Rauner’s cuts would lead to more seniors in nursing homes (VIDEO)

Nearly 40,000 seniors striving to stay in their homes will be left without care as part of a slew of cuts announced by Governor Rauner yesterday.

The Community Care Program, providing basic care to over 100,000 seniors throughout Illinois, would be drastically scaled back, leaving many without care and, in many cases, forcing them out of their homes.

“All we need is a helping hand. We aren’t asking someone to be here 24/7,” said Ray Miller, a low-income senior who receives help from Community Care.

Like many seniors in the program, Ray has a caretaker whom he sees once a week to help him maintain his independence in his own home. Without this help, Ray knows he would have to move to a nursing home – something that would cost him his independence and the state more money.

“I’m too crippled to work, and all I need is a little help to maintain a reasonable quality of life,” Miller said. “Don’t we, as citizens who have paid taxes all of our lives, deserve to be treated better? Apparently, our new governor thinks we are just a burden.”

Read more about Ray’s story on the Chicago Sun-Times and Chicago Tribune:

‘Most vulnerable citizens’ affected by state cuts, advocates say (Chicago Sun-Times):

…About 39,000 people will be affected by the cuts, the AARP said.

Rogers Park resident Ray Miller, 68, has back and joint issues and needs a helper to keep his life in order and keep him independent.

An aide cleans his apartment and helps him with necessary tasks once a week — but that service might be at risk with the cuts.

Rauner to aides: Jobs about to become ‘even harder’ amid standoff (Chicago Tribune):

…Under the changes put forth by Rauner, the minimum so-called "determination of need" score to qualify for assistance would increase from 29 to 37. That score takes into account a number of factors to establish how well a person can live on his or her own.

Fewer people will qualify, including 68-year-old Ray Miller, a retired truck driver who lives in Rogers Park. Once a week, a caretaker helps him cook, clean and do laundry. Without that assistance, he said he'd likely be forced into a nursing home, which he called a "death sentence." His need score is 29, which would not qualify him for the program under the new guidelines.

"I just feel I am being discarded," Miller said Wednesday. "Right now, I am independent enough to maintain my self-worth; if they make me go to a nursing home, I just feel a lot of people, myself included, would just give up."

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