SPRINGFIELD – The Prisoner Review Board would receive much-needed updates and training to ensure a more informed and thorough case review process under a measure supported by State Senator Laura Murphy.

“The responsibilities of Prisoner Review Board members are vital, which is why we need to equip them with the appropriate tools and training to make the most informed decisions possible,” said Murphy (D-Des Plaines). “By voting for this measure, we are strengthening the parole review process and putting protections in place that prioritize the safety of victims.”

The Prisoner Review Board imposes release conditions for incarcerated individuals on mandatory supervised release, and notifies victims and their families when individuals are going to be released from custody.

To further protect victims, the board would have to notify victims in advance of releases, revocation hearings and supervised release. A new task force would be charged with studying the notification process, victim involvement in hearings, victim safety planning, board member qualifications and specialized trainings for the board members and judiciary.

Under this measure, the Prisoner Review Board would be required to provide victims, including those with protective orders, with information regarding submitting a victim impact statement. The board would be required to consider every impact statement that is submitted. In addition, members of the PRB would need to undergo annual training to further their learning and understanding of domestic violence and gender-based violence.

“Through this legislation, we are putting an emphasis on victims and giving them a stronger voice to mitigate the impact of their experiences,” Murphy said. “We need to keep our communities safe, but also ensure those who are released have been successfully rehabilitated.”

House Bill 681 passed the Senate on Sunday.