Thank you to everyone who has written, called, or emailed as we continue our fight for an 8% increase across all services. Your efforts have produced results.
Our request for an 8% increase in the rates for all services is included in the Senate's Budget proposals. Unfortunately the Assembly and the Governor have proposed far less.
At last week's Budget Conference Committee meeting, several members of the committee expressed support for the 8% increase. The Governor has requested final recommendations from the Budget Conference Committee this week.
Act TODAY to Help Save Services for Individuals with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities
We need your help! Here's what you can do right now for Villa and other nonprofits who provide services for individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities in California:
Call or email the top three leaders
The message is very straightforward: Give your name, tell them you are calling to support the SENATE's recommendation for 8% across the board increases for services for people with developmental disabilities. Tell them if you are a person with a disability, a family member, friend or someone who works to support people with developmental disabilities. Tell them this increase is desperately needed this year.
Governor Gavin Newsom
Phone: (916) 445-2841 | Fax: (916) 558-3160
Speaker of the Assembly: Anthony Rendon
Tel: (916) 319-2063 | Fax: (916) 319-2163
Chair of the Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Committee: Holly Mitchell
Tel: (916) 651-4030 | Fax: (916) 651-4930
Why Is This Important?
Once again, California service providers for individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities (I/DD) are facing a crisis. More than 330,000 Californians with I/DD live in our state; they are our neighbors, classmates, coworkers, family, and friends. However, their support structure has been grossly underfunded and is failing. Reimbursement rates have not increased in 20 years.
Direct support staff are quitting the field or working multiple jobs due to low wages, essential programs are closing throughout the state, and individuals with I/DD are forced to live with inadequate supports or without supports at all.
These vital services are in jeopardy due to the severe financial constraints under which Villa and other service providers are forced to operate. California’s lawmakers must fund the services and supports that people with I/DD rely on to access their civil rights. An 8% rate increase will provide the emergency stabilization that our community desperately needs.
Additionally, for the first time in 25 years, the State has hired consultants to take a hard look at how much the State should support critical services for individuals with I/DD. A draft of the Rate Study as mandated by ABX2-1 was published on March 15th by the Department of Developmental Services. It is critical that all stakeholders have an opportunity to fully vet all key assumptions in this study. We must discuss where and how these assumptions will lead to unintended, negative, and potentially disastrous consequences and then, agree on how we can work together to modify these key assumptions.
Support and Articles to Share
We are grateful to local legislators Chris Holden, Henry Stern and Adrin Nazarian for all of their support and assistance. Assemblymember Chris Holden has written to Legislative leaders urging them to do the right thing this year. He has urged them to adopt the Senate's funding proposals and to see them signed into law. Click here to read Assemblymember Holden's letter.
Additionally, he and Senator Stern both wrote opinion pieces on why they support the 8% increase:
Congressman Holden's Opinion Piece in the Pasadena Star News
Senator Stern's Editorial in the Los Angeles Daily News
Villa has a desire to advocate for and protect those that cannot speak for themselves in the intellectual/developmental disabilities (I/DD) community. As part of a coalition of 16 Southern California non-profits dedicated to increasing awareness and educating both local and state legislators, friends and families on the importance of continued funding, Villa works tirelessly with these and other local service providers to make our voice heard. We have been extremely active in our advocacy efforts - we contact legislators through emails, phone calls, faxes, and handwritten letters; we arrange meetings with legislators locally and in Sacramento; and we attend hearings and rallies in Sacramento. Villa's goal is to help protect services for children and adults with intellecual/developmental disabilites including autism, Down syndrome and cerebral palsy.
As issues which affect our community come to light, we often request specific support from our base to help us with email or letter writing campaigns.
If you would like more information on how to become an advocate in your community, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
. To stay up to date with Villa's advocacy efforts, please join our email list
and check out our Facebook page.
Villa's CEO, Kelly White, and previous Villa family member, Margaret Morris, march in a Lanterman Coalition Rally.