SHOREWOOD – State Senator Meg Loughran Cappel urges area residents to show appreciation to emergency personnel on First Responders Day, which falls on Friday, Oct. 28.

Firefighter equipement fire resistant trousers and helmet emergency services

“Every day, our first responders and their families make sacrifices to serve a cause greater than themselves,” said Loughran Cappel (D-Shorewood). “We should honor and thank our heroes not just during this day of recognition – but every day.”

First Responders Day specifically thanks 911 dispatchers, as well as firefighters, police officers, emergency medical technicians and paramedics for their commitment to Illinois public safety.

Loughran Cappel reminds residents to extend gratitude to first responders year-round for their dedication and remember those lost in the line of duty. 

“I will continue to work to ensure our first responders receive the recognition and resources they deserve for their dedication to our communities,” Loughran Cappel said. “I urge residents to thank our first responders year-round for their endless sacrifices to preserving our safety.” 

Cappel urges residents to recognize the contributions of first responders in their communities with ceremonies and activities.

Category: Press Releases

SHOREWOOD – As college application season kicks off, State Senator Meg Loughran Cappel is encouraging students and their families to take advantage of several state and federal relief opportunities related to financial aid, student loans and college affordability.

Young man writing college or university application form with pen and paper. Student applying or filling document. Scholarship, grant or admission. School website in laptop.

“As a mother of college-aged students, I know firsthand how confusing the college admissions process can be,” said Loughran Cappel. “It’s a stressful enough time for students and their families – they don’t need the added worries about how to apply for financial assistance or wondering if they’ll qualify for help.”

Under the federal plan for one-time student loan forgiveness announced recently by the president, students who received Federal Pell Grants can have up to $20,000 in debt forgiven and students with non-Pell Grant loans can have up to $10,000 in debt forgiven if their individual income is less than $125,000. The application is available at and must be completed by Dec. 31, 2023.

Despite a temporary block on the program from the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals, federal authorities still encourage borrowers to apply as the block does not impact the ability of the Department of Education to collect and review applications.

In addition, employees of a U.S. federal, state, local or tribal government or non-profit organization may be eligible to have their remaining balance forgiven after making 120 payments while working for a qualifying employer under the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program. The Illinois Student Assistance Commission is assisting students and families who have questions about the program or need help determining their eligibility through informational webinars. The PSLF Limited Waiver ends Oct. 31, 2022, so anyone who thinks they might qualify should apply as soon as possible.

Finally, the 2023-24 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) is now available, making this the perfect time for anyone who might be interested in attending college next year to apply for financial aid. Illinois students who are ineligible for federal financial aid can check out the Alternative Application for Illinois Financial Aid to apply for the state MAP Grant and institutional aid.

“College application season should be an exciting time – not a stressful one,” said Loughran Cappel. “I encourage students and their families to take advantage of the number of opportunities available to help them tackle the process.”

Category: Press Releases

WILL COUNTY, Ill. – The COVID-19 pandemic further exacerbated the health inequities facing communities throughout Illinois. Three organizations in Will County have been awarded funding to implement health equity strategies, State Senators Meg Loughran Cappel and Eric Mattson announced Friday.  


“Every person – no matter their ZIP code or economic status – should have access to essential health care needs,” said Loughran Cappel (D-Shorewood). “Through collaborative efforts, we can ensure we are putting the state on a path toward greater post-pandemic healing.”

Activating Relationships in Illinois for Systemic Equity (ARISE) is a joint initiative of the Illinois Department of Public Health’s Center for Minority Health Services and The Center for Rural Health, in collaboration with Well-Being and Equity (WE) in the World.

ARISE for Will County, Junior Medic LLC, and Coordinated Care Alliance Will County are three of the 18 organizations across Illinois awarded funding to address systemic health disparities highlighted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Health inequities and lack of access to care were brought to the forefront during the pandemic,” said Mattson (D-Joliet) “No person should have to struggle without basic necessities like food, medications and other resources. This initiative will help combat those health inequities head on.”

Funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, ARISE intends to support socio-economically disadvantaged and historically marginalized communities outside of Cook County that have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19. Further, organizations will be able to address enduring health inequities in their communities that have been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The selected ARISE Community Equity Zone communities will engage in a rigorous “learning-and-doing” capacity building program to advance health equity in the short, medium and long term. The community coalitions will address inequities in mental, physical and social well-being in communities that are experiencing the brunt of these disparities by connecting people to vaccinations, food, and other well-being needs. They will also address underlying community needs such as humane housing, reliable transportation, and the root causes of these inequities, including racism and poverty.

To learn more about the ARISE initiative, people can visit

Category: Press Releases

PLAINFIELD – To gather input from the generations of the future, State Senator Meg Loughran Cappel championed a Youth Advisory Board, which is accepting applications through Nov. 1. Cappel YouthAdvisoryBoard

“Students in high school and college are the leaders of our future,” said Loughran Cappel (D-Shorewood). “This generation is bright and innovative and their voices matter. Together, we can make Illinois a better place for all.”

Loughran Cappel’s Youth Advisory Board will meet quarterly to discuss issues that are important to young people and how she can use her position as a Senator to better serve younger generations. The board will be made up of students from local high schools and colleges.

Students interested in getting involved in state government and having their voice heard should apply for a position no later than Nov. 1. Applicants will be selected Nov. 15 and the first meeting will be Dec. 7. This class of members of the Youth Advisory Board will hold their positions until May 2023.

“The Youth Advisory Board is a great opportunity to have your voice heard and impact legislation,” said Loughran Cappel. “Some of the best pieces of legislation come from conversations I’ve had in the community.”

To apply, students can visit People can call Loughran Cappel’s office at 815-267-6119 with questions.

Category: Press Releases

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Springfield Office
Wm. Stratton Building
Section C, Room M
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-0052

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20660 Caton Farm Rd. Unit D
Crest Hill, IL 60403
(815) 267-6119

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