MILWAUKEE -- Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker signed four bills in Milwaukee Monday - taking steps to help the disabled community. However, Democrats are questioning his motives, saying he's playing politics with disabled issues in the midst of a recall campaign.
Walker signed a bill Monday removing an enrollment cap that his administration put in place on the Family Care Program. The program is designed to provide assistance to families to keep the elderly and disabled out of nursing homes. "The best environment for the individual is often the most cost-effective environment. We did it in a way that wasn't just about pushing more money into it. We did it in a way that made the program sustainable," Walker said.
Walker agreed to lift the cap only after the Obama administration ordered him to do so. Graeme Zielinski, the spokesperson for the Democratic Party of Wisconsin, accused Walker of using the disabled community as a political prop. "Only someone as dishonest as Scott Walker would try to take credit for lifting a cap that he tried to impose. It's pretty shocking that he's using a community that he's almost ground underfoot in this budget as props, as he's seeking recall here. These are people he's cut transportation for, Family Care, BadgerCare, housing assistance, heating assistance - virtually every program that helps the disabled community in Wisconsin, Scott Walker has tried to destroy," Zielinski said.
Walker says it was his plan all along to lift the cap. "I spoke with the Journal Sentinel editorial board in June, and I spelled out at that time, long before any information from the federal government, that we planned on having a plan in place by the end of the year," Walker said.
Walker signed three other bills relating to disability issues. One of them bans the "R" word. Another allows teachers to physically restrain students who pose a risk to their safety or the safety of others.