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Senate OKs Prohibition on Privatizing Prison Nurses Jobs

March 30, 2017

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) – The Illinois Senate is telling Gov. Bruce Rauner it doesn’t want prison nurse jobs filled by private contractors.

Plainview Republican Senator Sam McCann’s measure won approval Wednesday 40-15. It would prohibit the Department of Corrections from eliminating jobs of any state employees who provide prison health care services.

Republican Rauner’s administration announced last week it intended to dismiss 124 union nurses and privatize their positions this summer.

Corrections officials say they could save $8 million by having contractor Wexford Health Sources provide the nurses.

Proponents of the bill say prison nursing jobs are tough to fill. They say Wexford has trouble filling its posts.

Republican Sen. Jim Oberweis of Sugar Grove says Rauner should be allowed to take action to meet Democrats’ demands for budget cuts.

The bill is SB19. Online: https://www.ilga.gov

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