Community Coalition Calls On Governor To End 'Emergency' Wait
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
October 18, 2004
MARPLE, PENNSYLVANIA--A coalition of people with intellectual disabilities, their parents, family members, and service providers wants Governor Edward G. Rendell to put an end to the "emergency" waiting list for community services.
Members of the Pennsylvania Wait List Campaign say there are 20,383 people waiting for services through the Pennsylvania Office of Mental Retardation. Included in that number are 2,130 people who are considered in "emergency" status because their parents will no longer be able to care for them at home.
"In many cases, the mother or father is in his or her 70s or 80s, many of whom are widowed or with an ill spouse," Sheila Stasko, campaign coordinator, told the Delaware County Daily Times. "The parents are in need of services and support."
The group wants Rendell to add $67.8 million to the 2005 state budget, which will be matched by federal funds, to pay for enough community supports to eliminate the emergency waiting list. The Arc of Pennsylvania also wants money added for regular cost of living adjustments within the current community-based support system.
"Arc seeks covenant with state" (Daily Times)