

A bill currently awaiting Governor J.B. Pritzker’s signature would close a loophole in state law that allows some massage parlors to operate without state licensing. 

An Illinois high school student and her father are suing a school district and several administrators alleging her civil rights were violated when she showed support for gun rights during an anti-school violence walkout.

Dr. King's Lasting Impact

Apr 3, 2018
Selma Best Videos / CC BY-SA 2.0 / Flickr

Today marks the 50th anniversary of the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination. While many will remember King for his leadership, Illinois Public Radio’s Brian O’Keefe has the story of King’s personal impact on one man’s life. 

A 2020 jury trial date has been set for a transgender inmate suing Illinois Department of Corrections officials for alleged abuses.

A federal judge has ordered the city of Springfield to pay more than $330,000 to civil rights attorneys who represented two panhandlers in the legal fight over anti-panhandling laws in the city.

Springfield City Council members have unanimously approved a resolution affirming the state capital city's commitment to civil rights and opposition to racism.