Winter/Spring 2019 – Our organization had barely begun when circumstances at WIU called us to action before we had any standing committees even filled. We stepped up to try to help avert massive layoffs at Western Illinois University.
We partnered with UPI Local 4100 to hold community conversations and a rally on the steps of Sherman Hall.
We are immensely grateful for Illinois Comptroller Susana Mendoza, who gave us a statement to read at the rally. From the article:
“Democratic Women of McDonough County founder Heather McMeekan also received a statement from Illinois Comptroller Susana Mendoza. The statement was to be read in advance of the layoffs at the Thursday night rally held by the Democratic Women, UPI and Indivisible of West Central Illinois.” Source: https://www.starcourier.com/news/20190302/a-terrible-day
“The 736-day budget impasse was devastating to our public universities and community colleges. It will take them years to recover from the damage that was done. Illinois continues to face unprecedented fiscal challenges. But, to the extent possible given the state’s budget realities, Illinois must invest in our public higher education system to ensure a healthy and vibrant future for our state. Our universities are drivers of local economies in communities like Macomb. As Comptroller, I’ve visited your beautiful campus and witnessed firsthand how important WIU is to the entire region. If the state does not support higher education, Illinois will continue to lose students to other states, and many will never return. As we work to bring Illinois back from the brink of fiscal calamity, my office will continue to prioritize education. I would also urge the Governor and state legislators to recognize and value the important role our universities and community colleges play in our state’s economy, workforce and recovery. Thank you for advocating for your university and your community, of which I stand in strong support.” ~ Comptroller Susana Mendoza