Newly elected Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner announced his budget earlier this month and it contains some cuts that could severely impact those who rely on disability benefits.
Rauner’s budget includes $1.5 billion cut to Medicaid’s Health and Family Services program. This would mean the elimination of specialized mental health rehabilitation facilities, according to The Chicago Sun-Times.
Cuts in Rauner’s budget would also slice $27.5 million from the division of alcohol and substance abuse, $82 million from the division of mental health and $23 million from the Early Intervention Program. Projects which help those in need, including Project Autism and homeless youth services, will also be eliminated under this new budget.
Adding to all of this is a $19 million reduction from the public health budget. All of these services mentioned have potential to touch the lives of those who suffer from mental or physical health troubles.
Most people would agree that the state of Illinois must attempt to reduce its budget. However, attacking programs that support mental and physical health could be false economy.
If an individual remains medically untreated and ill they cannot be productive in the workforce. Additionally, chronic illness is very expensive for all taxpayers. While reductions in these programs may seem to be a financial solution, it is not only inhumane, but not cost effective over time.
The Law Offices of Harold W. Conick & Associates, Ltd. is committed to assisting the disabled in pursuit of government benefits to which they are entitled.