This week in six cities across the state, people with disabilities, home care workers, and disability rights advocates united to denounce proposed cuts to home care services. In Springfield, Rockford, Marion, Peoria, Chicago, and East St. Louis workers and consumers held protests outside of state offices, DRS offices, and at the Thompson Center in Chicago calling on Governor Quinn to stop cuts to home care and invest in good jobs for home care workers. Activists collected signatures on letters that were faxed to Governor Quinn and brandished signs reminding onlookers that ‘there’s no place like home.’
As we head into Mother’s Day weekend, mothers who rely on home care like Pat Whitman in Rockford also took the opportunity to speak out about the fact that home care services allow her to remain living in her home, surrounded by family and
loved ones. “My home care worker allows me to stay in my community and with my family, where I want to be. Cuts to home care services would not only end the independence I enjoy right now, but would also cut me off from my children because I’d be forced into institutional care. These cuts are wrong for Illinois – the services people like me receive are critical to our lives,” Whitman said.
Rockford home care worker Heather Lindstrom also shared her perspective as a mother who relies on her job through the Home ServicesProgram to support her family. “My consumer relies on me for a lot and I take pride in the quality care I provide for her. It’s getting harder and harder to get her everything she needs in the hours I’m allowed to work and talk about cuts would mean her hours would be slashed even further, and she won’t get the care she needs. It would also make it much harder for me to support my family with even lower take home pay,” said Lindstrom. “We need to invest in quality home care services and jobs.”
Check out the video below from the action at the JR Thompson Center in Chicago: