How to Fight Back in Illinois

On Wednesday, February 7 at 2pm CT (noon PT), a committee of the Illinois legislature will be considering HB 4247, a copycat age verification bill.

If you live in Illinois, here’s how to make your voice heard:

Send An Email

Simply fill out this form to tell your representatives that you oppose HB 4247 (and its companion bill in the Senate).

Submit Hearing Testimony

In Illinois, you can also speak at hearings via Zoom and/or submit written testimony to the committee before a hearing. Here’s how:

1. Write your testimony (letter) and save it as a PDF (click here for sample language).
The filename should include the legislation number, position, and name. ex: HB 4247 Opponent Jane Doe.pdf

2. Create an account on the state legislature website, then go to the Committee Hearings listing for the House

3. Find the committee hearing you want to testify at. If the list is empty, check the Week view

4. Scroll down to the Judiciary – Civil Committee meeting on 2/7/24 and click the button on the right to view the hearing details.

5. Click the button to create a witness slip for HB 4247.

6. If you’d like to speak at the hearing as well, check both boxes on your form.

7. Once you’ve submitted the form, email your PDF to [email protected].
The body of the email should include:

  • Full Name
  • Organization (if applicable)
  • Legislative Measure: HB 4247
  • Committee Hearing Name, Date and Time: Judiciary – Civil Committee Committee, Wednesday, February 7, 2024 2:00 PM
  • Position on Legislative Measure: Opponent
  • Contact Phone Number
  • Preferred Email Address

Then, a member of the committee staff will contact you to confirm your attendance.

For more information, see Committee Hearing Process.pdf

Sample Language

Dear Chairperson Gong-Gershowitz, Vice-Chair Williams, and members of the Judiciary – Civil Committee,

I am writing to express my deep opposition to HB 4247, the age verification mandate for websites with material harmful to minors. I believe this law is a violation of the constitutional right of adults to access legal speech without government interference or surveillance.

I am particularly concerned about the lack of privacy safeguards for consumers in this law. At a  time of rampant identity theft, I am uncomfortable with any system that requires me to share critical identification data with third-party sites. Showing my ID at a liquor store is simply not the same as linking a digital ID to my browsing history. There have already been reports of identity theft in Louisiana due to the law.

Our browsing history is highly sensitive, and I am concerned about the potential surveillance of this data. I do not believe the assurances made in the bill are adequate to prevent monitoring and unauthorized disclosure of this data.

I urge you to reconsider this law and instead focus on education and parental involvement to help protect minors online. Just one-third of parents use any content filters at all — and yet the burden of this law falls on the consumer. It is the duty of parents and guardians to monitor and guide their children’s online activity.

I implore you to listen to the concerns of your constituents and vote NO on HB 4247. Our rights as adults, our privacy as citizens, and the principles of a free and open internet are at stake.

{Your Name}
{Your Address}
{Your Phone Number}