Taxing “Life’s Essentials” is Just Plain Wrong

Let’s Eliminate ALL Sales Taxes on Food. Medicine, and Medical Appliances in Illinois

Last year’s Illinois budget called for the temporary suspension of the state’s sales tax on groceries through June 30, 2023.

It was a good thing to do for the hard working people of Illinois help cope with inflation a bit.  But, I don’t think that was good enough.

 “Life’s Essentials” should never have been taxed in the first place. We can fix that.

1 in 9 children in Illinois face hunger and nearly 20% of Illinois residents said they’ve cut pills in half or skipped doses due to costs, while another 21% didn’t fill prescriptions due to costs.

Illinois is one of only 13 states that impose sales tax on groceries. Illinois is also the only state that taxes prescription drugs at the state level.

Even worse, medical appliances such as crutches, canes, wheelchairs, walkers, braces and a number of other essential medical needs are taxed at the maximum sales tax rate where they are purchased, for example 10.25% in Chicago and not much less everywhere else in Illinois.

Petition Drive for Repeal

1)   A statewide petition drive has been initiated to gather public support for the permanent elimination (repeal) of state and ALL local sales taxes on:

  • Basic foods such as bread, milk, cheese, baby food and formula, fresh meats, poultry, non-gourmet seafood, fish, fruits, nuts, vegetables, and other natural foods.
  • All prescription drugs and non-prescription pain relievers such as aspirin, acetaminophen, and ibuprofen, cough suppressants, antihistamines, antacids, laxatives, and diarrhea remedies.
  • Medical Appliances such as, but not limited to, crutches or canes, wheelchairs, walkers, and braces.
    2)   The petition shall is available for download and circulation to facilitate the collection of signatures.

Collecting Signatures – Who can sign

Because the petition itself is not a ballot initiative:

  • There is no minimum number of signatures required nor deadline,
  • Any resident of Illinois, 18 or over, can sign whether they are registered voters or not,
  • Since every wage earner is technically a stakeholder in this repeal effort as well, any person under 18 of legal working age, that is or has been employed, may also sign this petition and add (WT) after their printed name to identify themselves as a “working teen.”

Look for this sign or poster to sign the repeal petition.

We need everyone on board to have any chance of getting this done.

How to Help

  • Look for announcements of public signings on social media,
  • Download the petition and ask your family and friends to sign. Then mail them to us,
  • Download the petition and collect signatures in public places and events, Then mail them to us,
  • Share the repeal efforts on social media,
  • Write Letters to the Editor on why you believe that the sales taxes on food and medicine should be repealed.
  • Volunteer to be a regional organizer and/or collector in your area.

Signed Petition sheets  should be mailed to:


PO Box 21

Marengo, IL 60152


Peter Janko
‪Phone: 779-548-2962

We prefer that you sign our paper petition as it will have more impact on legislators. Dut if it unlikely that you will have an opportunity to sign the paper petition, please sign our parallel petition on Change.Org below.

Your signature is very important in sending the message to our legislators in Springfield that taxing “Life’s Essentials” is just plain wrong.  The more signatures, the better chance we have of getting these taxes replealed.

Show that you care. Send the message to Springfield!
If you don’t care, neither will the Legislature.

Peter Janko for Illinois – P.O. Box 21 – Marengo, IL 60152