Raleigh, NC: Disability Rights North Carolina applauds Governor Beverly Perdue for stabilizing the housing of 1,400 group home residents with disabilities. Today Governor Perdue announced she would use authority granted in the state budget to spend $1 million to provide a housing subsidy to those residents who no longer qualify for Personal Care Supports, a service provided under Medicaid. “This is a relief for the many who were facing the frightening prospect of losing their homes,” said Vicki Smith, Executive Director.
Changes to Personal Care Supports eligibility, enacted by the NC General Assembly this summer and effective January 1, 2013, will make thousands of people who previously received the service ineligible. For those who live in large Adult Care Homes, the General Assembly provided a fund to replace that money in the first half of 2013. No such funds were appropriated to support those living in smaller group homes, leaving residents vulnerable if the operators of their homes decide to discharge the resident or close the facility.
Governor Perdue’s action is only a bridge until the NC General Assembly reconvenes in January. According to Secretary of Health and Human Services Al Delia, the $1 million payments will stabilize funding for group homes serving adults with mental illness or developmental disabilities through the end of January. “We are still counting on the General Assembly to act quickly once they return,” said Smith.