State Budget Action Alert: Where’s Our Pumpkin Pie?

Below is a note from Access Living’s Director of Advocacy. The note highlights a Letter Writing Campaign from the Illinois Network of Centers for Independent Living targets Governor Rauner and State Legislators for their failure to pass a budget and support Centers for Independent Living.

Dear Access Living friends and allies,

The Illinois Network of Centers for Independent Living (INCIL) is calling for a letter writing campaign to our Governor and state legislative leaders, effective immediately. Due to the state budget crisis, the Centers have been waiting for over $4 million in funding this year, and if that funding is not secured by May 31, the future of at least some Centers will be uncertain.

You can help us by taking quick action at this link . The theme of the letter writing campaign is “Where’s Our Pumpkin Pie?” Believe it or not, last year our state legislators passed a law to make the pumpkin pie our state pie. That’s nice for those who can afford to eat pie…and the Centers certainly cannot.

While online letters will be sent to Governor Rauner, Speaker Madigan, President Cullerton, Senate Minority Leader Radogno and House Minority Leader Durkin, Centers will also be mobilizing to send hard copy letters from across the state. As part of INCIL, Access Living will be doing the same. INCIL will be tallying hard copy letters in addition to online letters.

Without this state funding, you may ask, what is the impact? Well, did you know that lack of state funding is preventing some Centers from moving people with disabilities out of nursing homes and into the community? Did you know that Centers have laid off advocacy and independent living support staff? Many of the people laid off from Centers are themselves people with disabilities.

The fault lies squarely at the feet of our state legislators and Governor. We need funding for the Centers, and for human services generally, NOW. Again, you can take action at this link .

Let’s go Illinois!