Focus turns to long-term solutions to save lives, save money
Sacramento, CA – The Healthy at Home Coalition released the following statement regarding the budget approved by both houses of the legislature today. The budget rejects most of the cuts to IHSS proposed by the Governor, including a 7% across-the-board cut to home care hours as well as the elimination of domestic and related services for recipients who need support to live at home rather than in an institutional setting. The current 3.6% cut passed and signed into law last year will be continued for one more year in the new budget.
“Protecting and strengthening the home care that 400,000 seniors, people with disabilities and care givers count on for their safety and independence has been our goal since Day One of the ‘Let’s get Healthy at Home!’ campaign.
“The budget passed by the Legislature is balanced this year and eliminates the long-term structural deficit. After years of painful cuts, protecting the cost-saving IHSS program is again being recognized as a budget solution.
“From across California, we came to the Capitol over the last two weeks to tell the story of home care: Home care saves lives and saves money. Still, with the IHSS-eligible population expected to double to 800,000 seniors and people with disabilities over the next decade, the budget passed today is a solution for today, and we must turn our attention to tomorrow.
“The Healthy at Home Coalition will immediately re-double our efforts to pass the coordinated care initiative that will improve health outcomes for California’s most vulnerable population and realize long-term budget savings. Further, we urge the Governor to work with us on a long-term solution to millions of dollars in IHSS cuts currently tied up in the courts.
“Our loved ones deserve better than the fear that comes every year when IHSS is on the chopping block. Only by passing the coordinated care initiative and reaching an agreement on cuts currently in litigation can the Governor and Legislature say they have strengthened and secured home care for the 400,000 California seniors and people with disabilities depend upon.”
The Healthy at Home Coalition consists of SEIU United Long Term Care Workers, SEIU United Healthcare Workers West, SEIU Local 521, UDW Homecare Providers Union/AFSCME Local 3930, and California United Health Care Workers SEIU/AFSCME Local 4034.