We need housing for our loved ones
I am the proud parent of two young adult children with autism who live supported, independent lives. I’ve been helping others not as fortunate as I. For years, I have helped families who face gut-wrenching decisions on where their loved ones with intellectual and developmental disabilities will live once the family can no longer care for them “LI’s state senators band together for housing,” Opinion, The Point, Oct. 15].
Our state leads in the creation of innovative, affordable housing for them, with one caveat: not on Long Island. We and our loved ones are abandoned by New York State, with not one new housing unit for a person with a disability built in Suffolk County with state funding.
Randi F. Marshall sheds light on the bureaucratic delays by the state Office for People with Developmental Disabilities in issuing a simple letter of support to access Suffolk County funding to build this much-needed affordable housing. I don’t understand the delays.
— Trish Calandra, Yaphank
As an aging mom to a 26-year-old adult with autism, I stay awake every night worrying about what will happen when I am gone.
We parents of kids with special needs have fought the system every day for our kids to be safe in our community. It is an exhaustive and isolating experience, from preschool to high school inclusion, and now afterward
Suffolk County is vast with many communities. A sense of place is especially crucial to persons with special needs. Our disabled adults need not only a “placement” but a home and community that gives them continuity and confidence. Paramount is keeping them in the community they know.
What is missing is a place that can be called home in a known environment that’s affordable and safe when I’m no longer around.
Why isn’t the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities issuing letters to developers, seeking this housing? We need smart planning and robust action. And we need it now. Time is ticking.
— Elise Morris, Northport
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