* Via the twitters…
Hey, what’s this about? Replacing parents? Huh?
* Read on…
Deborah Teixeira is in danger of literally being fired by the state of Illinois from her job as Juliet’s mother. The Peoria resident has been warned that if there are more infractions, the state will send a replacement into her home to take care of her daughter instead.
Teixeira is not alone. Across the state, mothers like her and other people taking care of their family members have been told via threatening official phone calls and letters that they could be replaced if they don’t shape up.
Her predicament comes from the fact that she takes care of an adult daughter with brain damage. She provides Juliet with round-the-clock care at her home thanks to subsidies from Illinois’ Home Services Program.
That’s common: Most of HSP’s estimated 20,000 “caregivers” are just people like Teixeira watching over severely disabled family members.
The program also comes with strings attached, including a new billing system that requires caregivers to call a phone number twice daily to literally clock in and clock out.
Forget to clock out and you are technically overbilling the state. Repeat offenders can be replaced as caregiver — even if they are taking care of their own children in their home.
In other words, she’s getting money from the government so she can take care of her child, and she’s complaining that she has to clock in and out every day. Previously, caregivers just filled out timesheets. But that can be done retroactively, so this is more “real time,” and there was apparently some training involved.
* And what about those “threatening” letters? One was posted online…
As a Customer of the Home Services Program (HSP), it is your responsibility to manage your individual Provider(s) so you do not go over the number of hours that are authorized on your HSP Service Plan.
Your current Service Plan authorizes [redacted] hours of services per month. However, our records indicate that you have approved [redacted] hours in May 2014.
If, within the next six months. you continue to approve hours that are over the number authorized on your Service Plan without prior approval from your HSP Counselor, the Division of Rehabilitation Services will have to amend your Service Plan to remove your Individual Provider(s) and replace them with a Homemaker Agency. If this occurs, your Counselor will contact you to provide you with the amended Service Plan and notify you of your right to request an appeal.
If you are having difficulty managing your Individual Provider(s), please feel free to contact your Counselor or your local Center for Independent Living (CIL) for assistance.
If you would like to change to a Homemaker Agency. please contact your Counselor to make that change is in your Service Plan. Thank you for your cooperation in this matter. If you have any questions, please contact your HSP Counselor or Coordinator.
Home Services Program
I don’t see a “threatening” tone there. At all.
* So, what’s this really about?…
It is the latest example of how the state bureaucracy has created headaches for the caregivers. The [Home Services Program] is also the center of a major Supreme Court case, Harris v. Quinn, set to be decided this month. It involves whether the state can force the caregivers to join a union.
OK, now I get it.