Parents plead with lawmakers not to cut services


HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — As the General Assembly inches toward a special session to revise the state budget, concern among many residents about additional spending cuts is growing, especially among hundreds of parents of adult children with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Parents of adult children with intellectual and developmental disabilities, as well as others worried that the the nearly quarter-billion dollars the Governor wants to cut in order to roll back the new taxes on business will mean hardship and setbacks for those who are in need of special help, barraged Democratic lawmakers as they headed into their closed door meeting to discuss revising the recently passed state budget.

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“We’re afraid that this population is not going to get the funding that they so desperately need,” Lauralyn Lewis of Old Lyme said along side of her 23-year-old son. Justin.

Lynn Arezzini of Cos Cob was outside the House Democrats’ caucus room with her 21-year-old son, Karl.

“If they support Karl now, he can benefit society, he can be productive and he won’t be an ’emergency placement’ after we die,” she said. “We’re very concerned about his future.”

The budget that passed earlier this month kept the funding for these adult programs flat. To these parents that was a win. Now they believe that budget revisions will mean big setbacks for their sons and daughters.

“They will not receive support for employment. They will not receive day programs, and they’ll have, they’ll essentially be left with nothing to do but sit around at home,” said Walter Glomb of Vernon, who attended with his 27-year-old son, Nick.

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According to these parents and experts, that would lead to regression; bad for these individuals and probably more expensive in the long run.

Denise King of Lebanon came to the Capitol with her 24-year-old grandson.

“Matthew’s going to have to live with us until we die, and they’ll take him and put him in emergency and put him someplace where he knows no one,” she said. “That’s just, it’s not humane.”

The Governor has said that this can be worked out, that the business taxes can be rolled back and these parents can get the help they need for their sons and daughters. So far, there have been no details on how that would be done.

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