Activists say that the state’s assistance centers serving people with disabilities have not provided enough support since the pandemic forced programs to shut down.
Over 300,000 Californians with intellectual and developmental disabilities depend on regional centers that connect them to day care, home health aides and other services. Those state-funded programs are temporarily closed. But the state is legally obligated to continue services — and has told the providers they contract with to get in touch with their clients remotely.
But a new survey by the nonprofit Disability Voices United finds that nearly half of respondents haven't heard back from their providers. And the group's president, Judy Mark, says many who did are being told the providers don't have enough staff to deliver services like child care and home aides.
"One of our concerns is that some of these programs are checking in once a week with an individual and still billing [them]. And we think that they need to step up and do more," Mark told KQED.
Gov. Gavin Newsom's new proposed budget would cut $544 million dollars in funding to programs for Californians with disabilities.
— Shannon Lin