Kentuckians with mental and physical disabilities filled the halls of the state capital and annex Wednesday. They were in Frankfort to lobby lawmakers for social service funding.
For 18 years, hundreds of citizens with disabilities have participated in the 874-K rally. The event honors the needs of 874,000 people with challenges to activities of daily living. Long- time advocate Sheila Shuster says Governor Matt Bevin’s budget calls for no expansion in Medicaid waivers designed to help those with serious disabilities live in their communities. “All of those waivers have waiting lists right now. And, if there’s no expansion, we run the risk of some of these people ending up in an institution or a nursing home at probably four to five to six times the expense,” said Shuster.
Shuster says the answer lies in generating more revenue, whether that comes from an increase in the state’s cigarette tax or closing tax loopholes or both.