Trinity Services’ Statement
The Chicago Tribune is publishing a series of three articles that describe the problems and weaknesses of the Illinois intellectual/developmental disabilities community service system.
In doing so, Tribune reporters have included stories of persons who passed away while receiving services from community-based organizations including Trinity Services.
Our mission is to assist individuals to live their best life possible. Every day, we see the positive impact we make on the lives of the people we serve. We are truly saddened by the death of anyone who passes away in our care.
Trinity Services has been supporting children and adults disabilities for more than 66 years from a foundation of compassion, competence and community. We believe we are doing a good job and that in fact, the State of Illinois relies on Trinity and several other providers to serve people with very complex medical or behavioral needs. Throughout the years, we have served thousands of people and have saved the lives of many.
While it is a reality that bad things do happen in good organizations, we do believe that there are changes that could strengthen the current disability system in Illinois.
For at least eight years, Trinity staff have suggested and proposed that there be specialized group homes within the community-integrated living arrangement model that would more properly accommodate and support people with exceptional needs. Those people associated with Trinity who are included in these articles, along with many of the other individuals named, would have benefited from such settings.
It is very difficult to provide services in Illinois today. In fact, the system today stands on the precipice of collapse. Providers have not had a rate increase in 8 ½ years; organizations cannot recruit sufficient numbers of staff because of the low wages; and direct support staff are becoming exhausted because of the overtime demands on their lives. The direct support professional workforce crisis is so great that Illinois is in violation of a federal consent decree stating that Illinois must ensure access to appropriate services for those in need. Needed homes are not being developed today because of the staff shortage. It is our hope that these articles will be the catalyst for the changes that need to be made in Illinois.
We would be glad to answer any questions that anyone may have with respect to the services Trinity provides or the unique needs faced by the highly vulnerable people we serve.
Thanks to those of you who have expressed such kind words of encouragement.
The Arc of Illinois
20901 S. LaGrange Rd. Suite 209
Frankfort, IL 60423