Illinois hunters would have a new fashion option — blaze pink — under legislation filed by metro-east lawmakers.
The bill filed by Rep. Jerry Costello II, D-Smithton, would allow hunters to wear blaze pink or blaze orange. Hunters currently are required to wear blaze orange during certain types of hunting, such as firearm deer season and upland game hunting.
Costello said hunter safety is his primary interest.
“The University of Wisconsin did a study, and they found that the human eye picks up blaze pink more distinctly than it does blaze orange,” he said.
The same study found that, for deer, pink is actually less noticeable than orange.
Costello said he patterned the bill after similar legislation that is pending in Wisconsin.
In addition, he said pink might be more favorable to young, female hunters. He said young girls might be more inclined to get involved in the sport if pink is an option for them.
“I hunt with my daughters,” he said. “Females are the fastest-growing sector of hunters right now.”
The bill is House Bill 4337. Co-sponsors include Rep. Brandon Phelps, D-Harrisburg, and Rep. Dan Beiser, D-Alton.
Costello said he thinks the Illinois Department of Natural Resources would be receptive to the proposal.
“I think it’s something they’re open to considering,” he said.
In Wisconsin, there has been some opposition to the measure, though it has passed the Assembly and was scheduled for a Senate vote Wednesday. Opponents included some women hunters who viewed the measure as sexist, and others who see it as pandering to women.