April 4, 2018
In the Day at the Capitol blog post, there is a proposed email for you to send to Governor Dayton and your legislators, to stave off a 7% cut in disability funding. After last year’s successful session, you may ask how did it come to the pass that disability services would be facing such a drastic cut? Especially in a year where the state surplus is $329 million! Especially when more than 90,000 Minnesotans receive disability services and more than 90,0000 Minnesotans provide those services.
Turns out part of the state surplus is phony – it was calculated under suspicious circumstances with money being squeezed from vulnerable individuals receiving disability services. As the proposed email explains, MN’s Disability Waiver Rate system (DWRS) was at best poorly explained to federal authorities, who decided that MN’s past rate increases from 2013, 2014 and 2015 should not be applied to rates in the same year as the DWRS inflator. This cut equals 7% and applies to all individuals receiving Home and Community Based Services under the DWRS. Should this cut stand, it will initially cost HBI approximately $50,000 but eventually losses will reach $500,000 as all of its individuals on HCBS come onto the new system. The cut will be catastrophic to the organization, especially during the workforce crisis. It is approximately $1 an hour for all of DSP staff!
Be Our Champion
This is a totally unnecessary action. In my entire career, I have never witnessed a more callous proposal. Hubert Humphrey said that the way to judge a society was by how it treated vulnerable individuals.
It is now up to our champions in the legislature, on both sides of the aisle, to save us. Please read the proposed email carefully. Cut and paste it into your email, change it to better tell your story around your job or around the services your relative provides. If you can call and leave a message, that would help lots! We must stop this cut by defeating those behind it and we must stop it definitively!