MOLINARO RELEASES “ThinkDIFFERENTLY:
Building a State of Inclusion”
ThinkDIFFERENTLY is a call to action to create a supportive and welcoming environment for those living with special needs
New York–Oct 22nd…New York gubernatorial candidate Marc Molinaro today released ThinkDIFFERENTLY, a comprehensive plan that will change the wayNew York State serves, treats, and views New Yorkers with physical and developmental disabilities.
The Molinaro plan in its entirety is available for viewing and downloading here.
“Throughout New York State, thousands of residents live with developmental disabilities and other challenges, and they and their families look to government to help them navigate the complex web of services and providers to find the best t for their respective needs. Too often in state government, the left hand doesn’t even know the right hand exists, which is why we need to focus on reforming service delivery to ensure it is better coordinated, more efficient, and, ultimately, more effective.”
Molinaro ThinkDIFFERENTLY: Building a State of Inclusion (abbreviated for news release.)
Improving Service Delivery
- Bring together a panel of families, self-advocates, and service providers to give us insight into the challenges and shortcomings of the current system. This group would generate recommendations on how the state can better serve individuals of all abilities and support the pertinent organizations, agencies, and individuals.
Increasing Employment and Educational Opportunities
- In 2016, the employment rate among working-age adults (ages 21-64) for non-institutionalized individuals with disabilities was 33 percent, while for people without disabilities, it was 78 percent. Additionally, a national survey conducted by The Arc found that “Only 15% of FINDS survey respondents reported that their family member with an intellectual and/or developmental disability was employed.” These gaps are attributable, in part, to massive disparities in educational and employment opportunities for students and workers living with a disability.
Ensuring Accessibility of Public Space and Transportation
- An active and involved citizenry must have access to its government; in fact, it is a fundamental tenet of our democracy. For those living with a disability, accessibility is often a challenge which limits their ability to access services and to fully participate in the political system. Further, public transportation serves a vital role in the lives of many individuals with disabilities, connecting them to jobs, education, healthcare, needed services, and their community.
Protecting the Right and Well-Being of Individuals with Disabilities and their Families
- Over a three-year period, more than 10,000 New Yorkers died while in the care of the state, or a program overseen by the state. In 140 of these deaths, the Justice Center for the Protection of People with Special Needs’ findings indicated abuse or neglect, yet not a single criminal charge was sought. These numbers have left many to question New YorkState’s commitment to protecting individuals with disabilities.