The Governor's Practical Joke

root - Posted on 01 January 2000

by Bruce Allison/PNN

The Governor caused letters (one of several sent about various services to folks with fixed limited incomes) to be sent to folks with in-home support services, a deliberately confusing communication which will cause many to lose those services. It will create major hardships for them and home-care workers (independents and/or relatives).

Folks should call (Consumer Rights For Community Living) 415-703-0286 or (Bay Area Legal Aid) 415-982-1300 to get help understanding what to do if it is necessary to ask for a Fair Hearing. If you are a social worker or case manager at a SRO or senior housing, confused about the letter, you too can call those numbers. Anyone who wants to help Consumer Rights For Community Living as a volunteer can call

Fair Hearing appeals will help folks using in-home support hang on to 2 or more months of services. There are only 5 “Administrative Law Judges” for the entire state of California, the more appeals the slower the process—which is a good thing! This should be done immediately, Fair Hearings can only be requested 10 days after the post mark is stomped on the letter, a nasty little piece of the Governator’s “practical joke”.

Social workers and case managers with clients living in SRO hotels that still don’t have in-hotel mail box service from our “wonderful” U.S. “Probable” Postal Service—which still has hostility in its semi-corporate heart for SRO tenants—should energetically encourage them to check their mail EVERY DAY (which seems like every day…) that they are in the Governator’s crosshairs.

If the client is vision-impaired or doesn’t speak English or Spanish, this, too, must be mentioned in the Fair Hearing request because the letter is limited to those languages and was printed in very very very fine print that even challenged the eye sight of the writer facilitator of this article, and the trans-gender staff writer for POOR Magazine, sitting nearby kibitzing on the writing of this article.

Due to the limited number of “judges”, this elder scholar believes that if virtually everyone affected by this situation appeals the process it will take 9 months to slog through the case load, which will create a lovely end-run effect around the Governator’s horrible strategy.


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