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Archive for Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Justice Department to look at waiting list for Kansans with physical disabilities

April 24, 2012

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— Federal officials have sent the U.S. Justice Department complaints that the state of Kansas is not doing enough to provide assistance for thousands of Kansans with physical disabilities who are stuck on a waiting list for services for upwards of three years.

The development comes as state legislators are set to resume the 2012 legislative session on Wednesday and work on the budget, which includes funding for those with disabilities.

It also follows talks and meetings between the Office of Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and state officials, including Gov. Sam Brownback and his leadership team.

Frank Campbell, regional manager for the Office of Civil Rights, said in a letter that his office "has concluded that voluntary resolution of the issues will not be possible."

Campbell adds, "Based on that determination, we have decided to refer our ADA (Americans With Disabilities Act) compliance review to the Department of Justice for further investigation and proceedings."

U.S. Attorney for the District of Kansas Barry Grissom's office and the Justice Department are meeting to consider further action.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services was unsuccessful in an attempt to negotiate a consent decree with the state of Kansas to assure that people with physical disabilities in Kansas have access to the services they need to live in the community and avoid institutionalization, a statement from Grissom's office said.

"The government's goal was to protect the rights of the physically disabled and at the same time to seek a cost-effective solution and to avoid litigation," said Grissom. "Unfortunately those negotiations were not successful," he said.

Shannon Jones, executive director of the Statewide Independent Living Council of Kansas, said the state needs to increase funding for the services instead of spending money on legal fees to fight the federal government.

"We are going to spend more money on a lawsuit with the federal government instead of spending it on people waiting for services for three years. It just makes me sick to my stomach," Jones said.

Jones said the entire waiting list could be served with an increase of $33 million, but that advocates have said maintaining a one-year waiting list would be a good compromise.

At issue is enforcement of what is known as the Olmstead ruling. That is a U.S. Supreme Court decision that says states must provide services to people with disabilities to enable them to be more integrated in the community.

There are approximately 3,500 Kansans with physical disabilities on a waiting list for those kinds of services. In addition there are approximately 3,900 people with developmental disabilities on a separate waiting list. Many remain on the waiting lists for three years or more.

Democratic legislators said more funds must be dedicated to reduce the waiting lists.

"At a time when we have $500 million in the bank, it is very difficult for us to look at people who are on a waiting list and say, we don't have the ability to help you," said House Minority Leader Paul Davis of Lawrence.

Comments

deec 2 years, 3 months ago

Looks like another component of Brownie's jobs program. More work for lawyers defending ridiculous laws and policies.

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optimist 2 years, 3 months ago

This is a long standing issue that is only being addressed now for political reasons by an administration that couldn't mange a budget if our children's future depended on it. Oh wait, it does.

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Jimo 2 years, 3 months ago

You mean: has to be addressed now BECAUSE of political reasons, a/k/a, the desire of a certain Party of the 1% that wants to fund more tax breaks by defunding the poor and needy.

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goodcountrypeople 2 years, 3 months ago

Most states are much more advanced in this area than KS, the most backward place for civil rights I've ever had the misfortune to land in. One thing ordinary people can do is just please live and let live. Patronizing attitudes, especially on the part of complete strangers, do not make Lawrence a very welcoming place for anyone perceived as having a physical limitation. It's pathetic that even someone with a small issue like a bad knee can not get from point A to point B on foot or public transportation because of all the busybody, misguided wannabe helpers who seem not realize that other people have minds and spirits, and a little problem like a bad leg would not and should not be magnified by anyone but intellectually challenged mountain people. "The friends of the born nurse/are always getting worse." Not everyone is an extrovert, and dealing with such aggressive, in-your-face ignorance becomes an ordeal. Please respect others' dignity and right to independence! You're scaring people. Dumb people who refuse to respect boundaries are terrifying.

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goodcountrypeople 2 years, 3 months ago

Most states are much more advanced in this area than KS, the most backward place for civil rights I've ever had the misfortune to land in. One thing ordinary people can do is just please live and let live. Patronizing attitudes, especially on the part of complete strangers, do not make Lawrence a very welcoming place for anyone perceived as having a physical limitation. It's pathetic that even someone with a small issue like a bad knee can not get from point A to point B on foot or public transportation because of all the busybody, misguided wannabe helpers who seem not realize that other people have minds and spirits, and a little problem like a bad leg would not and should not be magnified by anyone but intellectually challenged mountain people. "The friends of the born nurse/are always getting worse." Not everyone is an extrovert, and dealing with such aggressive, in-your-face ignorance becomes an ordeal. Please respect others' dignity and right to independence! You're scaring people. Dumb people who refuse to respect boundaries are terrifying.

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Flap Doodle 2 years, 3 months ago

Psst, there are no mountains near Lawrence. You seem to be geographically challenged.

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JustNoticed 2 years, 3 months ago

I'll bet those "intellectually challenged mountain people" could figure out how to post something just once. "goodcountrypeople" ... You really pack a lot of mythology into a screen name just to prove you're on the wrong side of the story. Terrifying.

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Kendall Simmons 2 years, 3 months ago

Why should the world stop offering acts of kindness simply because you don't like them? There are far more of us...both introverts and extroverts...to whom those small acts of kindness actually are meaningful, actually helpful...and we appreciate them.

No matter how many times you change your username, that doesn't change the fact that your own words make it sound like you actually do have a serious problem...but it has nothing to do with your knee. So don't expect the world to change. Change yourself...because you're the only one who can.

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JayhawksandHerd 2 years, 3 months ago

Considering how often you practically copy-and-paste the same rant, one would think you could do so without spelling and/or grammatical errors. That goes for your other username as well. Again, feel free to move back east any time.

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Flap Doodle 2 years, 3 months ago

Meanwhile, the feds ignore hate crimes when the "right" people are being assaulted. http://minx.cc/?post=328694

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Jimo 2 years, 3 months ago

How is someone spewing racial epithets at others, pulling knives on them, threatening to attack them, and already having a booking sheet as long as your arm, turned into the victim(!) when he gets beaten up? Just because someone creates a confrontation based on his own racial prejudice, does not transform itself into a reverse-racial event when the instigator ends up on the losing end of the fight he picked.

Maybe links to white supremacist websites aren't the best approach in pushing a bigoted agenda on the rest of us, no?

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rockchalker52 2 years, 3 months ago

gcp, this about the umpteenth time you've posted about your intellectual superiority and your distaste for the people here. There are a lot of LJWorld posters who chap my hide, but you take the cake, sister/mister. Since you seem to think you're everything & a bag of chips, it's puzzling that you don't have the smarts or the resources to move away.

What pleasure or relief do you get from these vitriolic posts?

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JayhawksandHerd 2 years, 3 months ago

"...If there's ever a time in history to milk the government for freebies, it surely is now. "

Agreed. One need not look further than the Koch brothers as a prime example.

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deec 2 years, 3 months ago

Or locally, those certain few developers who are begging at city hall for more free money and infrastructure improvements .

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Cait McKnelly 2 years, 3 months ago

Just ask the oil industry. Every GOP rep in Washington screamed like a pig stuck under a gate when the very IDEA of cutting off oil subsidies was mentioned.

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Flap Doodle 2 years, 3 months ago

You're looking forward to $10 per gallon oil?

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Flap Doodle 2 years, 3 months ago

You're simply repeating the Mope's talking points without actually thinking about what you are saying?

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Cait McKnelly 2 years, 3 months ago

Well, I'm all for letting them their keep their subsidies so long as we put tariffs on any oil they export. Believe me, they would rather have the subsidies cut than do that.

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BigDog 2 years, 3 months ago

Maybe we ought to look closer at the program ...... why is this waiver physical disability waiver growing faster than all of the rest including the aging, which is our fastest growing population.

Why is the cost per person growing at a rate significantly higher than the other programs? The same people who have brought in the federal government at the same people making money with these increased numbers served and ever incresing cost per person.

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deec 2 years, 3 months ago

Costs may be rising as the population ages. Boomers are not immune to age-related disabilities like strokes. Medical inflation is a real problem. http://www.fas-eba.com/files/47042264.pdf

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Alceste 2 years, 3 months ago

We must trust the legislators....just as the Judicial sector of Kansas was to do.....jeesshhh.....; Yee of little faith......

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CheneyHawk 2 years, 3 months ago

Prince Sam made his money the old fashioned way, he married into it. He has never held a real job and is very poorly skilled at managing other people's money. He has not lived in the real world and has no concept of day to day living of Kansans. His tenure as Gov continues to disappoint.

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oldbaldguy 2 years, 3 months ago

Kansas should be ashamed of itself. There is no private sector remedy. Brownback is not the sole culprit, there was a waiting list under Graves and Sebelius.

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equalaccessprivacy 2 years, 3 months ago

Street abuse is a crime. Doubt the thousands of mindless locals (who seem all the same in the way they show incredible disrespect by threatening the free movement of others and preventing their rightful use of public space) who aggressively single out and approach strangers in public for discriminatory reasons can even read. Kinky molesters who lack the self-restraint not to grab others or paw their belongings do the devil's work! It's probably kinder to call them mountain people than hillbillies, but people who are interfering with others' sense of safety do not deserve much tact. Most of the people who read and post on the LJWorld are strangers to the concept of understatement anyway--so much hateful attacking of others in lieu of serious consideration of issues.

Yes, it's at at least a low-level hate crime to bother others in public for discriminatory reasons. Get a clue. You may have been brainwashed to think otherwise, but you're not helping. How dare you approach strangers who have every right to be spared your ungodly ignorance? You are showing incredible and offensive blindness to the fundamental dignity and equal rights of your fellow humans. The Justice Department is usually into whitewashing, so the fact they'd force KS into compliance shows things are pretty crappy here.

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Flap Doodle 2 years, 3 months ago

Do you know goodie? You both have this strange idea that Lawrence is overrun with "mountain people".

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JayhawksandHerd 2 years, 3 months ago

For the third time, goodcountrypeople, please leave Lawrence if its population fails to suit your sensibilities.

And where are these mountains of which you speak? I grew up in the Appalachian region and, while they certainly aren't the tallest mountains around, they do overshadow any hills Kansas has to offer. Mount Oread may offer a decent hike, but I wouldn't qualify it as a "mountain" by any stretch of the imagination.

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Jimo 2 years, 3 months ago

You mean the disabled can't ring up Brownback like the Koch Bros. do and get a chance to advocate for their own concerns?

As Santorum once said to a woman in a wheelchair, losing her home to a predatory Grand Old Wall Street Party bank: God helps them that help themselves.

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JayhawksandHerd 2 years, 3 months ago

Sure they can, as long as they have the requisite $$$. If not, it's clearly some sort of moral failing on their part.

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Kyle Chandler 2 years, 3 months ago

You guys are doing great over here today at the ol ljworld.com

All of the usual players arent going on about 'Bama' this or 'Liberal' that, instead today we have great phrases like 'recent research from JPMorgan Chase shows' and so on

keep up the good work...all 8 of you

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George Lippencott 2 years, 3 months ago

Why must the courts be used to make equitable distributio0n of our taxes. Why can we just not commit more of what we are taking in toward properly managed education and social services. We could use the increases to try to move toward better management. No one benefits from legal fees (except the lawyers). We all benefit from batter managed education and social services.

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begin60 2 years, 3 months ago

I sure hope the Justice Department takes into account the level of criminal brutality and lies KU officials and other local "pillars of the community" are willing to stoop to blame discrimination victims and otherwise hide their own incompetence and malfeasance in violating civil rights laws. KU officials cannot legally allow specific students and workers to be offensively singled out and treated differently for discriminatory reasons, especially after complaints have been made. They have a legal obligation to put an end to the uncivilized mob psychology that celebrates street harassment and enables discrimination. It's an unjust and corrupt state of affairs.A neighborly approach to politics and the law might work fine when your neighbors are decent people, but here it's all about nepotism, conflict-of-interest ,and muzzling people who have been screwed over.

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JayhawksandHerd 2 years, 3 months ago

Wow, three different usernames in one thread. Impressive!

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Flap Doodle 2 years, 3 months ago

Relax and have a popsicle, angry dudes/dudettes. It's a cool and fruity treat on a spring evening.

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