Right now we’re feeling like Chicken Little when the sky actually did fall, or like the boy who cried wolf when the wolves really came. After years of it being cut or threatened to be cut and then restored, our grant funding for the State of Illinois is now officially eliminated. This amounts to around $148,000/year and critical services for people with developmental disabilities in Streator.
Twenty-four of these people will be eligible to go on the waiting list for funding through the Medicaid Waiver. Unfortunately, the list is 20,000 people long and very few ever come off it. The others will no longer be eligible for funding through the Division of Developmental Disabilities.
We grieve this loss. It will lessen quality of life. It will result in some people no longer earning money and being taxpayers and in good health and not needing much medical care to people who may be more of a drain on the system, costing more money than is saved in the long run.
That said, Illinois is in a financial crisis and must spend their funds on what they feel (what we tell them) is most important. We tried to let them know how important these services are, but we were to few people and too small a voice.