Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Details Emerge of May Revise Impact on People with Disabilities

Sacramento, CA – A day after the Governor’s May Revision to his 2011-2012 budget proposal was released, the impact of the budget proposals on people with disabilities is becoming more evident.  The budget includes revenues needed to stave off billions more in cuts identified by the Legislative Analysts Office as options in case 2009 tax increases were allowed to expire.  However, buried in the budget are details of program reductions that – on top of more than $6 billion in health and human services cuts made earlier this year – would further dismantle essential services for people with disabilities who have been constantly targeted for more cuts in each new budget proposal.

These include:

      Complete elimination of Adult Day Health Centers that provide essential services for the most vulnerable and at-risk seniors and adults with disabilities, putting recipients of these services at risk of being placed in nursing homes.

      Severe reductions to the In-Home Supportive Services Public Authorities, which improve home care safety and provide training to providers and people disabilities who need these services and supports to live in their homes instead of nursing homes. The 37% funding cut is expected to force many Public Authorities to shut their doors.

      Continued reductions to Developmental Services that provide independent living support and skills to children and adults with disabilities and their families. 

      Hasty implementation of forced managed healthcare for seniors and people with disabilities. The lack of adequate preparation and planning for this huge shift of thousands of people puts many vulnerable people at risk.

      Lifting the mandate for counties to be responsible to provide school-based services to children with mental illnesses, reversing an important policy that provided for better quality and more effective mental health services.

      Proposals to eliminate the Department of Mental Health and Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs, raising questions over how critical services will administered going forward.

“While this budget avoided billions in cuts that could occur if existing revenues are not maintained, the details of several May Revise proposals create concern for people with disabilities,” said Teresa Favuzzi, Executive Director of the California Foundation for Independent Living Centers. “Taken together, and on top of cuts to critical services made earlier this year --these unacceptable proposals mark a retreat from California’s obligation to promote the most independent living possible for people with disabilities.  We urge Gov. Brown and legislators to consider the many revenue options – from oil severance to increased alcohol taxes -- which would obviate the need for these cuts and which experts say can be done without damage to the economy.”

1 comment:

  1. Adult Day Health Care elimination will only increase the cost on other programs and it is possible that there will be some who die because adequate care or services are not provided – this meets the GOP way of thinking, except it transfers additional burdens of cost to other programs already under-funded and over-worked.
    Defund the Public Authority is another GOP belief that individuals who are elderly or disabled need not have a voice within the system. So, remove the PA!
    Continue taking away from one of the most vulnerable parts of society because they cannot speak for themselves. Go back to institutionalization style of providing services where they do as the government says. This takes productive individuals out of sight and mind for the GOP.
    Lifting a mandate for counties to be responsible for school-based services to children with mental illnesses is already wrong – they claim that a mental disability is an “illness?” Come on, this only demonstrates they have no ideas what is happening outside of their little cubicles. Our educational system is already far under-funded for individuals with special needs and they are going to lift a mandate they cannot live up to now?!

    Yep, eliminate the Alcohol and Mental Departments and allow society to become worse than it already is! Having lunch I was listening to three individuals that depended on Mental Health for drugs, no face-to-face therapy, but drugs to cure the symptoms they have! An already failing program(s) getting less? Really, our representatives need to get off their asses and walk around the cities they represent, not only to success, but to areas for experiencing the issues they are not seeing or listening to ither tall them about!