Monday, June 20, 2011

People with disabilities in Minnesota facing cuts in services

Minnesota is staring at a government shutdown.  The closure will no doubt effect thousands who depend on government aid, but some say the current budget proposed by the legislature is unacceptable.  Leaders and family members of people with disabilities say they have already seen service cuts of 5-8% since 2005. They do not want any more services taken away.

The program coordinator of the Arc West Central says her son, Aaron, who has Down syndrome, is like 2000 others unable to get a Developmental Disorder waiver under the cuts. Because of this he does not have staff to help him learn basic life traits and continue on with his independence.  She fears one day he will end up in a group home.

"He wouldn't get to make choices necessarily and it's just a shame that we don't give people these opportunities." Donna Atherton, Are West Central Coordinator, said.

Senator Keith Langseth says a big reason the governor has reject the current budget is because of deep cuts to programs that help people. Dayton has proposed 1.8 billion - of the 3.6 billion in debt - be taken care of with cuts. He would like the other 1.8 billion to be taken care of in the form of revenue. Though, Langseth says it would be an impossibility to for the state to come to an agreement like that before June 30th.

No comments:

Post a Comment