Illinois budget situation forcing seniors to lose assistance pro - KMOV.com

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Illinois budget situation forcing seniors to lose assistance programs

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ALTON, Ill. (KMOV.com) – In Illinois, assistance for seniors is being stripped away due to the state’s financial situation.

The state has been operating without a budget for more than 200 days, and it seems like it’s hurting the most vulnerable.

370 seniors depend on the program. The budget crisis will leave 40 percent fewer seniors with access to the service from Senior Services Plus. 

"Each meal that a senior receives is 33 percent of their daily nutrition," said Jonathan Becker, Executive Director of Senior Services Plus. 

Frencis Gonzales, 79, lives in Alton and is one of hundreds who depends on the ‘Meals on Wheels’ program for food. Gonzales has relied on the program for the past eight years, and is now left wondering where he is going to get his next needed meal.

“I have a hard time getting around to begin with, so I depend on them a lot,” Gonzales said. “I just can’t go out and run and get this and run and get that you know?”

Each meal a senior receives through the program is about a third of their daily nutrition.

The budget situation is also going to put an end to the transportation service provided for seniors to get their medication and go to the doctor on February 1.

Due to the budget crisis, Senior Services Plus was forced to eliminate or cut back five staff positions aimed to assist the seniors.

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