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Executive Order Number 19-4

January 18, 2019

Executive Order Number 04-19





WHEREAS, Illinois veterans have selflessly served our nation, sacrificing their comfort and safety to defend our freedom and security; and

WHEREAS,  the spouses of veterans have also sacrificed for our country by steadfastly supporting veterans as they devoted their lives to our protection; and

WHEREAS,  an appreciation for their service, Illinois owes a moral debt of gratitude and the solemn obligation to treat veterans and their spouses with the utmost dignity and respect by the State and, as veterans age, the State must be able to provide quality long-term care in the Illinois Veterans' Homes; and

WHEREAS,  the State must ensure that all Illinois Veterans' Homes provide a safe, healthy environment where veterans and their spouses receive all necessary care; and

WHEREAS, residents and their family members must be assured that the Veterans' Homes have in place and are carefully following policies, protocols and procedures that have been reviewed by healthcare experts and are designed to protect the health and safety of all residents; and

WHEREAS,  as part of protecting their health and safety, Illinois Veterans' Homes also must have in place and carefully follow policies, protocols and procedures mandating appropriate and timely communication regarding health and safety issues with residents and their families, as well as with other State, federal and local agencies involved in ensuring high-quality care for residents of the Veterans' Homes; and

WHEREAS,  employees of the Veterans' homes must be well trained on the necessary policies, protocols and procedures to protect the health and safety of residents and employees, as well as provided with the necessary resources and tools to deliver services effectively and in a manner that fully protects the health and safety of residents; and

WHEREAS,  the agencies and departments of the State of Illinois charged with serving Illinois veterans and their families must be accountable to the people of Illinois, and address any areas in which services have fallen short of this high standard; and

THEREFORE, I , JB Pritzker, Governor of Illinois, by virtue of the executive authority vested in me by Article V of the Constitution of the State of Illinois, hereby order as follows:

     I. Comprehensive Review of the Department of Veterans Affairs Health and Safety Process and Procedure

The Department of Veterans' Affairs ("'Department") shall, within 120 days of the effective date of this Executive Order, provide a report to the Governor containing a comprehensive review of weaknesses, strengths, and opportunities for improvement of policies, protocols and procedures related to ensuring the health and safety of residents and employees at Illinois Veterans' Homes, including, but not limited to policies, protocols and procedures related to:

          A.  Identifying and remediating health and safety issues for residents and employees, including health issues that may present public health emergencies;

          B.  Communicating within the Department and with other State, federal and local agencies regarding health and safety issues for residents and employees, including public health emergencies;
          C.  Communicating with residents, family members, and the public regarding health and safety issues at the Veterans' Homes, including public health emergencies; and

          D.  Determining and executing appropriate and necessary maintenance schedules at the Veterans' Homes that protect the health and safety of residents and employees.

In conducting the comprehensive review required by this Executive Order, the Department shall work with the Illinois Department of Public Health, and shall consult, as needed, with State and national experts, residents and their family members and employees involved in providing critical care to residents.

     II. Savings Clause

Nothing in this Executive Order shall be construed to contravene any federal or State law or regulation. Nothing in this Executive Order shall affect or alter the existing statutory powers of any State agency or be construed as a reassignment or reorganization of any State agency.

     III. Prior Executive Orders

This Executive Order supersedes any contrary provision of any other prior Executive Order.

     IV. Severability Clause

If any part of this Executive Order is found to be invalid by a court of competent jurisdiction. the remaining provisions shall remain in full force and effect. The provisions of this Executive Order are severable.

     V. Effective Date

This Executive Order shall take effect immediately upon its filing with the Secretary of State.


JB Pritzker, Governor

Issued by Governor: January I8, 2019
Filed with Secretary of State: ____