State of Illinois
2021 and 2022


Introduced 2/9/2021, by Sen. Suzy Glowiak Hilton


New Act

    Creates the Higher Education Housing and Opportunities Act. Requires an institution of higher education (including a business, technical, or vocational school) to designate at least one employee who works within the financial aid department, campus housing services, or any other appropriate office or department, as may be determined by the institution, to serve as a liaison between the institution and a homeless student or student in care who is enrolled at the institution. Sets forth the responsibilities of the liaison, the Board of Higher Education, and the institution. Effective August 1, 2022.

LRB102 10285 CMG 15612 b






SB0190LRB102 10285 CMG 15612 b

1    AN ACT concerning education.
2    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3represented in the General Assembly:
4    Section 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the Higher
5Education Housing and Opportunities Act.
6    Section 5. Definitions. As used in this Act:
7    "Institution of higher education" or "institution" means
8any publicly or privately operated university, college,
9community college, business, technical, or vocational school,
10or other educational institution offering degrees and
11instruction beyond the secondary school level.
12    "Student experiencing homelessness" or "homeless student"
13means an individual enrolled in an institution who lacks or is
14at imminent risk of lacking a fixed, regular, and adequate
15nighttime residence or whose parent or legal guardian is
16unable or unwilling to provide shelter and care and includes a
17homeless individual as defined under the federal
18McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act. For the purposes of
19this definition, the term "fixed, regular, and adequate
20nighttime residence" does not include residence in an
21institution of higher education's on-campus housing.
22    "Student in care" means any person, regardless of age, who
23is or was under the care and legal custody of the Department of



SB0190- 2 -LRB102 10285 CMG 15612 b

1Children and Family Services, including youth for whom the
2Department has court-ordered legal responsibility, youth who
3aged out of care at age 18 or older, or youth formerly under
4care who have been adopted and were the subject of an adoption
5assistance agreement or who have been placed in private
6guardianship and were the subject of a subsidized guardianship
8    Section 10. Housing and Opportunities that are Useful for
9Students' Excellence (HOUSE) liaison.
10    (a) In an effort to provide assistance to students
11experiencing homelessness, each institution of higher
12education shall designate at least one staff member to serve
13as a liaison to assist homeless students enrolled at the
14institution. The designated staff member may be employed in
15the office of financial aid, in campus housing services, or in
16any other appropriate office or department as determined by
17the institution.
18    (b) The liaison designated under subsection (a) shall
19offer assistance and resources to any homeless student or
20student in care enrolled at the institution. The liaison shall
21have all of the following responsibilities:
22        (1) To understand provisions pertaining to the
23    financial aid eligibility of homeless students, including
24    eligibility as an independent student under the federal
25    Higher Education Act of 1965.



SB0190- 3 -LRB102 10285 CMG 15612 b

1        (2) To identify services and resources that are
2    available to and appropriate for a homeless student.
3        (3) To assist a homeless student or student in care in
4    applying for and receiving federal and State financial aid
5    and available services.
6        (4) To track and monitor the graduation rate and
7    retention rate of homeless students and students in care
8    enrolled at the institution.
9        (5) To report annually to the Board of Higher
10    Education the number of homeless students and students in
11    care enrolled at the institution. The report must include
12    the number of students who received assistance or services
13    through the liaison and the type of service or assistance
14    received by the student. If the information is available,
15    the report may describe the outcome for the student as a
16    result of the services or assistance he or she received
17    through the liaison.
18        (6) To act as an intermediary between a homeless
19    student or student in care and the office of financial
20    aid, student support services, and campus housing
21    services.
22        (7) To connect a homeless student or student in care
23    to a local continuum of care program.
24        (8) To publish on the institution's website
25    information about the services and resources available
26    through the institution's liaison, as well as contact



SB0190- 4 -LRB102 10285 CMG 15612 b

1    information for local, State, and federal services.
2        (9) To develop a plan to provide access to on-campus
3    housing or to suitable off-campus housing between academic
4    breaks to homeless students or students in care enrolled
5    at the institution.
6        (10) To train the institution's employees to identify
7    students experiencing homelessness and to refer those
8    students to the liaison.
9    At his or her discretion, the liaison may provide any
10additional service he or she reasonably believes is within the
11purview of the role of liaison.
12    (c) The Board of Higher Education shall adopt rules,
13policies, and procedures to implement and administer this Act.
14The Board must:
15        (1) provide access to a training program developed by
16    a homeless advocacy organization;
17        (2) require a liaison to receive training on an annual
18    basis;
19        (3) collaborate with the State Coordinator for
20    McKinney-Vento Homeless Education and the contact liaisons
21    designated under Section 11432(g)(1)(J)(ii) of Title 42 of
22    the United States Code to facilitate the efficient
23    transition of homeless students from secondary to
24    postsecondary education and provide homeless students and
25    students in care information about support services,
26    including financial aid, on-campus and off-campus housing,



SB0190- 5 -LRB102 10285 CMG 15612 b

1    food and meal plan programs, and counseling services, and
2    other resources and any other relevant information to
3    assist these students; and
4        (4) collect and compile data to be issued in an annual
5    report about students experiencing homelessness and
6    students in care enrolled at academic institutions.
7    (d) After 3 academic years, if the data submitted to the
8Board of Higher Education indicates that the number of
9students experiencing homelessness or the number of students
10in care exceeds 1% or more of the student body of the
11institution, the institution must create a position whose
12primary function is to carry out the responsibilities of a
13liaison as described in subsection (b).
14    (e) Each institution that provides on-campus housing for
15students enrolled at the institution shall:
16        (1) grant priority for on-campus housing to students
17    experiencing homelessness and students in care who are
18    enrolled at the institution, including but not limited to,
19    access to on-campus housing that remains open during
20    academic breaks, and waive fees for the on-campus housing
21    during academic breaks;
22        (2) allow students experiencing homelessness and
23    students in care who are enrolled part-time at the
24    institution to access on-campus housing;
25        (3) provide information about the availability of
26    on-campus housing to students experiencing homelessness



SB0190- 6 -LRB102 10285 CMG 15612 b

1    and students in care; and
2        (4) provide information about the services and
3    assistance offered by the institution regarding
4    homelessness in financial aid packets and admission
5    packets and on the institution's website.
6    Section 99. Effective date. This Act takes effect August
71, 2022.