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Old 09-27-2016, 05:02 PM
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Default New York State Is Sued for More Group Homes for the Developmentally Disabled

NYLJ 9/15/16, New York State Is Sued for More Group Homes for the
Developmentally Disabled
Joel Stashenko, New York Law Journal
September 15, 2016
A federal lawsuit seeks to compel New York to provide more space in
group homes for developmentally disabled adults. The action, filed Tuesday
in the Western District of New York in Buffalo, contends that it is the
state's obligation under the Americans with Disabilities Act and other
laws to provide the most independent living space possible for adults with
Down Syndrome and other disabilities. "Defendants have failed, and are
continuing to fail, to plan for and provide sufficient appropriate
residential services ... necessary to prevent the unjustified isolation of
adults with developmental disabilities and prevent the adverse impact on
the residential voluntary caregivers for these adults," the complaint in
E.B. v. Cuomo, 1:16-cv-00725, said. The plaintiffs, disabled adults in
their 20s and 30s living with their elderly parents and other caregivers,
contend that while the 2016-17 budget approved by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and
the state Legislature calls for about 1,500 new community residential
placements for developmentally disabled adults, there are more than 11,000
people on the state waiting list for slots in community-based
residences. About 38,000 disabled people currently live in state-supported
community residences.The suit seeks class-action status for disabled
people seeking group home placements.The state Office for People with
Developmental Disabilities, which receives federal funding, said in a
statement Wednesday that it is developing a five-year plan to increase
available community housing for the disabled as well as improving day- and
respite-care services for families caring for disabled people at home.
Bruce Goldstein, special counsel at Kenney Shelton Liptak Nowak in
Buffalo, is representing the plaintiffs.
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