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Mayor of crime-infested Chicago announces that she will wipe out overdue library fees to combat 'generational poverty'

Hard-hitting politics

Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

Chicago libraries will eradicate overdue fines to fight poverty, thanks to Democratic Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot.

The city's public library system automatically locks out users who have accrued $10 in overdue materials fines.

What are the details?

Lightfoot announced the new development in a Monday news release.

"The bold reforms we're taking to make the Chicago Public Library system fine-free and forgive city sticker debt will end the regressive practices disproportionately impacting those who can least afford it, ensure every Chicagoan can utilize our city's services and resources, and eliminate the cycles of debt and generational poverty because of a few mistakes," Lightfoot said in the release.

Lightfoot said the city is not as concerned with the economical aspect of the program.

"This is about educating folks, giving them access to learning, having a safe space where people can come and learn," she said.

"Like too many Chicagoans, I know what it is like to grow up in financially-challenging circumstances and understand what it is like to be just one bill or one mistake away from crushing debt," the mayor added. "The bold reforms we're taking to make the Chicago Public Library system fine-free and forgive City Sticker debt will end the regressive practices disproportionately impacting those who can least afford it, ensure every Chicagoan can utilize our city's services and resources, and eliminate the cycles of debt and generational poverty because of a few mistakes."

The program goes into effect Tuesday.

What else?

Books that are checked out will automatically renew up to 15 times, according to the new guidelines, unless another public library user requests to place a hold on the material in question. If items are not returned within a week of the final due date, the materials will be marked "lost." Accounts will be charged for replacement item costs.

One last thing…
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