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Families for Families Information Session

The Arc Connecticut Announces A Grassroots Campaign to Address the
Urgent Needs of Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

September 18, 2012, Hartford, CT—The Arc Connecticut is launching a grassroots campaign designed to draw attention to a two-fold problem: the critical needs of the State's hundreds of families and individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) and the inability of the State and federal government to provide the necessary infrastructure, resources, and vision to adequately serve this fragile population.

Under the new leadership of Leslie Simoes, Executive Director, The Arc Connecticut will kick off Families for Families at an information session on Saturday, September 29, 2012 from 9:30 –11:30 a.m. at The Arc of Meriden/Wallingford, 200 Research Parkway, Meriden CT.

The goal of Families for Families is to establish and mobilize a state-wide network of families and individuals to educate, engage, and empower one another to effectively communicate a message that individuals with I/DD deserve the right to grow and thrive in the communities of their choosing, while it also points to the lack of sufficient infrastructure, resources and vision necessary to promote those rights.

In its message, Families for Families will focus on the key issues of individual and family choice, the Waiting List crisis, the increasing number of children on the Autism Spectrum who are aging into adulthood, and the need for wiser allocation of existing resources as a means to increase supports.

The three-pronged communication strategy will involve families, legislators, and members of the print, broadcast and online media.

The September 29th event is open to all interested persons including individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, families, siblings, case managers, direct support professionals in both the public and private sector. To reserve a seat, please email.

• Department of Developmental Services Commissioner Dr. Terrance Macy stated recently, "There is no Waiting List in Connecticut because there is nothing to wait for." (Trades meeting, September 5, 2012.) There are only sufficient resources to support individuals in a residential setting for emergency placements (approximately 40 people).

• Supports and services for individuals with disabilities are for the most part funded by Medicaid, which will be drastically cut on the federal level.

• The State of Connecticut has a growing budget deficit that will seriously impact social services including vital respite, day, and residential services.

• The DDS operating budget is currently one billion dollars and serves approximately 15,858 individuals with I/DD. This number includes "all active DDS clients." (Management Information Report, June 2012).