Archive for Friday, June 17, 2011

Kansans with disabilities could lose services because of state budget cuts

June 17, 2011


— State budget cuts to human services are starting to inundate local communities.

Cottonwood Inc., which provides services to individuals with developmental disabilities in Douglas and Jefferson counties, is searching for ways to make up for cuts that will remove state funding for 26 people.

“We’re trying to continue to serve them,” said Sharon Spratt, chief executive officer of Cottonwood. “We are meeting with the county next month to see if they could help make up a little bit of this loss.”

The 26 people with developmental disabilities receive staff support to help them with their daily lives and personal needs, she said.

“They function pretty well, but they do need supports in order to keep them healthy and productive and safe,” Spratt said.

Cottonwood is losing about $250,000 in state funding in the program, she said.

That is just one of many cuts that will hit social service agencies as the Legislature reduced funding to the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services by approximately $20 million for the fiscal year that starts July 1.


Phillbert 4 years ago

Kansas Republicans are just following Christ's teachings. As Jesus said, "Whatsoever you do to the least of my brothers you do because you need to give tax cuts to big business."

ljwhirled 4 years ago

That would be section Matthew 25:40 of the Jesus Christ Corporate Charter.

Jimo 4 years ago

You can't follow both Ayn Rand and Jesus Christ. Who do you suppose Sam will pick?

ksjayhawk74 4 years ago

Jesus who? That name sounds like he could be an illegal immigrant. Kris Kobach is checking his immigration status right now, we wouldn't want him having access to any public services here in Kansas. God forbid he being looked to for guidance.

Reta Cosby 4 years ago

"Thou shalt not add to or take away from the word of God."

Jeff Zamrzla 4 years ago

Ayn Rand would be proud to know they've bough into her ponzi scheme! Support the Bernie Maddoff's before anyomne else.

Jan Rolls 4 years ago

Glad you voted for sam the sham now? He lied when he said he would look out for you.

Crazy_Larry 4 years ago

You have to admit though, he did get us all a new State Logo...

Mr. Brownback, We the People do not care for, or need, a new State Logo. The Flag of Kansas is our logo...Stop wasting tax payer time and money on such trivial male-bovine excrement. Will you please inform the public what this new state logo cost us and how many jobs it has created? Spending money on a new logo is akin to rubbing salt in the wounds created by threatening pay cuts, laying off workers, and defunding services to the elderly, disabled and children (the most vulnerable among us). One more question, Sam, WWJD?

Bob_Keeshan 4 years ago

Still plenty of money in the SRS budget to hire over 20 new administrators to a bunch of $100,000 a year jobs.

Welcome to the Enron style of government.

SDTPlant 4 years ago

Good point. And if you look further, most of these jobs have gone to cronies of Brownback from elsewhere in the country. By the time he's done, we'll regain our rightful position as the laughing stock of the country, maybe even the world.

sciencegeek 4 years ago

Well, Brownback said he was all about "jobs, jobs, jobs". He just forgot to say it would be high-dollar jobs for people from Florida to push faith-based initiatives, etc. instead of taking care of Kansas. After all, it's not like those new people will actually STAY here.

liar 4 years ago

A societies success can be measured by the lengths to which it supports the weakest members. Welcome to failure, welcome to misery, welcome to greed and the failure of government to support and promote the interests of all it's citizens.

Who voted for these miserable failures that want the elite minority to enjoy all of the wealth and privilege. What the hell were you thinking. Oh, I see, you weren't at all.

Lawrence Morgan 4 years ago

If you were on disability insurance, how would you feel? This is not to be given up in any Kansas community.

somebodynew 4 years ago

Excuse me Number_1 - but you must be very confused this a.m.

Sam FOLLOW a god. I firmly believe he believes HE is. (Unless it is named Koch.)

mloburgio 4 years ago

If you want a republican to care about you, remain a fetus!

"Of course it hurts, you're getting screwed by an elephant!"

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years ago

Sure, this looks bad and heartless and all that, but please, give Sam some time. Soon, he'll let us know what his final solution is, and all will be well (as long as your name is Koch.)

hannahss 4 years ago

I think that the "final solution" may be on its way. This is how it starts, attacking those least able to defend themselves. As a defender of the least able during most of my life, I am horrified at the direction our society is going. I, too, wonder where he finds his religious inspiration. It is not in the Christianity that I believe and have studied.

weeslicket 4 years ago

this is an example of the proverbial "republicans believe in giving people a hand up, and not a hand-out".

deec 4 years ago

Only if the hand is raised to deliver a blow.

Alfred_W 4 years ago

Or that hand has the middle finger extended

Getaroom 4 years ago

Not to worry, "The Kansas Mega Church of The Brownbackward Corporation" and his crusader soldiers will save the day. Look at how well praying for rain has turned out in Texas with his pure of heart and selfless help - we need not be of concern fellow citizens - all is well. Rest peacefully in denial. And really, with Minister Phelps and the throngs of sheepls at his side, all can and will be accomplished before the next predicted Rapture.

Heaven on earth in Kansas at last!! Praise the Brownbackward!
He can do it, we can help.

rtwngr 4 years ago

Government can't fund everything for everybody. There has been too much bloat in the budget by the liberal controlled state house for too long. Going on a diet is no fun but sometimes you need to lose some weight off of your fat A$$ so you don't die. Good for Sam!

Bob_Keeshan 4 years ago

For those keeping score, rtwngr just told those at Cottonwood to "lose some weight off your fat A$$."

Ladies and gentlemen, the Kansas Republican Party.

sciencegeek 4 years ago

"Liberal controlled state house"

Are you nuts?!! The Republicans have been in control of the statehouse for decasdes! An occasional Democrat governor can't possibly overcome the perpetual majority of Republicans in both the House and Senate.

And BTW, just what exactly does "lose some weight off of you fat A$$" have to do with people with developmental disabilities?

What a bitter, miserable person you must be.

Scott Tichenor 4 years ago

Funds big oil just fine. You could take far less than 1% of the corporate welfare and easily fund dozens of small needed projects Brownie has removed. Your post is simple pure western Kansas h.s., and I'm from there and know it when I smell it.

Corey Williams 4 years ago

Give a man a fish and he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish and he eats for a lifetime. Just so long as he is physically/mentally capable of fishing.

yourworstnightmare 4 years ago

It's the ownership ship society.

If you don't own things or can't do your own, then you're on your own.

Liberty275 4 years ago

In fact, misery, as measured in the unofficial Misery Index that simply totals the unemployment and inflation rates, is at a 28-year high, reflective of how weak the economic recovery has been and how far there is to go.

Liberty275 4 years ago

How's that hopey changey thing working out for you brainiacs on the left now?

beatrice 4 years ago

Interesting that you would respond this way on a story about cuts made by a Republican governor. So Obama is to blame for the cuts made by Brownback?

At any rate, it is all working out much better than the mavericky winky-winky thing ever could have. Thanks for asking.

Brainiacs -- how cute.

yourworstnightmare 4 years ago

Iggy Pop supports a woman's right to murder her baby.

Cait McKnelly 4 years ago

And this has what to do with the subject?

Cait McKnelly 4 years ago

I wasn't talking about the Iggy Pop thing. I'm talking about dragging abortion into a thread about cuts to the disabled.

William Weissbeck 4 years ago

That's an easy one. That Hopey Changey thing costs money, but the US is broke, not from Obama's spending but from Bush's. Obama had to spend in order to keep us from falling to third world status in a matter of weeks. Watch Too Big to Fail or read the book. The brainiacs on Wall Street did more damage to the US financial system than the planes flying into the Twin Towers, and came within days of doing what only Russian ICBM's could have done. See the LJW story on cuts at the KDOL, "due to the prior administration using one time funds (the Stimulus) to retain workers = jobs. The states have no money, because Washington has none to send. It all went to Iraq, Afghanistan and tax cuts. Compound that with states racing to cut taxes even further, just where do you think the money is going to come from. I don't see the Kochs opening any community centers or funding in home visits for nurses and skilled social workers.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

I honestly hope this comes out the way intended.

How sad an occasion when another human is stricken with a developmental disability or traumatic injury placing them in need of constant care.

Decades ago there were state and county hospitals which offered long term care for those not able to keep the loved one home.

When did this switch to Cottonwood type services being assumed and expected? When did we begin to shift responsibility off the family? Many families took care of their own back in the day. These people believed it was their responsibility. Hard work you bet I know some who do this.

Some as in for example President Kennedy's family paid to keep a developmental disabled sister in a Wisconsin home designed for care of this type. I heard sometimes Cottonwood (they are not alone) pays for family members to care for the disabled family member. ????

Cottonwood is a great organization, but is it economically viable? Was it ever? if one really looked at the spiraling costs, growing clientele, and needs you could see the nightmare of expenses? With any government program one never witnesses status quo, but always more more more.

Cottonwood has grown to the point of perhaps needing to cut back just to see if there is any waste.

When did we as a society feel the need to provide free 24 hour round the clock in home care for all those who tragically are disabled? Cooking, cleaning, play, health needs, and transportation?

People now expect government assistance, no, demand it. We can no longer afford to be everything to everybody.

kernal 4 years ago

wissmo, I think the Cottonwood program you're referring to was a government subsidized program through Medicaid and /or Medicare. It's my understanding that program is one of the cuts.

Ken Lassman 4 years ago

It's a well known fact that supporting folks in the community is less expensive than in an institutional setting, wissmo. That's why states have deinstitutionalized as much as possible, supporting folks in decentralized/individual settings. Places like KNI and Parsons are still needed in Kansas because the degree of their disabilities can be supported better in such settings where they can share expensive technologies such as mechanical lifts, whirlpools and assistive technologies, resulting in an economy of scale. A dozen folks can easily share a whirlpool, which is cheaper than a dozen whirlpools in the community, if you get the idea.

It's not as cheap as it used to be to support folks in either the community or state residential facilities due to the fact that folks with multiple disabilities are living longer than ever before, and age-related supports are needed now since they continue to live. This is compounded by the fact that premature aging is the rule, not the exception with folks who are born with these conditions. And it's not just technology that makes it more expensive: staff have to have more training and you have to pay them a living wage or they'll just move on to a better job if you don't.

So this whole topic is not as black and white as you think....

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

I think in the beginning it was cheaper. Drop in assistance has turned into transportation and everything in between. Twenty four seven.

When we run individualized programs for each profoundly disabled citizen, just meals for instance have to be cost prohibitive.

Could be wrong, but let's say after public school one on one or even two on one teacher assistant education programs 3-21 ages is mind blowing in terms of return. Then add in certified staff, equipment, transportation, medical supplies, school nurses, to a point of what?

Then we rotate the unfortunate individual to a home based community program using yet more than one full time staff member per day is far beyond belief in costs.

As we are finding out the U.S.A. is running out of money. Yes how wonderful in a perfect world to do so much, but is spending hundreds of thousands of dollars a year on one individual something we can do?

My understanding is there are no more country or state homes for the disabled. It is also my understanding a well run home can offer a better more rewarding experience than some home bound programs at a fraction of the cost.

Of course I'm discussing an above board home like I worked in decades ago.

Ken Lassman 4 years ago

You need to get up to date, I'm afraid. When a person with developmental disabilities turns 22, most Medicaid benefits are cut way back. I don't know any programs with anything close to what you are describing. Better go back and talk to those same folks these days and see what they have to say.

Bob_Keeshan 4 years ago

Nice job comparing the Kennedy's to average Kansans. We all live in large compounds by the ocean, too.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

Kennedy's sister was at a home where some residents lived there free.

tomatogrower 4 years ago

Only because very rich residents paid extra. So was that fair to the very rich? You are saying that the programs we have now have to cut back, so we don't have to raise taxes on poor little rich people, but maybe there should be a 2 tier pricing for social services. You want your sister in an institution? You want medical care? Figure what percentage higher your income is compared to the rest of the state, and you pay that much more for basic, human services. Then the institution, doctors, hospitals, etc. can provide free services to others.

jafs 4 years ago

Many families also sent their kids off to an institution, and tried to forget about them.

My wife works at Cottonwood, and has for a long time - it is an excellent institution, combines public and private funding, employs folks with DD both in the community and at Cottonwood, and operates in a very sensible manner.

Management has foregone raises in order to not have to lay off folks at lower levels, and they have always managed to continue providing quality services to their clients/consumers.

Despite the fact that they are over-scrutinized and over-regulated by both the state and federal government, making the job of case manager about 60-80% paperwork, leaving rather little time for them to actually help the people they're trying to help.

gkerr 4 years ago

Jafs, The same is true in education and medicine. Money spent in documentation, maintaining a paper trail, defensive policies which are inherently inefficient yet necessary to placate the bureaucrats and inspectors hired by the administrators and bureaucrats. I know a bit about medicine, administrative costs used to be negligible, less than 15 % now 50 years later they are well over fifty percent. Most nurses and technicians spend huge amounts of time charting, documenting, supervising aids and assistants, scheduling, etc.. Less and less time at the bedside, with the patient, or in case of technicians testing.

William Weissbeck 4 years ago

In answer to Wissmo - because we left the 19th Century some time ago. The majority of us still see these providing these types of services as a function/responsibility of an enlightened, affluent society. If you think for one moment that this is a way for families to shirk their responsibilities and burdens on the rest of society, then you need to spend some serious time with some of these families.

notanota 4 years ago

You know why the Kennedy's paid for private institutionalization, something out of reach of most Americans? Wilowbrook.

That's what happened to kids before we had services that allowed kids with DD to stay at home and get services.

Jimo 4 years ago

You know, on South Park, when they had an elephant make love to a pig, it was hilarious.

But now, when I see the GOP making love to the Koch Bros., I'm as horrified as those poor little third graders at the sight of the spectacle.

Cait McKnelly 4 years ago

There's a bumper sticker out now that says, "Of course it hurts. You're being s****ed by an elephant."

verity 4 years ago

Wissmo: "Decades ago there were state and county hospitals which offered long term care for those not able to keep the loved one home."

Were you ever in one of those hospitals?

"I heard sometimes Cottonwood (they are not alone) pays for family members to care for the disabled family member. ????"

Sometimes (probably often) the family can't afford to have a person stay home to do the care without some help and normally it is less expensive to keep a person at home if possible than to put them in an institution---not to speak of the fact that it's usually better for the person.

Also, we are not necessarily talking about people who are completely disabled---they run the spectrum and many are able to have jobs, live in the community and become at least partly self-sufficient because of the help of Cottonwood.

There's always waste in all organizations, public or private. It seems to me like it would be better to concentrate on finding and fixing the waste rather than this slash and burn policy.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

Were you ever in one of those hospitals?

Yes, I had to do a rotation through a county hospital for my degree. I was very impressed, including work they were doing with Autism back in the day.

I do realize there are some settings which were/are bad.

pace 4 years ago

Cutting services because of the economy, sounds reasonable until you know someone without a wheel chair and a billionaire that doesn't pay any tax.

gkerr 4 years ago

Pace, Cuts aren't easy and there are winners and losers in how the cuts are allocated. We are trillions in debt at the Federal level- some direct indebtedness of 15 trillion up 30 % in just the past several years. When federal indebtedness is calculated by apparent or anticipated revenues over committed outlays according to current law we are some 60 to 100 trillion short of being able fund our commitments. Google household debt. We as households are in debt about 18 % of our total family assets. Just to get back to 1994 level of family indebtedness we would have to cut 20,000$ of per household debt- we would still be in debt to the tune of 14% of assets. Everyone of us who are not uberwealthy must cut back and that includes, families, state, and local government and especially the Federal government. Gkerr

Bob_Keeshan 4 years ago

Indeed, thanks to three factors: first, large tax cuts which benefited fewer than 5% of US households. Now every household is in debt, but every household didn't benefit from the tax cutting strategy. How interesting you now think that those who benefited don't need to cut back. What a slave you are.

Second, our "spending problem" can be summed up in two words: Iraq and Afghanistan.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

Until we get over the "fear" factor of people in need going hungry, or without wheelchairs the problem will just get worse.

Just using the two examples above, Douglas County offers free lunches all summer, plus the half dozen pantries, and last but not least church association, nobody is going hungry unless they are too lazy to make a call.

Google wheelchair help, and begin sorting out the charities. BTW........I helped a person a few months ago have her chair repaired for free.

I do feel we should really look into to what true need is.

Jimo 4 years ago

We're in debt as a direct consequence of tax cuts.

  1. A decade ago the budget was balanced and surpluses were being used to pay down debt.

  2. By 2010, all U.S. debt was projected to be paid off.

  3. Who gave away that tax revenue? A certain Texan and his GOP cronies.

  4. The federal tax take is now the lowest since Truman was in office.

  5. Tax levels place the U.S. almost at the bottom for taxes as a percentage of GDP among all developed nations.

  6. Increasing the tax levels to that of Canada (itself a low tax country) would instantly balance the budget.

  7. Don't give away tax revenues and then complain about debt.

  8. 1 choice of Americans for addressing the budget deficit? Raise taxes on wealth.

Jimo 4 years ago

haha I make my money from the "successful". Some are geniuses. Some are idiots. Some could make a million from a magic marker, a paperclip, and a battery. Some inherited it all from papa and will leave junior without a dime.

Jimo 4 years ago

Oh, and as people are pointing out to me, you'll notice Lib can't even focus on the substance of the post.

Libertarians and Marxists are virtually indistinguishable in their refusal to allow facts to interfere with their theory.

Can't you just see Lib in his Pj's, hiding in the basement, with fingers in his ears shouting "I can't hear you"!

jafs 4 years ago

Sorry, but I'm not getting it.

Many people make poor decisions regarding political choices, from my perspective, and it doesn't have anything to do with their age.

beatrice 4 years ago

It was a joke. Remember, in this particular conversation I'm considered old myself, and I like voting. I'm referring to the people in Florida who incorrectly voted on the butterfly ballots in Florida in 2000. If the people there who thought they were voting for Gore in 2000 actually did cast a vote for him, rather than casting no vote or even voting for Buchanan, Gore would have been our President back then ... and today we would know nothing but happiness and prosperity.

Yes, another joke at the end, lame though it may be.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

Yes (sarcasm) the young voters did a great job of electing President Obama.

Off topic, I know understand he is making noise about not caring about being a one term feller. Oh my!

ivalueamerica 4 years ago

The Christian Right GOP, recently, used the phrase "God helps those who help themselves" as Biblical inspiration for cutting services to the poor, children and the most vulnerable.

However, that was not in the Bible. He bore false witness. The Bible very clearly teaches something different, compassion for those in need, not harsh judgement and turning your back.

gkerr 4 years ago

Ivaluamerica, Who said that? Document it please. Was it the whole Christian right GOP? Who could legitimately speak for all GOP Christian Conservatives?

KSWingman 4 years ago

2 Thessalonians 3:10: "...this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat."

verity 4 years ago

So we are to let those who cannot work starve? Well, that will fix a lot of our problems.

notanota 4 years ago

Ah yes, because disabled people are sooo lazy. Especially the children.

notanota 4 years ago

Then you believe God wants children and severely disabled people to be shunned and die of hunger. Or, you know, you could take it in context as a single line out of a letter to the presumably able-bodied members of the church of Thessalonians.

It also ignores the point of nearly all of these programs - they do, indeed, involve work. It's not a matter of willingness to work. It's a matter of ability and opportunity, both of which decrease when the funding dries up.

KSWingman 4 years ago

Hey, it's the inerrant word of God.

If you have a problem with it, take it up with God.

notanota 4 years ago

No, it's your interpretation I have issues with. You've taken a snippet of a snippet of a translation of an ancient letter from Paul and interpreted it in your own way.

If you have a problem with that, take it up with the rest of the Bible, where I'm pretty sure it also says:

On the last day, Jesus will say to those on His right hand, "Come, enter the Kingdom. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was sick and you visited me." Then Jesus will turn to those on His left hand and say, "Depart from me because I was hungry and you did not feed me, I was thirsty and you did not give me to drink, I was sick and you did not visit me." These will ask Him, "When did we see You hungry, or thirsty or sick and did not come to Your help?" And Jesus will answer them, "Whatever you neglected to do unto one of these least of these, you neglected to do unto Me!"

But only the quote about he who doesn't work doesn't eat made it into the Soviet constitution, so kudos for you for finding the important snippets, Komrade.

KSWingman 4 years ago

Did Jesus really say that? Your cite was written in the third person by someone who was not present at the time, while mine was first-person from the the founder of Christianity.

Hearsay vs. direct testimony.

notanota 4 years ago

Paul was the attributed author of Thessalonians, genius. You know, the Paul who only met Jesus in visions? There's plenty of dispute as to who actually wrote down any portion of the Bible, but the one thing scholars agree on is that Jesus didn't actually pull out a pen and paper and write it down Himself.

So tell me, how's your ancient Greek, Komrade?

KSWingman 4 years ago

You just agreed with me. I knew you'd get there eventually.

parrothead8 4 years ago

The headline, "Kansans with disabilities could lose services because of state budget cuts," is inaccurate. It should read:

Kansans with disabilities are losing services because of state budget cuts

gkerr 4 years ago

Bob Keeshan, Wrong Bob. Stimulus package plus Tarp, plus foreign wars, plus Medicare, plus other entitlements have been building for 70 years, they are not new. Medicare trust fund is bankrupt and has been for years as incontinent politicians have raided it and used it for disgressionary spending they can get political credit for and thus empower themselves by blessing the electorate with candy, bread, circuses, and even more expectation raising entitlements. Social security lock box likewise plundered and empty.
Since 1945 Republicans have controlled both senate and house for 12 years, Democrats for 44 years. During that period republicans held presidency 36 years, democrats 30 years. The entitlements that are accounting for the future debt of 60 to 100 trillion dollars exceeding visible revenues have been on the books for decades. Stimulus package alone matched Iraq war cost in one bill. It is very clear, historically, that since 1945 elites including Ivies and Media, and in recent decades corporate elites have been left of center-there has been relentless pressure to expand size and scope of government. Pilgrims citizens are right of center but with opinion molders, academics, media, intellectuals pushing Keynesian expansion here and In Europe we have under saved and overspent for decades. As A famous Pastor demagogue has said, "the chickens are coming home to roost", and so they are. Gkerr

gkerr 4 years ago

Bob Keeshan, Wrong Bob. Stimulus package plus Tarp, plus foreign wars, plus Medicare, plus other entitlements have been building for 70 years, they are not new. Medicare trust fund is bankrupt and has been for years as incontinent politicians have raided it and used it for disgressionary spending they can get political credit for and thus empower themselves by blessing the electorate with candy, bread, circuses, and even more expectation raising entitlements. Social security lock box likewise plundered and empty.
Since 1945 Republicans have controlled both senate and house for 12 years, Democrats for 44 years. During that period republicans held presidency 36 years, democrats 30 years. The entitlements that are accounting for the future debt of 60 to 100 trillion dollars exceeding visible revenues have been on the books for decades. Stimulus package alone matched Iraq war cost in one bill. It is very clear, historically, that since 1945 elites including Ivies and Media, and in recent decades corporate elites have been left of center-there has been relentless pressure to expand size and scope of government. Pilgrims citizens are right of center but with opinion molders, academics, media, intellectuals pushing Keynesian expansion here and In Europe we have under saved and overspent for decades. As A famous Pastor demagogue has said, "the chickens are coming home to roost", and so they are. Gkerr

gkerr 4 years ago

to all, Sorry I flagged this comment as inadvertent double post. Gkerr

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years ago

Which makes it doubly incoherent rambling and ranting.

gkerr 4 years ago

Just Another,

What part of 60 to 100 trillion shortfall of projected revenues versus promised government services and entitlements don't you understand? And that's just the federal governments projected debt, doesn't include state, local, corporate, and household debt. Average American household debt is 18.6 % of household net worth including property, household goods, autos, investments, stocks and bonds, savings, retirement funds, etc.. Cuts are being made by families and homes are being lost as well as jobs.
Government at all levels must cut back too. Chickens meet roost. Gkerr

Bob_Keeshan 4 years ago

You might want to check your facts. The effect on the debt of the stimulus and TARP (which is actually making money for the government) make up about 10% of the effect on the debt, the other 90% comes from two wars and tax cuts for 5% of the population. Now we all share the debt, but we didn't get the tax cut.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

We need to become Americans again. Although me thinks we are drifting further apart. Texas Governor was quoted as saying, forget the left they will never like us anyway.

woodscolt 4 years ago

"We need to become Americans again." and hate thy neighbor

woodscolt 4 years ago

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woodscolt 4 years ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

woodscolt 4 years ago

We gotta make way for a new logo somehow. These people with disabilities can be ignored by the elitist slimeback. The republican party is the anti-people party, proven once again.

verity 4 years ago

Rarely is anything completely black and white. Unfortunately a lot of people seem to see things that way.

I have worked for both the public and the private sectors and for non-profit organizations in a number of different states and have talked to many people about their own experiences. There is always waste and there are always those who will try to game the system. Some will give 110% even when treated badly and some will do no more than they can get by with. Others are not well trained to do their job or are badly supervised and don't really know what they are supposed to be doing. Often there are personality problems which are not being addressed in any sort of helpful way, although a lot of time may be spent making the trek to HR.

What I'm advocating is focusing in on the problems and fixing them, not using the current slash and burn everything in sight which, as far as I can tell, never actually fixes anything and quite often costs more in the long run.

Bringing in new management often only makes the problems worse. As I have said before---ask the people who are actually doing the job how it can be done better and more efficiently. Not only do they know better than management or someone brought in from the outside how things can be improved, it gives them an incentive to improve and makes them feel appreciated---something which certainly is often missing in the workplace today.

Waste and inefficiency can only be adequately addressed from the lowest level---trickle up, not trickle down.

tomatogrower 4 years ago

Well, I guess the conservatives do want to take us back to the "good old days". Back when adults with extreme disabilities probably died before their parents became incapable of taking care of them. And you seldom saw them in public. Conservatives are tired of being served somewhere by someone who isn't "normal". In Lawrence, the conservatives don't do their own recycling, because one of "those people" might talk to them.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

Cottonwood takes folks on SSI and make them into tax payers....ever think of that? And consumers of ???????? Really?

Not the folks who need one on one busses and be hand fed. Autie, maybe you ought to take a peek in the light. How many tax and private donation job training programs do we have in this state?

We have job training programs with more staff than folks they claim to train. Cost effective?

tomatogrower 4 years ago

He might have to see people who aren't "normal". He would rather they were in an institution where he didn't have to see them.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

ha ha ha. Just because some of us realize this nation can not keep doing everything for everybody or better yet finding what we can do and doing it better does not mean we do not care.

I have hand fed profoundly disabled people many times. I enjoy very much working with the severe disabled.

I also know some more moderately developmentally disabled prefer being among themselves. Not all, but some. A women once told me , she had no real friends. Lots of attention, but nobody to watch cartoons with.

whats_going_on 4 years ago


although I reckon he's too good to step into such an establishment.

notanota 4 years ago

I can name several very specific individuals that work jobs in spite of needing a lot of supports (but I won't on this forum). The cost of their care is lowered because they can work, they are happier, and we as a society aren't warehousing a human being capable of working and having a degree of self-determination.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

Not writing about people needing medium to little support. People who need round the clock 24 hour care more often than not more than one full time staff member to care for them.

And.......are we duplicating services?

notanota 4 years ago

If they need constant one on one care, how is it a duplication to have that care in a home instead of an institution?

verity 4 years ago

And the desired outcome is to break government so bad that it can be easily destroyed. Then Sam can be dictator in the name of his god.

The Republicans ever since Ronald Reagan have made this very clear, although Reagan was doing it in the name of a different god---greed and power.

All the same in the end except that religion mixed in seems to make it even worse.

Jan Rolls 4 years ago

Sam the sham thinks he was elected king

William Weissbeck 4 years ago

Thank God, literally, that someone pointed out that Ayn Rand's philosophy and Christianity are not compatible. The conservatives that embrace both refuse to acknowledge the bi-polar, schizophrenia that are subjecting themselves to. I just don't want to be around when their heads finally explode.

whats_going_on 4 years ago

By cutting services for these consumers, and possibly putting them out of their jobs at CW, they'll just end up needing MORE assistance. How does this makes sense?

Oh, it doesn't.

Cait McKnelly 4 years ago

"A nation's greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members." ~ Mahatma Ghandi Welcome to the new "Christian based" (hahahaha coughcough*) Objectivism.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

We often make mistakes, but in the long run I do think this nation tries to even the playing field for all. The Cabrini–Green public housing experiment gone wrong in Chicago comes to mind.

We learned and quit sticking a billion into a failed program. ***Cottonwood is a great organization and have great people working. So did Cabrini-Green.

My only concern with Cottonwood type care is have we reached a point where the shear costs make it impossible to continue. We need to look at alternatives. We as a nation do have a hard time correcting our mistakes, for instance.

There are honest mental health care professionals who would tell you in private about the horrors caused by closing state and county mental institutions. These horrors are going on today.

notanota 4 years ago

Do let me know again how poor-only public housing of Cabrini-Green was a huge failure (and was replaced by mixed income housing) and therefore the disabled should be in disabled-only public housing instead of integrated into the community. I can totally see your point about the huge graffiti and gang violence problem they've got over at Cottonwood, though.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

The analogy was expense. Cabrini-Green began as a rather simple concept. Poor folks = provide housing. Personal round the clock in home care is exactly the same simple concept. Same in the sense "gone wrong too expensive due to inefficiency."

Far far too often we spend ourselves into oblivion as in Cabrini-Green before we discover how far wrong we went. A study showed we could have purchased a home for each of the residents in what we spent.

How utterly American, how ridiculous. We seek to help the less fortunate with housing, then spend more, so much more, we could have built a small home and given it to the unfortunate.

All I'm stating is with all the expense of staffing a profoundly disabled person, is it more cost efficient to just hire the family full time.

Can we afford to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars, especially when we are cutting services everywhere else. Is there a way to assist our less fortunate by combining services?

notanota 4 years ago

Ok, first off, put down the dog whistle. I'm sure you didn't intend to blow it. The situations are not the same, and your analogy falls appart with any sort of examination.

Secondly, provide some statistics and clarification here. Just exactly how many people are receiving one-on-one, round-the-clock In-home care? What type of expense are they incurring? Surely they're not getting 24/7 doctor care - something like an aid or respite worker, right? Someone who earns very little but enables the in-home custodian to do things like take a shower and shop for eggs without worrying that their loved one is going to die in their absence. What would be the same expense for institutionalized care for that same individual? Are these minor children? I think I'd rather have my child cared for at home than in some sort of institutional setting were it me, and I don't begrudge some other family that same setting. Are they attended by someone with expertise beyond what a family member could provide, such as respiratory, speech, or occupational therapy?

I'm also confused about what you're arguing. You seem to be moving the goalposts. First you seemed to be against in-home care and arguing that the Kennedys sent their child to an institution on their own dime, and now you seem to be in favor of it, only hiring the family as the caregivers. While I see some benefit to that idea, I can also see some huge pitfalls to that plan. And frankly, I don't think there are enough people that meet your criteria in this state - disabled enough to require 24/7 monitoring, yet stable enough for an in-home setting - to fill a single Cabrini-Green high-rise, let alone bankrupt the system.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

If money was no issue I would be for whatever care met the needs. Post WW2 we had what seemed unlimited funds and made laws reflecting spending without thoughts of how we would eventually pay.

Same with housing for the poor. If it felt right, we did it. Cabrini-Green is just an example of this type thought. Using the analogy in comparison to home health support of how a good intended program like providing low income housing became a huge financial sink hole.

I tend to think in terms of how many tax payers it takes to do X. Or John Q Disabled takes 25 taxpayers to fund one year of support. Don't get me started on military spending.

In home care the numbers are growing no doubt about this. How many severely handicapped students do we have in Douglas County per year? Each year we send out more and more.

Notatota, I have no answer to how many are being cared for. Think though, almost every larger county used to operate a home for the disabled, larger cities too, then the state and this was years ago. We must assume the numbers are larger now. Add in the growing Autism spectrum citizens needing supervision and must believe this is a growing population.

For the sake of debate let's use the number 100 as the people needing 24 - 7 support in Douglas County. (I do know there are a few group living situations) For this discussion lets use 100. So, right off the bat we have at least 100 staff, not to mention how many it takes to do a 24-7 supervision.

I assume these are reasonably paid positions. Mind boggling.

If anything, I would be for highly regulated state and county homes again.

Bob_Keeshan 4 years ago

"Post WW2 we had what seemed unlimited funds"... because the debt was the highest ever and government spending per capita was also the highest ever.

You really are clueless as to actual facts, but keep clinging to your strongly held impressions.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

bob_ You do realize we the U.S.A. paid for putting the civilized world back together don't you? Where do you think we got the money to rebuild Europe, from soda taxes? Japan looked like the face of the moon mi amigo.

The rest of the free world, and parts of the un- free world owe use trillions. Add this to the war of poverty, the space race, and the cold war. You have some serious dough floating around.

You my friend are clueless.

We do not have this kind of money anymore.

notanota 4 years ago

You do realize that we in the USA now pay a historically low percentage of our GDP in taxes? We do indeed have this kind of money. We just choose not to collect it.

notanota 4 years ago

Why don't you get back to me with some actual figures, and then you can tell me how disabled people aren't worth helping because the highest income bracket needs to keep those historically low tax rates. Shared sacrifice. As long as you're not rich.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

Autie....I have seen staff from some of these place qualify for more federal and/or state assistance than the client they were supporting.

This is why I suggested perhaps looking at another type of care. There will be more people needing services with less money to pay them. Sadly we need to deal with the notion we are going to have less of the pie for any government agency.

There is simply less pie.

notanota 4 years ago

No. There's not less pie. We've just chosen to let corporations and wealthy individuals keep disproportionately large slices of their pie.

Scott Morgan 4 years ago

This is the last post on this topic. I knew it would swing to the side of I don't care about disabled people. I do. Very much. If you folks only knew.

I was bringing up some alternatives, because folks, these people we are serving will not be able to argue. I believe things are going to happen over the next few years which will put us all in some degree of economic pain.

Look how easy it is to cut this program.

Autie even noted because we are scrimping already regarding pay some abuse is noted. I cringed reading that.

notanota 4 years ago

I think you're grossly misinterpreting how the money is spent and opining without any real facts or figures. You've made a random guess about a population without knowing real numbers, without knowing the salaries, without knowing the funding sources, etc. It's precisely because the most vulnerable of these individuals cannot speak for themselves that it is so dangerous to suggest that one-size-fits-all solutions are better alternatives.

voyagetaker 4 years ago

Our company knew that there would be drastic cutbacks to Kansans with disabilities with the election of Sam Brownback. We have trouble fighting "Republican Christians" who fail to understand that to "love your neighbor as yourself" means all neighbors, not just the rich ones. Those of us who devote our lives to helping those who cannot help themselves are afraid that this governor will not look for other ways to help these people but just reduce or eliminate the help they have depended upon for years. I have always been told that when one door closes another one opens. Let us hope that the opening door does not come too far behind the one that has just closed. To the governor who is going to a prayer meeting in Texas: Be sure to pray for those Kansans who just had the door slammed in their face.

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