Support SB 955 and HB 2960 To Raise DSP Wages

Apr 12, 2017 by

People with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) that rely on direct support staff (DSP’s) in community settings across Illinois are suffering due to the critical workforce crisis agencies are facing as a result of low wages.  The Institute on Public Policy for People with Disabilities is a leader in the statewide coalition of organizations working to pass House Bill 2960 and Senate Bill 955 in the Illinois General Assembly to increase wages for DSP’s to $15/hour.  Similar versions of these bills were passed by the General Assembly last Spring, but were ultimately vetoed by the Governor.

Stakeholders and supporters need to send a strong message to legislative representatives and the Governor that people with disabilities deserve to have a stable and committed workforce.  The workforce coalition has outlined a number of actions that agency staff, families, people receiving services and other supporters must take to send the message to our elected officials in Springfield that they cannot continue to ignore the crisis that is taking place across Illinois that is affecting the lives of tens of thousands of people in community settings.

Please take one or more of the steps below and encourage others you know that are concerned about the wellbeing of people with disabilities and the importance of community agencies to do so as well.

  1. Legislative Visits:  Meet directly with your local legislators and share how important DSP’s are for you, your family member and your agency.  Legislators pay close attention to issues that are important to their constituents; make sure they know that people with disabilities and the DSP’s who support them are important to you.
  2. Post Card Campaign: Agencies are encouraged to use the link below to print post cards for everyone associated with their organization to send to Governor Rauner with a personal message about the importance of DSP’s in the lives of people with disabilities
  3. Phone Calls and Emails:  The AFSCME DSP Legislative Hotline is available to connect any caller to his/her State Senator and Representative to ask for support for the DSP wage bills.  1-844-259-0916 (Note – this number connects you directly with your Representative and Senator and does not affiliate you with AFSCME).
  4. Social Media:  Use your social media accounts to let others know this issue is important to you, your family and organization and ask them to take the above steps to support people with disabilities.

DSP Postcard

The Institute will continue to inform members on activities related to the DSP workforce coalition efforts.

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