Diverse Coalition Holds ‘Day of Action’ to Restore Over $200 Mil Cuts by Governor Affecting Most Vulnerable in Illinois

CHICAGO, IL – A diverse coalition of faith and organization leaders representing The Alliance For Budget Equity (ABE) is holding a “Day of Action” protest rally, 10 a.m., Monday, May 4, 2015, at the James R. Thompson Center, 100 West Randolph Chicago, to urge Gov. Bruce Rauner to restore $205 million in budget cuts.

While giving a $100 million corporate tax break to the 1 percent like eBay, CapitalOne, CDW and SAC Wireless, “Gov. Rauner has cut the lifeline to our community and faith based programs which are vital to our children, seniors and the most vulnerable Illinoisans.”

Rauner has slashed $18 million from the Chicago Coalition of the Homeless affecting 12,500 people, a 55 percent cut for homeless youth services impacting 1,326 youth, a cut of $ 1 million for homeless prevention, slashed $14.1 million for supportive housing (disabled people), eliminated funds to educate homeless students who number more than 59,112 as of FY09, $1 million for children suffering from autism, $3.1 million from the Teen REACH program, $94,000 from the Westside Health Authority, $3.4 million from the Immigrant Integration Services, $87,500 from the Latino Outreach; $250,000 from the Coalition F/Tech-Assist child program, and over $6 million from a program that covers the costs for those too poor to pay for their loved ones to have a proper burial.

“We are very concerned about the cuts that Rauner has proposed to vital services that help homeless families get off the streets and become independent,” said Julie Dworkin, director of Policy for the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless. “These are life-saving services and they’ve already been subject to budget cuts over the years. They really cannot afford to cut back anymore.”

“The proposed budget cuts will only further devastate our communities. In June of 2013, I attempted to access emergency rental assistance through the state Homeless Prevention program.   However, I was turned down because of the lack of available funds which contributed to my current homelessness.  If Rauner’s cuts go through, even more people will be turned away and it will only create more homelessness,” said Charles Austin, a formerly homeless leader with the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless.

The “Day of Action” protest rally will be held Monday, May 4, 2015, 10 a.m. at the James R. Thompson Center, 100 W. Randolph St. The Coalition is urging Gov. Rauner to “Restore the cuts, and stop balancing the budget on the backs of the poor.”

For more information, contact:

Chinta Strausberg

Chintabernie@aol.com

312.371.7730

Sharyn Elman

esharyn@hotmail.com

847.528.6918

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