Developmental Disabilities

Citizens with Developmental Disabilities
4:49 pm
Thu July 25, 2013

DHH Secretary: Disability Services Still A Priority, Despite Funding Veto

Dept. of Health and Hospitals Secretary Kathy Kliebert
Credit Louisiana Dept. of Health and Hospitals

At the close of the recent legislative session, Gov. Bobby Jindal vetoed additional funding to pay for services for the developmentally disabled.

Two weeks ago, an effort to override the veto failed.

The $3.9 million would have covered a partial year of comprehensive at-home disability services for an additional 200 people through what are called "New Opportunity Waivers".

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Special Session
4:24 pm
Tue July 2, 2013

Speaker Against Special Session

Leadership of the Louisiana state legislature is speaking out against the Democrat minority push to call a special veto session.

Democrats want a session to address Governor Jindal’s line-item vetoes to strike funding to expand care for the developmentally disabled.

House Speaker Chuck Kleckley said in a statement that a veto session could produce unintended consequences.

Citizens with Developmental Disabilities
8:15 am
Thu May 2, 2013

Proponents of Community-Based Waiver Supports Call For More Funding

Decked out in yellow shirts, proponents of community-based waiver supports for the developmentally disabled rallied at the state capitol.
Credit WRKF

Despite the threat of rain, proponents of state-funded supports that allow developmentally disabled individuals to live at home – rather than in institutions or group homes – rallied at the state capitol Wednesday.

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Citizens with Developmental Disabilities
1:00 am
Tue April 16, 2013

De-Institutionalizing Louisiana, Part Two: Demand vs. Expansion

The chapel at St. Mary's Residential Training School in Boyce, La.
Credit St. Mary's Residential Training School

In Boyce, La., St. Mary’s Residential Training School offers both residential care and educational services for individuals with developmental disabilities.

This concludes our two-part series on the state’s goal to wind down the number of individuals living in places like St. Mary’s.

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Citizens with Developmental Disabilities
1:00 am
Mon April 15, 2013

De-Institutionalizing Louisiana, Part One: Waivers vs. Facilities

Roberta Fontenot, 70, once lived in the state's largest institution for individuals with developmental disabilities. She now lives in her own apartment on waiver supports.
Credit WRKF

Louisiana's efforts to move more individuals with developmental disabilities out of congregate living and back into the home with supports actually started pretty late compared to the rest of the country.

In the 1980s when other states were beginning to shut down their large, state-run facilities as part of the national de-institutionalization movement, Louisiana was still building. Only in 2005, after Hurricane Katrina forced the shutdown of the New Orleans metropolitan facility did the state start ramping up its de-institutionalizing efforts.

This is the first of a two-part series exploring the progress of that effort over the years since.

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