I wanted to share briefly with you the great news that the Judge over seeing the Ligas Consent Decree has found the state out of compliance with the decree. Here is the Judge’s order granting the motion to enforce the consent decree and the statement by the Plaintiff’s Counsel.
The Judge ruled Friday that Illinois was not providing sufficient resources for the care of developmentally disabled residents and ordered the state to come up with a plan to restore services.
U.S. District Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman said Illinois, which just ended an unprecedented budget impasse, failed to provide “resources of sufficient quality, scope, and variety” to the residents, who as a result “suffered substantially” from a reduction in services in violation of a federal consent decree.
In the ruling, Johnson said she lacked the authority to order a funding increase, noted the state’s “dire financial condition,” and directed Illinois to devise a plan to address issues affecting the services and comply with the decree.
Congratulations to Equip for Equality and many others for speaking up for the issue of the lack of investment by IL in community based services and supports for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Although there is no immediate requirement for increased funding for current or new services, this order requires a plan to be draw up to address lack of investment in services. Any increased pressure on the state by the court is a good thing in our collective advocacy efforts for more support, funding and access to home and community based services.
The Arc of Illinois
20901 S. LaGrange Rd. Suite 209
Frankfort, IL 60423