DOJ Files Brief in Support of Suit Challenging In-Home Care Cuts
Last week, attorneys from the U.S. Department of Justice's civil rights division filed an amicus brief in the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in support of a lawsuit challenging California's plan to cut spending for its In-Home Support Services program, the Sacramento Bee's "Capitol Alert" reports.
In-home care services receive funding from state, federal and local governments, along with some contributions from care recipients.
Last year, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) and state lawmakers approved a plan to reduce subsidized care for 130,000 elderly and disabled IHSS beneficiaries.
The cuts aimed to reduce state spending by $82.1 million this fiscal year by decreasing services for certain individuals based on an index measuring their mental and physical capabilities.
Disability Rights California, the National Senior Citizens Law Center and other advocacy groups filed a lawsuit challenging the cuts.Â The plaintiffs argued that the index system would end services for some IHSS beneficiaries and could drive some participants into institutionalized care.
A lower federal court issued an injunction preventing the cuts from taking effect pending the outcome of the lawsuit.
DOJ Brief Details
In its amicus brief, the DOJ attorneys write that the U.S. "has a direct and substantial interest in this appeal, which involves the proper interpretation and application of Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act."They add that ADA "prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in the provision of public services" (Ferriss, "Capitol Alert," Sacramento Bee, 3/5). 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.