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MiCASSA Charles Schleininger corsair The vast majority of families don't want to place children with disabilities in institutions. Families want children to live at home where they can maintain family ties, go to school & grow as other children do. Families also want to have their children have a secure future & real, options for home & community services & supports when their families are no longer providing full-time care.

Young people with disabilities are not in institutions or foster care because of the amount of care they need. They are in these settings because of the lack of attendant services & supports. Many children with significant disabilities do, in fact, live at home with their families. Some of the real reasons why children & young adults with disabilities go into institutions or nursing homes are:

Parents can't hold down a job that supports their family & provide full-time care to a child with a disability;

Parents may be able to provide much of the care that a young child needs, but may not be physically able to manage lifting & positioning as the child grows;

Parents fear that when their child is old enough to move out of the house, no independent living, community options will be available;

Public policy supports institutions, not people with disabilities & their families;

Family members may not know that there are alternatives to nursing homes & other institutions for their children with disabilities.

MiCASSA would provide Medicaid funding for attendant services & supports for people of all ages. Services could be provided at home, in school, at work & at play. Assistance would be available for a broad range of needs, such as bathing, dressing, meal preparation, money management & certain health-related tasks. MiCASSA would be available to young adults when they move out of their parents home into the community.

(To be continued)

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