Illinois Senate Takes Action to Protect 36,000 Fragile Seniors from Drastic Rauner Cuts to Home Care Services

State lawmakers lend their voice to growing chorus against $120 million cut to the successful Community Care Program

SPRINGFIELD – The following is a statement on behalf of Illinois Alliance for Retired Americans and SEIU Healthcare Illinois in response to passage of House Bill 238 out of the Illinois Senate:

“36,000 seniors, their families, and their caregivers can breathe a small sigh of relief knowing that members in both chambers of the General Assembly voted to stop Governor Rauner’s destructive path of gutting vital services provided via the Community Care Program.

“Rauner’s $120 million cut will remove trusted caregivers and replace them with a complicated and untested system of meal vouchers, Uber drivers, and a revolving door of strangers to provide a piecemeal approach to delivery of critical services. Perhaps worst of all, the 36,000 seniors whom Governor Rauner is targeting are not guaranteed to receive ANY services at all under rules submitted to the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR).

“Impacted seniors will experience reduced care – on average a 31% reduction. Those seniors who are unable or refuse to navigate this confusing system will see their independence and ability to age at home with dignity threatened, leading to premature nursing home care placement and taxpayers will be left footing the bill.

“Our coalition sincerely thanks the members of the General Assembly who voted to protect their aging constituents, especially chief sponsors Senator Daniel Biss and Representative Greg Harris. We hold out hope that Governor Rauner respects the will of Illinois’s seniors and the General Assembly. He should choose the path that guarantees the best outcomes for seniors, their families, and Illinois taxpayers by abandoning his proposed cuts.”

 

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