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News Around Illinois – June 23, 2020

The latest news around the state, for June 23, 2020.

Chicago To Join State In Reopening Museums, Zoos On Friday

CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago will join the rest of Illinois in the next reopening phase starting Friday, allowing museums, gyms and zoos to open for business with restrictions in place. Public health officials said Monday that COVID-19 metrics required for reopening under state and city plans have been met, with a continuing decline in new infections. Previously, Chicago’s reopening after a stay-at-home order imposed during the pandemic was behind Illinois with stricter standards than the state. – Associated Press

Illinois’ Lake County Starting Up Weddings Again, Virtually

WAUKEGAN, Ill. (AP) — You can’t use the coronavirus pandemic as an excuse not to get married any more — at least not in Lake County. The 19th Judicial Circuit Court suspended marriages and civil unions in March to protect the health of the public but it was scheduled to start officiating weddings and civil unions — virtually — on Monday. The only requirement for the general public is that at least one member of the couple getting married be a Lake County resident. All active-duty members of the military are also eligible. To have a judge officiate at a virtual wedding, couples must call the county clerk’s office to set up an appointment to apply for a marriage license and then visit the clerk of the local circuit court to pay $10 in cash on the day the license is issued. – Associated Press

Restaurants Eagerly Await Reopening This Week

The State of Illinois will enter Phase Four of its pandemic recovery plan this Friday July 26, Governor J.B. Pritzker announced. One of the most talked about aspects of the next phase is that diners will be allowed inside restaurants. A number of restaurants used to serving diners inside have been making a living offering curbside service.  Illinois Restaurant Association President Sam Toia said that the last 12 weeks have been devastating for business. – Bill Wheelhouse – WUIS

2020 Illinois Kids Count Report Shows Improvements But Significant Barriers Remain

Voices for Illinois Children released their 2020 Illinois Kids Count report on health. The report shows improvements in the outcome of children’s health over the last decade, but gaps for health care for children in the state remain. The reports indicates a larger gap for health care for children of color and inequalities in health well-being and other socioeconomic areas for children of race and ethnicity. The state’s overall rank in child well being went from 23 to 24 in the latest national kids count report. – Benjy Jeffords – WUIS

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