On Thursday, October 15th the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed “the state must also have a plan for allowing beneficiaries to choose either institutional services or home and community based services.” In essence, allowing legal guardians to choose whether or not to keep their loved ones at Murray Center or a group home.
“This is what we and the Murray Parents’ Association have been fighting for since the Quinn administration tried to intimidate legal guardians into relocating their loved ones, including the wards of state,” said Rep. Meier. “The court ruling will protect the residents living at Murray, the only state operated developmental center serving central and parts of southern Illinois.
Thanks to the dedication and hard work from the Murray Parents’ Association, Friends of Murray Center, State Rep. John Cavaletto, State Rep. Charlie Meier, State Senator Kyle McCarter, Governor Rauner and dozens of Illinois legislators, Murray Center will remain open. The recent federal court decision is another positive court ruling in favor of the residents at Murray Center and their friends and family.
The federal court did affirm that State Operated Developmental Centers (SODC) such as Murray Center could close, however as it stands there are no plans to close Murray Center. Currently, there are seven SODCs located throughout Illinois. Murray Center is the only SODC serving central Illinois and parts of southern Illinois, making Murray Center feasible for the State and its residents that call Murray Center their home.
*The U.S. Court of Appeals Opinion can be found here.