Sweet Corn Delivery 1CHICAGO – Illinois Senate President John Cullerton thanked a group of downstate farmers for delivering a truckload of sweet corn Friday to Common Pantry on the city’s North Side to help area families.

“I appreciate their generosity. This is a tremendous opportunity for people from different parts of the state to work together, realize we’re all neighbors and remind ourselves of how great the people of Illinois can be,” Cullerton said.

Cullerton met the farmers at Common Pantry and helped unload the corn. Common Pantry will distribute the load to other area pantries.

Jeremy Thomas and his sons were among the downstate contingent making the delivery. Thomas farms near Pittsfield and is vice president for the Pike County Farm Bureau, which has built a relationship with Cullerton through a program that connects downstate farmers with Chicago lawmakers.

Sweet Corn Deliver 2Thomas said Pike County farmers routinely donate to local pantries and similar relief efforts, but this is a chance to get a new perspective.

“It’s a wonderful experience. This is our second year. It’s one of those things that makes you feel good about helping other people … people all around the state need help. This is so much different from where we live. It’s just another perspective to see, that people are in need no matter whether you’re in a big city or in a small community,” Thomas said.

Common Pantry, located on North Damen Avenue in Chicago, has provided emergency food and social services since 1967 when it was founded to combat hunger and food insecurity in North Side neighborhoods. The organization provides weekly food distribution, home delivery to elderly clients, monthly produce distribution, a weekly hot lunch program and other services.

“Today’s visit and donation to Common Pantry was nothing short of amazing. The 1,000 pounds of corn donated by the Thomas family will go to folks from all over the North Side who struggle to find ways to feed their families. We were happy to welcome Jeremy, his two sons and nephew, as well as representatives from the Pike and Cook County Farm Bureaus and Senate President Cullerton. No doubt those who were here this morning left feeling our worlds are actually more similar than they are different. What prevailed was the universal sense of community and desire to help others,” said Common Pantry Executive Director Margaret O’Conor.

Outreach program part of partnership with Senate President Cullerton

CHICAGO — In an effort to help feed Chicago-area families and bridge regional differences, downstate farmers will deliver a truckload of sweet corn Friday, July 27 to the North Side’s Common Pantry for distribution to other area food pantries.

The delivery is the result of an outreach program through the Illinois Farm Bureau that pairs Chicago lawmakers with downstate farmers. In this case, 6th District Senator and Illinois Senate President John Cullerton teamed up with the Pike County Farm Bureau, whose farmers made a similar delivery last year.

“To me, this is Illinois at its finest. We’ve got people who live hundreds of miles apart, coming together, helping each other and in doing so learning about all the different parts of our state and what’s great about them. I can’t thank the Pike County farmers enough for making the trek and helping out,” said Cullerton.

Common Pantry has provided emergency food and social services since 1967 when it was founded to combat hunger and food insecurity in North Side neighborhoods. The organization provides weekly food distribution, home delivery to elderly clients, monthly produce distribution, a weekly hot lunch program and other services.

“For the approximately 85 families visiting Common Pantry on a weekly basis, the relationships and donation streams through regional farmers like those from Pike County, as well as local community gardens, are extremely critical. Our mission is to provide healthy food and support to our neighbors in need. This donation is a perfect example of how those producing fresh food can help those who struggle to find ways to feed their families,” said Common Pantry’s Executive Director Margaret O’Conor.

The delivery is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. on Friday, July 27. Common Pantry is located at 3744 N Damen Ave, Chicago, IL 60618

Senate President Cullerton, Common Pantry leaders and farmers from Pike County will be available.

Event Information:
Who: Pike County farmers, Senate President John Cullerton and Common Pantry leaders.
What: Delivering and unloading truckload of sweet corn to North Side food pantry.
When: 9:30 a.m., Friday, July 27
Where: Common Pantry, 3744 N. Damen Ave., Chicago, IL 60618

Illinois Senate President John J. Cullerton said Trump’s overdue reversal on immigrant families still leaves many important questions unanswered.
 
“It’s about time President Trump finally recognized the inhumane and obscene policy of separating children from their families was a mistake. But his decision to reverse that policy is merely a first step. More needs to be done. What is the president going to do with these children and their families? Addressing that question is going to require more tough decisions and rational, adult leadership from the White House. An opportunity exists at this moment to recognize the reality we all live in and take meaningful action on immigration reform. I hope the president and Congress will seize the opportunity.”

SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Senate overwhelmingly voted to oppose the government creating a database to track people by their religion, sending a message to the White House and Washington that the Land of Lincoln won’t be part of such narrow-minded politics.

“With this, Illinois sends a message. The government forcing people to register their religion is fundamentally un-American. It conjures up ugly imagery of the past that should never be repeated,” said Illinois Senate President John J. Cullerton, the lead sponsor of the legislation opposing religious registries.

Cullerton’s proposal – Senate bill 3488 – comes in response to anti-Muslim rhetoric from then-candidate and now-President Donald Trump. The legislation simply states that Illinois would not participate in any such database or registry of faith followers.

The proposal passed the Senate 39-0. It now advances to the Illinois House.