Suffredin- Changing County Government  

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:  

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


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

  The first blood bank in the world was established at Cook County Hospital by Dr. Bernard Fantus in 1937.

Juvenile center agrees to outside review

Friday, September 16, 2005
Chicago Sun-Times
by ABDON M. PALLASCH Staff Reporter

Embattled bosses at Cook County's Juvenile Temporary Detention Center agreed Thursday to let national experts come in, review the center and recommend reforms.

Under fire from County Board members and from stories in the Sun-Times and other media about mistreatment of detainees at the center, President John Stroger and administrators at the center have accepted an offer from the Baltimore-based Annie E. Casey Foundation to perform a review at no cost to the county.

Board members held a hearing Thursday to question Stroger, Public Safety Director J.W. Fairman and new Supt. Jerry Robinson about allegations of abuse against detainees; jobs being filled with patronage hires with arrest records instead of qualified professionals; staff helping themselves to food, overtime and other perks.

Any such misbehavior was in the past -- three months ago before Robinson came on board, Robinson said.

"Have you not seen what other people have seen: staff standing around, kids not engaged, watching television?" Commissioner Forrest Claypool asked, echoing other board members who toured the center. "Is that just a coincidence -- all these observations from a dozen different people? Did you not see it?"

'Increased transparency' sought

"When I first got there, yes I did," Robinson said. But he said he made changes. "I hold the supervisors accountable. The [detainees'] days are planned from the time they get up at 6 a.m. until they go to bed at 8:30. Some juveniles -- not all -- come back there because they get better treatment there than they do in their regular homes . . . more attention, more medical care, more direction."

"There were some people out there that were abusing kids," Fairman conceded. But he laid down the law when he got there two years ago, he said. "Some people were saying, 'You can't put your hands on a kid because Fairman's going to fire you.' I was pretty hard on them."

Mike Mahoney of the John Howard Association, a monitor appointed by a federal judge hearing the ACLU's case against the center, likewise said he had seen recent improvements.

"Do you have a problem with the way these [allegations of abuse] incidents are reported?" board member Tony Peraica said.

"Yes, up until four months ago," he said. "It was rectified. We now get a monthly survey that goes to the ACLU and the two monitors."

'Transparency demanded

Robinson and Fairman said board members' suggestion to require bachelor's degrees instead of just two years of college would make it tougher to fill jobs.

Ben Wolf, the ACLU attorney who sued the county over conditions at the center, said he wished the Casey Foundation well, but, "I will caution them as I've cautioned many other fine consultants who have been eaten alive there over the years," Wolf said: If the county government controls the documents and the review process, it will be hard to force any changes.

Robinson and Fairman pledged full cooperation with Casey's experts, who demand "increased transparency" from the center as part of the deal.


Recent Headlines

Cook County circuit clerk says city owes $13M in fees
Wednesday, June 20, 2018
Chciago Daily Law Bulletin

Cook County faces $177 million in deficits over next two budget years
Tuesday, June 19, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Preckwinkle: Cook County facing 'difficult and challenging' $82 million budget shortfall
Tuesday, June 19, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Preckwinkle: $82M Budget Hole Means ‘Difficult Choices’ For Cook County
Tuesday, June 19, 2018
WBEZ Chicago Public Radio

Editorial: A Chicago revival: The Lazarus of Harrison Street
Friday, June 15, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Growing food, community
Wednesday, June 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Help Squad: Consumers can file lawsuits and other legal documents online —some free via an online fee waiver
Wednesday, June 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Residents speak out as Wilmette Board introduces minimum wage and sick time ordinances
Wednesday, June 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

County's bid to avoid attorney fees for paraplegic detainee backfires
Wednesday, June 13, 2018
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Cook County Forest Preserves Show Off To Visitors At Daley Plaza
Tuesday, June 12, 2018
WBBW News Radio

Peek Inside the Old Cook County Hospital, Vacant for 16 Years
Tuesday, June 12, 2018
NBC Chicago

After 16 years, renovation underway at old Cook County Hospital
Tuesday, June 12, 2018
WGN Television

Officials break ground on $1 billion overhaul of long-vacant Cook County Hospital
Tuesday, June 12, 2018
Chicago Tribune

George Leighton, legendary Chicago judge and courthouse namesake, dies at 105
Thursday, June 07, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

George Leighton, Chicago judge for whom criminal courthouse is named, dies at 105
Wednesday, June 06, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County allows video gambling in unincorporated areas
Wednesday, June 06, 2018
Chicago Tribune lawsuit against Cook County sheriff dismissed
Saturday, June 02, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Dorothy Brown’s office to get federal monitor for hiring practices
Friday, June 01, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Coyote puppies tagged, health work-ups conducted in the Forest Preserves of Cook County
Thursday, May 31, 2018
Special to

EDITORIAL: Justice delayed 16 months — until a reporter starts nosing around
Wednesday, May 30, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

all news items

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