Advocates for Developmentally Disabled Protest Budget Deal
On Wednesday, advocates criticized California's recently announced budget deal for omitting money to increase provider rates for those who care for individuals with developmental disabilities, Capital Public Radio's "KXJZ News" reports (Orr, "KXJZ News," Capital Public Radio, 6/17).
A budget plan proposed by the California Legislature originally included a hike in provider payment rates for community-based services for Californians with developmental disabilities (Gorn, California Healthline, 6/12). However, the $100 million proposal was left out of the budget deal announced on Tuesday, "KXJZ News" reports ("KXJZ News," Capital Public Radio, 6/17).
State lawmakers likely will vote on the budget deal on Friday, and both the state Senate and Assembly are expected to approve the plan.
Brown also announced that he will schedule two special legislative sessions to address additional funding concerns related to the budget (California Healthline, 6/17)
Details of Protest
On Wednesday, advocates protested outside the state Capitol calling for funding to raise caregivers' pay.
According to "KXJZ News," those who provide community-based services for individuals with developmental disabilities have not seen a rate increase in about 15 years.
Jacquie Dillard-Foss, a provider who works with individuals with developmental disabilities and led the protest, said that "to hear there was a deal made without us ... we're done."
Rate Increases Could Be Discussed in Special Session
According to "KXJZ News," Brown has said that rate increases for providers who care for individuals with developmental disabilities should be considered during one of the special legislative sessions.
State Sen. Jim Beall (D-San Jose), who has proposed a 10% rate increase for such providers, said, "We need to do something quickly in the special session to get some increase, because at this point, many of these group homes just can't afford to continue to operate."
Meanwhile, Assembly member Tony Thurmond (D-Richmond) said a special legislative session is "a great position for the advocates to place their concerns."
According to "KXJZ News," leaders of the state Senate and Assembly have said they will use the special session to try to pass a rate increase ("KXJZ News," Capital Public Radio, 6/17).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.