Praise for new law protecting disabled Illinoisans

Activists are praising a new law aimed at protecting the safety of Illinoisans receiving state services for mental or developmental disabilities.

CHICAGO (AP) — Activists are praising a new law aimed at protecting the safety of Illinoisans receiving state services for mental or developmental disabilities. Chicago-based Equip for Equality backed the new measure, known as Brian’s Law and says it may help prevent future tragedies. The law is named after an autistic young man named Brian Kent who died at the Kiley Developmental Center in Waukegan in 2002 after suffering multiple injuries. No charges were filed. The Illinois Department of Public Health investigated Kent’s death and cited the center, requiring authorities there to address deficiencies including staff training, a department spokeswoman said. The legislation signed by Gov. Pat Quinn on Friday creates an independent experts team to review any deaths of people getting these state services. Kent’s father, Jim, says his son will "live on" with the new law’s impact. Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.

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