March 15, 1988 |
Despite its remaining deficit, the city Office of Mental Health and Mental Retardation will not allow any mental-retardation programs to close this fiscal year, according to acting Administrator John M. Ciavardone. Ciavardone made the statement yesterday during a meeting of the Mayor's Mental Health/Mental Retardation Advisory Board. Later, in an interview, Ciavardone said that he planned to send letters to all city providers of mental-retardation services, assuring them that - whether it comes from the state or not - they would have the money to continue operating.
November 9, 1986 |
Earlier this year, things weren't going too well for John Thomas Jr., Dan Westund and Ricky Curtis. Like many others without specific job skills, these three young men from West Chester were having a tough time finding work. Thomas, 22, is the most outgoing of the three, always ready with a quick comment, joke or complaint. In the summer of 1985, he had held a job cutting lumber at a mill, but was laid off after seven months. Although he hated to be out of work, he didn't miss the job. "That job was a real pain," Thomas said.
October 11, 1987 |
In March, the last of Ella Matthews' 11 children moved out. Six months later, when she might understandably have relished her new freedom and privacy, she invited Rita Walker to move in. Walker, 21, calls the 56-year-old Matthews "Mom" and "Miss Ella," but Walker is no child and Matthews is not her mother. Walker is mildly retarded and lives with Matthews under a contractual arrangement sponsored by Horizon House, a nonprofit agency that helps the mentally retarded, as well as the mentally ill, the homeless and those with drug and alcohol problems.
February 26, 1988 |
To the cheers of more than 200 mentally retarded people and their families and advocates, City Council yesterday unanimously passed a resolution aimed at easing a budget crisis that threatens to halt mental-retardation services to as many as 1,200 Philadelphia residents. Also yesterday, the first three closings of community mental-retardation programs, which had been scheduled for early next week, appeared to have been temporarily averted with the state's promise Wednesday night to provide $223,000 in emergency funding.
August 11, 2002 |
To thousands of people, mentally and retarded are fighting words. For years, people who are mentally retarded, their families, and professionals who work with them have been wrangling over what to call people with IQs below 70. Advocates for change argue that the word retarded - or more often retard - is now a school-yard taunt, a word too hurtful to be applied to people who want and deserve respect. "That's my pet peeve in life," said Roseann Mosakowski, a Pottsgrove woman whose 15-year-old son suffered a brain injury as an infant and now falls into the category.
February 17, 1988 |
At an infant-stimulation program in Northeast Philadelphia, 16-month-old Megan Murphy, born with Down's syndrome, was going through a series of exercises Thursday designed to teach her how to stand up and, eventually, walk. At a respite-care home on the other side of the city, in Overbrook, Franny Romeo, a 69-year-old mentally retarded woman, sat and counted the money in her purse at the supervised apartment where she moved last year when her sister became too ill to take care of her. Megan and Romeo, though strangers, separated by miles and years, are in the same boat.
February 5, 1986 |
For the last year, Kimberly Cusick, a 22-year-old mentally retarded woman, has spent her days at home - "just sitting around and getting bored," her mother says - too old for public schools, unable to afford a private one and not lucky enough to receive the state services to which she is entitled. With her behavioral problems, she has become more than her mother, Elaine, who is divorced and holding a job, could handle at their home in Kensington. She has been on a list to receive services from the county mental retardation office for nearly two years, but county officials have said that there was no money to place her in a group home or other program.
March 4, 1988 |
More than 100 mentally retarded people - some in wheelchairs, some on crutches, some holding the hands of family members and advocates - rallied in front of the State Office Building in Philadelphia yesterday, demanding that the state and city increase funding for mental-retardation programs. "We are human beings, and nobody has a right to take away our homes," Debra Robinson, who has cerebral palsy, said through a bullhorn as a retarded man held her crutches and an advocate helped her stand.
September 29, 1989 |
A Commonwealth Court judge yesterday granted the Casey administration eight extra days to come up with $7.5 million for programs for mentally retarded Philadelphians. But rather than ask the legislature for the money, the administration is trying to determine whether it can use funds earmarked for other city services, according to a spokeswoman for the state Department of Public Welfare. "Our priority still remains that we're very concerned about those people that have been locked out of programs," spokeswoman Vicki Smink said.
November 19, 1992 |
The walls in the Atrium Building on West Gay Street in downtown West Chester have never looked better. There, on the second floor, the original works of more than 60 area artists can be viewed and purchased as part of Art '92, an annual art show held to benefit the Association of Retarded Citizens/Chester County chapter (ARC/CC). The show, which opened Sunday, is one of the main fund-raising events for ARC/CC, a group dedicated since 1952 to providing a variety of support and growth programs for people with mental retardation and their families.