Happy October, National Disability Employment Awareness Month! Work/Employment is a major part of what we do at SU. We have work on-site for our consumers in our workshop, from the powde ...Read More
Our garden is planted and things are coming along. Some of us were out today seeing how things were going and enjoying some fresh air (until we went in for air conditioning). &nbs ...Read More
On April 26, a big crew of employees from Exelon volunteered their time at the new house on Illinois Street. They tore out the bathrooms, walls, floor covering, drop ceiling, capped all th ...Read More
Senator Rezin sent by a certificate of the IL Senate Recognition of SU's 50th Anniversary. Thank you for thinking of us in the midst of a very busy session, Senator! Our party turned ou ...Read More
SU was mentioned in a state budget article. They mention the DON score. That doesn’t not have a direct impact on SU’s funding from the state. It does impact some of the people who live on their own or with family who receive services through the Division of Rehabilitation Services Home Services Program though. Still, we find this uncharted state budget territory to be nerve-wracking, even if we are getting paid for our services through court orders.
Happy October, National Disability Employment Awareness Month! Work/Employment is a major part of what we do at SU. We have work on-site for our consumers in our workshop, from the powder coat paint line to washing totes to packaging and dip tubes. We support people off-site, at the LaSalle State Police Headquarters and US Foods. Consumers work in the community in a variety of Streator businesses. Take a look at our at our SUCCESS page and see what we can do for you!
Heading into autumn with a variety of activities:
Check out our new page featuring facts from our 50th Anniversary.
We’re incredibly fortunate to have such strong support from our community through individual donations, support of businesses and clubs, the LaSalle County Mental Health Board funded by your tax dollars, grants we’re able to obtain and the Streator Area United Way. It all makes a big difference in what we’re able to do!
The annual State of the States Report is ready. If you look at the state scorecard link, Illinois sadly remains near the bottom at 47. There doesn’t appear to be any discussion in Springfield about how to get our rating to a place that reflects the great state we are.
A great article on the interaction of learning/developmental disabilities and the criminal justice system. We at SU have supported people though such issues. We can have an incredible impact on a person’s life by helping them stay out of jail or prison and become independent, self-supporting tax-payers. If you’re a state faced with difficult funding decisions based on lack of resources, this makes financial sense. The cost of monitoring, prosecuting and incarcerating a person is a lot higher than collecting taxes from that same person if they get the supports to be successful. When you under-fund a community system, you end up spending more on the last-resort options like institutions for people with disabilities or prisons.
And this doesn’t begin to touch the issues on the mental health side of this.
A nice article in the Chicago Tribune (summary here not blocked by a paywall). SU is fortunate that the state has notified us that we will eventually get paid for the services provided as of July 1, though there is no guarantee of the rate we will be paid or when the money will arrive. We have plans in place to ride out the budget stalemate in Springfield, at least for a couple of months. The lack of increases (and cuts as well) over the years are catching up with us now though…we’re hitting our limits in terms of keeping up with rising costs like insurance and other bills as well as paying our employees a decent wage.
SU is just one of the agencies that has signed this letter. We start our new fiscal years on July 1, and it really is difficult to set a budget without knowing what our state funding will be. Fortunately for SU, the state has notified us that we will receive funding in our coming year. We don’t know for sure that our rates won’t be cut though. We’ll also have difficulty if they pass a minimum wage increase but don’t give us additional funding to cover it. So, for now, we’re cutting back on our spending and reducing outings for our residents, and holding off on filling positions that go empty.
The major challenge is that we won’t receive any payments from the state until they pass a budget. That’s scary! We do have a line of credit we can draw on if our bank accounts empty out. We certainly hope it doesn’t come to that.
We also empathize with agencies whose funding is not guaranteed by the state beginning July 1. If they keep providing services, they don’t know of they’ll get paid for them until a state budget is passed! Some can’t afford to do that. Hopefully this budget will be completed very soon.
We added the 2015 state survey of our day and residential programs to our Documents and Reports page. We were pleased to have scores of 97% and 99%. These are unannounced surveys. The day program is surveyed every year while the residential program is surveyed every 3 years. We live the rules and do our best every day so don’t mind them being unannounced, other than carving the time out of our day to help the surveyor with documentation, inspections, etc. The surveys look at a wide variety of things, from interviews with consumers and employees and guardians, personnel records, governance, service plans, Safety and Human Rights and Behavioral Intervention Committee minutes, policies and beyond.