Suffredin- For a Better Cook County  
 

Accountability
Forest Preserves
Public Safety
Cook County Budget
Forest Pres. Budget
Property Tax Appeal
Health & Hospitals
Land Bank Authority
Policy Resolutions
Unsung Heroine

 

   
 
   
   
 
   
     
  Office phone numbers:  
   
 
 

The Cook County Code of Ordinances are the current laws of Cook County.

   
 

Search current and proposed Cook County Legislation in Larry's exclusive legislative library.

   
  Cook County was created on January 15, 1831 and named after Daniel P. Cook, Member of Congress and the first Attorney from the State of Illinois.
   
     
     
     



Halting the spread of COVID-19 at Cook County Jail is our moral responsibility
The number of detainees should be reduced further and faster. Those released must be tested and monitored.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times
by Editorial Board

We remain troubled by the spread of the coronavirus at Cook County Jail, where a corrections officer and at least three detainees have died from COVID-19 and another 185 guards and 215 detainees have been infected.

The county jail remains a hot spot for the virus, and the clock is ticking toward a greater crisis.

Nobody should pretend there are any easy answers here, and we can’t agree with those who essentially have called for the jail to be emptied out. There are plenty of people in the jail who, for reasons of public safety, can’t be released or moved to less secure settings.

But we urge county law enforcement officials to pick up the pace in what they’re already doing — reducing the jail population in a selective way while improving protections for those who must remain locked up. This approach has reduced the number of detainees from 5,600 to about 4,200 since the pandemic began.

Those inmates who are released must be tested and monitored to reduce the chances of the virus being spread across the city and county by those who are freed.

Cook County Sheriff Thomas Dart has used the freed-up jail space to move detainees farther apart in a bid to slow the virus. Earlier this month, U.S. District Court Judge Matthew Kennelly ruled that Dart must provide inmates with enough soap, cleaning supplies and personal protective equipment, plus prompt testing of at-risk inmates.

Editorials

Dart is working against a clock, as he well knows. Jails and prisons, crowded places in which frequent hand washing and other sanitary measures are difficult to enforce, practically invite viruses to sweep through.

Consider Ohio’s Marion prison, a facility with a smaller population than Cook County Jail. Officials reported this week that 1,950 of the prison's 2,500 inmates — an astounding 80 percent of those behind bars — are infected and one inmate has died. A third of Marion’s workforce has tested positive for the virus and a guard has died.

The sweep of the coronavirus at the prison has been so complete that the Ohio National Guard has been called in to build new structures to house and treat prisoners.

The potential danger could be even greater at Cook County Jail, which has a far more transient population compared to a state prison, and where thousands of employees come and go each working shift.

Judge Kennelly declined to order a mass release of detainees from the jail, but he stressed the moral challenge.

People are jailed there “pending determination of their guilt or innocence,” Kennelly wrote, “and by doing so the government takes on an obligation to protect their health and safety.”

We must meet that obligation.

Send letters to letters@suntimes.com.



Recent Headlines

Working together to ensure that land, water, and life will always thrive in the forest preserves in Cook County.
Wednesday, July 06, 2022
Special to suffredin.org

For the Love Of Water (FLOW) is a summary of news from the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago.
Tuesday, July 05, 2022
Special to suffredin.org

First mosquitoes carrying West Nile virus reported in Cook County
Sunday, July 03, 2022
Chicago Tribune

Forest Preserves of Cook County presents family fun at Kids’ Fest in Thornton
Thursday, June 30, 2022
Chicago Tribune

‘Check your check’: Minimum wage increases Friday in Chicago and Cook County
Thursday, June 30, 2022
Chicago Sun-Times

First Graduates of Cook County Restorative Justice Program Recognized
Thursday, June 30, 2022
WTTW News

Illinois getting nearly 4,500 doses of monkeypox vaccine from national stockpile
Thursday, June 30, 2022
Chicago Tribune

Cook County restorative justice program offers 2nd chance for young, non-violent offenders
Wednesday, June 29, 2022
ABC Local

Protect endangered species from overuse of deadly ‘neonic’ pesticides
Sunday, June 26, 2022
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County Public Health Officials Announce First Presumptive Case of Monkeypox
Saturday, June 25, 2022
Special to suffredin.org

Illinois child welfare officials defend leaving kids in jail after release
Friday, June 24, 2022
WBEZ News

Cook County rescued popular restaurant from tax sale, then hosted an event there
Friday, June 24, 2022

Cook County Officials Unveil Rosy 2023 Budget Outlook
Friday, June 24, 2022
WTTW News

Trailblazers Program Empowers Volunteers
Thursday, June 23, 2022
Special to suffredin.org

Preckwinkle forecasts county’s smallest budget gap in a decade, no new taxes or fees planned
Wednesday, June 22, 2022
Chicago Tribune

Cook County's nonexistent residency policy
Wednesday, June 22, 2022
Crain's Chicago Business

Cook County invests $925,000 in COVID-19 stimulus money to bolster south suburban metals, machinery and equipment manufacturers
Sunday, June 19, 2022
Daily Southtown

COVID-19 risk in Chicago, Cook County improves to ‘medium’
Friday, June 17, 2022
Chicago Sun-Times

Man found beaten to death inside Cook County Jail cell: autopsy
Wednesday, June 15, 2022
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County unveils new flag designed by high school student and inspired by 1893 World’s Fair goddess statue
Tuesday, June 14, 2022
Chicago Tribune

all news items

Paid for by Larry Suffredin and not at taxpayer expense. A Haymarket Production.
^ TOP