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Families, Consumers of Home Care Impacted by Budget Cuts to Hold Noon Vigil Outside Fresno Board of Supervisors Meeting as Clock Ticks Down to July 1st Deadline
Date:6/9/2009

FRESNO, Calif., June 9 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --Representatives and supporters, including SEIU UHW, of the more than 12,000 families who rely on In-Home Support Services to care for elderly or disabled loved ones will hold a vigil on Tuesday at noon outside of the Fresno Board of Supervisors meeting as the clock ticks down to the July 1st deadline for dangerous home care cuts to go into effect. Clients and family members fear that the lower wages will force workers to find new jobs forcing their loved ones into institutions.

Carlos Martinez whose 29-year-old wife is recovering from a diabetic coma, said in court filings, "I am very concerned that I will be unable to replace my wife's IHSS providers if they quit. I do not know how I would provide the care that she needs in order to remain at home if I could not find IHSS providers for all of my wife's authorized hours. I am very worried about the possibility that I might have to put my wife in some kind of institutional care if I could not replace her IHSS providers."

In Sacramento County, unlike Fresno, officials chose to work with the union to offset losses in local revenue with federal stimulus funds to assure no loss of pay for home care workers. SEIU UHW and Sacramento County reached an agreement in May to sustain current wages and healthcare benefits.

Last week SEIU filed for a emergency injunction to stop the cuts from going into effect on July 1st. The lawsuit was brought on behalf of individual consumers and SEIU, and argues that the planned cuts put seniors and people with disabilities at risk and violate the American with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act, and federal Medicaid Law.

WHO: Consumer, clients and family members of the elderly and disabled

WHERE: Fresno County Hall of Records, 2281 Tulare, Fresno

WHEN: Tuesday, June 9 at NOON

VISUALS:
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SOURCE SEIU UHW
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