Federal Court Monitor ruling: "Illinois not in Compliance"
Illinois has "failed to provide the funding necessary to provide
adequate services to individuals with intellectual and
Ronnie Cohn, Federal Monitor for the Ligas Consent Decree, made
this ruling in her annual report to the Court. The Ligas
lawsuit, settled in 2011, requires Illinois to provide the
resources and funding needed to support smaller, community-based
residential services. Over the six years covered by the
decree, Illinois must provide sufficient alternatives to its
outdated model of large Intermediate Care Facility (type of
nursing home) services.
In a finding directly related to the
workforce crisis, Cohn
writes that "until such time as concrete steps are taken to
enact a state budget and address the staffing crisis and
resulting decrease in service quality as well as lack of
development in the community, the monitor finds noncompliance".
Illinois is required to pass a budget that has the funding
needed to develop and maintain the community services required
by the decree. Twenty years of underfunding, the growing
workforce crisis and
current budget impasse have come together to create a perfect
storm that threatens to permanently undermine the more than 60
years of progress made by individuals with autism, cerebral
palsy, Down Syndrome and other intellectual, physical and
developmental disabilities in Illinois.
The state must now respond to Court Monitor Cohn's findings.
Should Illinois fail to achieve compliance, the case will be
returned to Federal judge Sharon Johnson Coleman, who could find
the state in contempt of the original order and force the state
Equip and ACLU Federal Complaint
Advocates as federal judge to order more state resources
developmentally disabled care
Capitol Fax 4-10-2017
1-20-2017 Monitor's Report
1-7-2016 Monitor's Report
Equality-Ligas Fact Sheet
June 15, 2011 Ligas Press Release