The state denies allegations that it’s harming developmentally disabled individuals by rushing them out of a state institution in Jacksonville.
Since Governor Pat Quinn proposed shutting down the Jacksonville Developmental Center, AFSCME has been fighting it.
Not only will members lose jobs, but the state’s largest public employee union says the Department of Human Services has been moving people in haste.
In a letter, AFSCME charges a woman was moved from Jacksonville into an apartment to be cared for by a community provider with a “spotty” record. The letter says with only one person caring for her, the woman fell out of her wheelchair lift and had to have surgery.
In a statement, the Department of Human Services calls the allegations “absurd and misleading.”
A spokeswoman says the transition of Jacksonville residents has been careful and deliberate.
She wouldn’t say how many residents have been moved out of the facility.
The budget legislators approved provides funding to keep Jacksonville open. But Quinn gets to have the final say:
QUINN “I am not sympathetic to the institutional approach. I think many states have seen that community care, independent living, is a much better way to go and I’m committed to that.”