Rep. Meier Co-Sponsors Successful Effort to Crack Down on Irresponsible CILAs and Protect CILA Residents

SPRINGFIELD, IL – State Representative Charlie Meier (R-Okawville) has worked for many years to protect residents with profound physical and mental disabilities living in Illinois’ State-Operated Developmental Centers (SODC) and Community Integrated Living Arrangements (CILA). Meier is currently a member of the House Human Services and Health and Human Services Appropriation Committees. Rep. Meier announced on last week that he led a successful effort to amend legislation that builds in stronger protections and strict penalties and regulations for what he deems ‘bad CILAs’.  SB 3753 cleared the House of Representatives on Wednesday with a vote of 111-000. Meier says the changes are a long time coming.

“I’ve worked for many years to root out corruption, negligence, and abuse at various Community Integrated Living Arrangement facilities throughout the state,” Meier said. “I won’t tolerate any abuse of the residents of these facilities. The people living in these situations have physical and mental disabilities that mean they need extra help with everyday things like cooking, cleaning, bathing, and using the restroom. Not one person living in a CILA has the same set of life challenges. SB 3753, as amended, will provide the right kind of consequences for private companies that do not live up to the high expectations that I have for the care that is supposed to be provided to the individuals living in Illinois’ CILAs.”

SB 3753 includes language that requires SODC and CILAs that contract with the State of Illinois to provide housing and personal care services to residents to develop an annual review process to determine that the needs of the individual resident are being met. The bill also allows the Department of Human Services to impose progressive sanctions on providers that fail to comply with the terms of the contract with the state. Meier says the state could stop payments, suspend admissions, revoke certifications, and revoke the licenses of CILAs that break the terms of their contract with the state of Illinois.

“Simply put, we place our trust and an enormous amount of our taxpayers’ dollars into providing care for individuals living in CILAs. If a company is taking that money and failing to provide the level of care that we expect them to provide, they can be punished with severe penalties,” Meier said. “The horrors that I have heard have happened to residents living in CILAs include purposeful starvation, sexual assault, physical non-sexual assault, and the list goes on. We cannot, as a state, go down the path of placing residents in CILAs and then fail to hold accountable the companies that are responsible for the failure to provide excellent care and ensure the safety and well-being of the residents.”

Meier says the effort to amend SB 3753 was successful because he has advocated for safer CILAs as various administrations have tried to move residents out of SODCs like the Warren G. Murray Center in Centralia.

“Going as far back as Governor Pat Quinn, administrations have tried to trim down the numbers of people living in SODCs in favor of CILAs,” Meier said. “Not everyone can live in a CILA. Some people have such profound disabilities and behavioral issues that we must, as a state, provide them care in state-run settings. However, CILAs do have their place. That is why I believe it is so important that the State sets high expectations and standards for the care of people who are placed in community arrangements. This bill will put some teeth in the law and hold companies accountable if they don’t provide the high level of care that is required in the bill.”

SB 3753 was amended in the Illinois House and now moves back to the Senate for a concurrence motion. Meier says he expects Governor Pritzker will eventually sign the legislation into law.


State Representative Charlie Meier represents the 109th District which includes portions of Bond, Clinton, Madison, St. Clair, and Washington counties. For more information, please visit or contact Rep. Meier’s district office at 618-651-0405