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Providing information, education, and training to build knowledge, develop skills, and change attitudes that will lead to increased independence, productivity, self determination, integration and inclusion (IPSII) for people with developmental disabilities and their families.

Advocates Want Money Spent To Reduce Waiting Lists
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
October 17, 2003

TOPEKA, KANSAS--The Big Tent Coalition, made up of 80 organizations representing community-based supports for people with disabilities, has accused the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services of failing to use $11 million in state money as legislators intended -- to reduce the waiting lists for in-home supports.

The coalition released an open letter to Governor Kathleen Sebelius Thursday asking her to reduce the waiting lists now, and to earmark nearly $57 million in her next budget proposal for essential services.

"Seniors and persons with disabilities have a civil right to live in the most integrated setting, usually their own home," the letter stated.

While 10,000 Kansans with disabilities currently receive community-based services, another 2,700 are waiting for such supports to avoid being forced into nursing homes or other institutions.

"The clear legislative intent was, over $11 million in state general fund dollars and well over $20 million all funds were pumped into waivers specifically to move people off of waiting lists and into services," said Rocky Nichols, a Democrat from Topeka who served in the House last session until he resigned to become executive director of Kansas Advocacy and Protective Services Inc. "And that's what we're advocating -- that that promise be kept."

Related article:
"Disabled holding Sebelius to word" Lawrence Journal-World


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