We, the undersigned, call on the Illinois Administration and the General Assembly to defend Illinois home and community based services by taking the following actions in the FY 2013 budget:
PROTECT: People with disabilities, seniors and workers have fought for decades to build programs that serve people with disabilities and seniors in the community, and have fought to raise standards for the workers who are employed by those programs. Limiting eligibility, reducing and/ or cutting services and lowering standards for workers will only damage these vital programs.
INVEST: Serve more people by spending smarter. Home and community based services are the most cost effective way to support people with disabilities and seniors in our own communities. Illinois must ensure that it spends its budget wisely by investing in Medicaid home and community based services. Illinois also needs to invest in creating affordable, accessible, integrated housing for very low-income people with disabilities and seniors.
ENFORCE: Our state must meet the requirements set forward in the three major Illinois Olmstead class action cases: Ligas, Williams, and Colbert. These cases are based on Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act and the idea that federal dollars (i.e., Medicaid) should support people with disabilities in the least restrictive environment.
STRENGTHEN: State-funded programs such as the Home Services Program, the Community Care Program, Centers for Independent Living, the Community Reintegration Program and many others ensure that people with disabilities and seniors can live in the community, and provide jobs for thousands of workers. These programs need adequate funding and up-to-date provider payments.
We, the undersigned organizations, support the fight to protect, invest, enforce and strengthen Illinois home and community based services:
Access Living of Metropolitan Chicago
AIDS Foundation of Chicago
The Arc of Illinois
Barb Pritchard, Community for All Coalition
Chicago Teachers Union
Chicago Women’s AIDS Project
Coalition of Citizens with Disabilities in Illinois (CCDI)
Ellen J. Westley
Equip for Equality
Health & Medicine Policy Research Group
Illinois Network of Centers for Independent Living
Illinois Single-Payer Coalition Chicago
Illinois Valley CIL
Kathy Fischer & NICIL
Lake County Center for Independent Living
Marcia and Mel Rothenberg
National Association of Nurses with Disabilities
Options Center for Independent Living
PACE, Inc. Center for Independent Living
Progress Center for Independent Living
- Kim Liddell, PCIL
SEIU Healthcare Illinois and Indiana
Service Employees International Union Local 73
Shriver Center on Poverty Law
Sonja Rotenberg, Illinois Single Payer Coalition-Chicago
Springfield Area Disability Activists
Springfield Center for Independent Living
Statewide Independent Living Council of Illinois
Supporting Illinois Brothers and Sisters, Inc. (SIBS)
Teri Steinberg & Illinois Association of Microboards and Cooperatives
Will-Grundy Center for Independent Living
To sign onto this letter as an individual or organization, please email Amber Smock of Access Living at firstname.lastname@example.org.