Adult day-care program also protected from cuts by federal judge
March 7, 2010 (Washington D.C.) – The U.S. Justice Department filed an amicus brief Tuesday in the U.S. Court of Appeal supporting a lawsuit to block Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s plan to slash in-home care to 130,000 seniors and disabled people in California.
The Obama administration, in the brief, argued that the cuts would violate the Americans with Disabilities Act which “prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in the provision of public services.”
The cuts to the In-Home Supportive Services Program were intended to save the cash-strapped state $82.1 million this fiscal-year.
The federal brief supports a lawsuit filed by Disabled Rights California, the National Senior Citizens Law Center, and other organizations. An injunction in a lower federal court has temporarily halted the state from making the cuts pending outcome of the litigation.
In late February, a federal judge also blocked California from making cuts to another program targeting the elderly and mentally disabled. U.S. District Judge Saundra Brown Armstrong in Oakland halted the state from removing thousands of low-income people, mostly elderly or mentally infirm, from a program that provides them with daytime care and supervision in local centers.
Schwarzenegger had proposed to eliminate the program entirely in his 2010-2011 budget. But Armstrong said the plan would violate federal laws. Such cuts would result in institutionalization of numerous people, she found, adding that the state’s actions would come down hardest on people with mental impairments.