Senator Hunter sits in front of a microphone during a committee hearing.SPRINGFIELD — Building upon her work to establish a task force for missing and murdered Chicago women, State Senator Mattie Hunter advanced a bill Wednesday that would add two seats to the task force reserved for Chicago police officers.

“Local police officers have firsthand experience with missing persons cases,” said Hunter (D-Chicago). “It’s been noted that the data collection processes surrounding these cases is not up to the level it should be. We need to bring the Chicago Police Department to the table to hear what their practices are, how information is being managed and how we can move forward with effective solutions.”

The Task Force on Missing and Murdered Chicago Women, established through legislation Hunter passed in 2022, is studying methods for tracking and collecting data on violence against Chicago women and working to develop strategies to reduce violence and prevent future tragedies. The task force meets monthly and is due to submit its first report to the General Assembly by Dec. 31.

Members of the task force include legislators and representatives from the Illinois State Police, Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police, Illinois Department of Public Health, Cook County Medical Examiner and victim advocacy groups. Hunter’s measure would add two seats to the task force for Chicago Police Department officers, who will be nominated by the Chicago police superintendent.

“This crisis of violence against women requires our attention and a comprehensive approach to action,” said Hunter. “Having experts from all intersecting areas will help bridge the information gap so we can recover these missing women and bring forth justice.”

House Bill 4295 passed the Senate Special Committee on Criminal Law and Public Safety and moves to the full Senate for further consideration.