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Schwarzenegger wants felons out of home care program

September 24, 2010 |  1:20 pm

Timesinvestigation A story in Friday's Times details how the state is permitting scores of felons convicted of crimes as serious as rape, murder, and elder abuse to work in the state's massive home healthcare program, getting paid to provide services for some of the most vulnerable Californians in their residences.

In a letter to legislative leaders released Friday, the governor calls the situation a "public safety crisis." He also scolds lawmakers for failing to address the problem, saying numerous attempts by the administration to "engage" the Legislature on the issue have gone nowhere.

"Let me be clear: Choosing to protect these felons over the vulnerable beneficiaries in this program is akin to releasing violent felons from prison and sending them straight into a nursing home on a work-release program," Schwarzenegger wrote. "I am hard pressed to imagine that any member of the Legislature would allow a convicted sex offender to take care of their own grandmother in a nursing home. But if the Legislature continues to resist making changes in the law, the Legislature is essentially saying it is OK for that to occur to someone else's grandmother in their own home."

--Evan Halper in Sacramento