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Afternoon Edition: Dec. 14, 2021

Today’s update is a 5-minute read that will brief you on the day’s biggest stories.

Accessing affordable and stable housing is becoming a serious concern for older adults as Cook County’s senior population continues to grow. 
Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times file

Good afternoon. Here’s the latest news you need to know in Chicago. It’s about a 5-minute read that will brief you on today’s biggest stories.

This afternoon will be mostly cloudy with a high near 52 degrees. Tonight will be cloudy with scattered showers and a low around 49. Tomorrow will be cloudy with a 20% chance of rain and a high near 65 degrees.

Top story

Chicago’s older adult population growing, becoming rent burdened: report

Providing affordable housing in Cook County is becoming increasingly important with the rise over the past decade of financially vulnerable residents aged 65 and older, a new report concluded.

The report, by the Institute for Housing Studies at DePaul University, said the county gained nearly 80,000 older adult households between 2012 and 2019 — a 19.4% increase. The city accounted for nearly 45,000 of those households, while 35,000 live in suburban Cook County.

There are about 5.2 million people in Cook County, according to the latest U.S. Census figures. More than 776,000 of those residents are 65 or older.

The growth in the county’s older population follows a national trend of seniors as the fastest-growing age group. The growth is fueled by an aging Baby Boomer demographic, experts said.

Households headed by older adults are rapidly increasing among Black, Latino and Asian residents, the report found. Between 2012 and 2019 there was an 80% increase in older-adult Latino households, nearly 60% growth among Asian households and a 23% rise in Black households. That is significantly higher than the 9.2% increase in the numbers of older adult-headed households that identified as white.

Chicago’s older adult households are also largely lower income, with 35.4% of households earning less than 30% of an area’s median income, or “very low income,” the report states. That’s twice as many as those that live in suburban Cook County.

According to the report, most older adult households own their own properties countywide, but the share that rent is rapidly growing in the city. About 60% of the growing number of older adult households in Chicago is made up of Black and Latino renters, and the bulk of those are very low income.

That means nearly 60% of older adult renters in the city are cost-burdened, paying more than 30% of their income on rent alone.

Manny Ramos has more on the costs facing Chicago’s older population here.

More news you need

  1. Former state Rep. Edward “Eddie” Acevedo pleaded guilty to tax evasion today, having been caught up in the yearslong federal investigation revolving around former House Speaker Michael Madigan. Acevedo admitted he failed as a self-employed consultant to keep sufficient accounting records, and he ultimately shorted the government by about $37,000 in taxes.
  2. A Lincoln Park man who had his driver’s license suspended over a decade ago allegedly slammed into two women on the sidewalk, killing one of them in a Wrigleyville hit-and-run over the summer, county prosecutors said. Brett Dimick, 30, is being charged with running a stop sign and killing 27-year-old cancer survivor Sophie Elizabeth Allen before fleeing from the vehicle.
  3. A 28-year-old man has been charged with attempted murder in connection with a stabbing in September in Logan Square — which police are connecting to two other attacks where a machete was used. He is also charged with one felony count of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, police said.
  4. Illinois moved closer to allowing midwifery to be a licensed profession today under legislation signed into law by Gov. J.B. Pritzker. The legislation allows for midwives to go through a newly created licensing process to provide care before, during and after delivery that can be “life saving,” Pritzker said.
  5. A City Council committee today endorsed a 297-unit residential development near O’Hare Airport that backers said would provide affordable options in a community where housing prices have escalated. The endorsement dealt a blow for Mayor Lori Lightfoot against aldermanic veto power over zoning in their wards.
  6. “Spider-Man: No Way Home” is an innovative, exciting, funny and heart-tugging existential deep dive into the multi-verse, writes Richard Roeper in his three-star review of the new film. Opening in theaters Thursday, you can read Roeper’s full review of the superhero movie here.

A bright one

Candace Parker announces she is expecting a baby with wife

It’s hard to imagine how Candace Parker could top winning a WNBA championship in her hometown, but this afternoon she did. Parker announced via Instagram that she and her wife of two years, Anna Petrakova, are expecting their first child together.

“We’ve always dreamed of growing our family,” Parker wrote in her post. “It’s surreal that we now have a baby on the way! Lailaa is pumped to be a big sister.”

Parker has been candid about her desire to have more children over the last year.

She gave birth to her daughter, Lailaa, a year after being drafted by the Los Angeles Sparks with the first overall pick in the 2008 WNBA Draft. Parker has shared every moment of her career with her now 12-year-old daughter since.

Candace Parker shared via instagram that she and her wife, Anna (center) are expecting a baby in the new year.
Candace Parker/Instagram

Parker returned to the WNBA six weeks after Lailaa’s birth in May and that following January traveled to Russia for her overseas commitments. Her mother, Sara, traveled with her and was at every game with Lailaa. Parker would nurse her daughter at halftime.

Sara said in a past interview with the Sun-Times her daughter has played some of her best games on little to no sleep. When Parker won her second WNBA title in October, Lailaa was present for every game and celebratory moment. After beating the Phoenix Mercury in Game 4, 80-74, Parker thanked Lailaa in her championship post-game press conference.

“I have a picture of Lailaa in Minnesota [when we won the championship in 2016],” Parker said. “She’s yelling ‘Mom, we did it!’ I have that picture on my wall in the office. Before I decided to come here, I asked her if it was ok if I came to Chicago. She said, ‘I want another picture like that.’ It’s crazy because she came out to the court again and said ‘We did it.’”

“I owe everything I am to her.”

Annie Costabile has more on Parker’s big announcement here.

From the press box

Your daily question ☕

Is “Elf on the Shelf” friend or foe to parents during the busy holiday season?

Email us (please include your first name and where you live) and we might include your answer in the next Afternoon Edition.

Yesterday, we asked you: What’s your favorite holiday treat to make?

Here’s what some of you said…

“Ponche Navideño, which is also sometimes known as Ponche Mexicano, is a traditional Mexican fruit beverage.” — Omar Ramos

“The spritz cookies that my dad used to make.” — Linda Brons Douglas

“Prime rib — go big or go home, folks.” — Matthew Michel

“I make a butter cookie from my grandmother’s recipe(it's about 100 years old) and sugar cookies I found in Tasha Tudor’s Christmas book back in the 70s. Real butter and sugar in both! So yummy! I only make them at Christmas.” — Beverly Hajek Cooper

“Buñuelos the best during the holiday season.” — Matilde Rosiles

“Ginger cookies or sugar cookies, from scratch.” — Patrea Curry

“Rum cake.” — Linda Leslie Arnold

“Arroz con dulce (Puerto Rican rice pudding)” — Elsie Ponceña Cruz

“Reservations for dinner!” — Daun Heckler Cloos

Thanks for reading the Chicago Afternoon Edition. Got a story you think we missed? Email us here.

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