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Federal Judge Orders Schwarzenegger Administration to Comply with Order That Blocks State Reduction for IHSS Worker Wages
Date:7/14/2009

State must comply - NOT DEFY - by close of business today!

OAKLAND, Calif., July 14 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In a ruling issued late yesterday afternoon, Judge Wilken of the U.S. District Court ordered California to comply with her June 25, 2009, ruling which halts the State's plans to cut In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) wages.

"The judge's ruling sends a clear message to the Governor that you can't ignore the law, no matter who you are," said Dave Regan, SEIU Executive Vice President and Trustee of SEIU-UHW. "We are satisfied that the judge is holding the State accountable and forcing it to take the action that it should have taken immediately after the initial ruling."

Based on the original lawsuit filed by Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and IHSS consumers and providers, Judge Wilken ruled that the $2 per hour reduction in the State's maximum contribution toward IHSS wages, which was scheduled to take place on July 1, violated the federal Medicaid statute. She enjoined the State from implementing the state budget law requiring the reduction.

However, the State defied the order by refusing to rescind the reduced pay rates put in place solely because of the reduced State contribution. As a result, plaintiffs filed a contempt motion on July 7, requesting that the Court either issue a more detailed ruling or force the State to pay a daily fine of $500,000.

On July 13, 2009, Judge Wilken amended her original injunction to make it more specific by requiring the State to rescind approval of all IHSS wage reductions by July 14 that were scheduled to take place on July 1. IHSS providers who would have been impacted by the reduction in wages include providers from the following counties: Alameda, Calaveras, Contra Costa, Mendocino, Napa, San Benito, San Mateo, Santa Barbara, Solano, and Yolo.

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SOURCE SEIU UHW
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