March 19, 2013 (Sacramento) – California Department of Social Services (CDSS) Director Will Lightbourne and California Department of Health Care Services Director Toby Douglas have announced an agreement with In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) beneficiaries and labor organizations to resolve several class action lawsuits involving the IHSS Program. The agreement resolves the dispute between the State and plaintiffs in the Oster v. Lightbourne and Dominguez v. Schwarzenegger lawsuits.
“This is an example of all sides coming together for the good of the people we serve,” said CDSS Director Will Lightbourne.
He added, “This agreement captures budgeted savings, eliminates the cost, risk and uncertainty of litigation and creates stability and certainty to allow this vulnerable population to remain active in the communities in which they live.”
The agreement would end multiple legal challenges to the IHSS program changes enacted in 2009 and subsequent years. As part of the settlement, the IHSS program, commencing July 1, 2013, would continue to incur a 3.6 percent reduction of services with an additional 4.4 percent reduction, for a total of 8 percent.
"Today’s agreement represents a significant compromise for all sides and preserves access to this important benefit," said DHCS Director Toby Douglas.
The IHSS Program helps pay for services provided to low income individuals over 65 years of age, or disabled or blind so they can remain safely in their homes. The types of services which can be authorized through IHSS are housecleaning, meal preparation, laundry, grocery shopping, personal care services, accompaniment to medical appointments, and protective supervision for the mentally impaired.