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Arizona Early Intervention Freeze

Posted by on Feb. 19, 2009 at 8:04 PM
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I knew that cuts would be made but this is a bit drematic.  There is a freeze on allowing children to enter the Early Intervention program until further notice.  Children with a current IEP will continue to get services until the IEP expires then at that point services will not continue unless the "freeze" is lifted.  So for now my son will get services through at least June.  Right now  they are saying there is supposed to be money in the Economic Recovery Plan that just passed but they are not sure how or when they will get it.  But I know a family that just had baby with DS that will not be getting services at this point.  I think this in an important time, for those of us who can, to try to reach out to families like this and support them the best way we can.  I have been taIking with the President of our local DS Connection group as well as Pilot Parents of Southern AZ and I have an appointment with the social workers at the local hospital to make them aware of what is happening and to give them information on who to contact  to give new families at least some emotional support at this time.  Yes it is horrible that funding has been cut but hopefully in the interim we can all find a way to support each other.  I posted this mostly so you can be aware that this can happen in your state as well. 

by on Feb. 19, 2009 at 8:04 PM
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Replies (1-8):
by Member on Feb. 20, 2009 at 12:19 AM

Sounds illegal....

by Member on Feb. 20, 2009 at 9:48 AM

Sadly it feels like political positioning to try to the most funding possible but it is putting several families in limbo. 

by Silver Member on Feb. 20, 2009 at 10:12 AM

Wow, that is a bit drastic, to say the least!  Maybe your local group could do some playgroups that focus on PT, OT, or speech?  Maybe a few of the "seasoned" moms can get together to organize some groups -- a few of the therapists may even be willing to present on a voluntary basis.  A lot of work, but that would be the kind of support that new parents will need until Arizona gets it's issues worked out.

Plus, I agree with SandiegoMaxmom, isn't this illegal?  Especially for those children who already have IFSPs or IEPs? 

by Member on Feb. 20, 2009 at 5:33 PM

I did talk to several therapist about that very idea about "playgroups" with families with services.  We may start those very soon as well as make sure new moms are still given contact information for support within the community outside of the Early Intervention Program.  As far as it being illegal the federal funds are only for children who need one service.  If they need all three or more services that falls under the state funds.  I don't understant that but that was how it was explained today at the press confrance.

by Member on Feb. 21, 2009 at 6:33 AM

Thanks for posting about this. I didn't think it would ever come to that, but then I've been saying that about a lot of things lately!

Way to go for stepping in to help! You totally rock! 

by Member on Feb. 22, 2009 at 1:36 AM

  Honestly it makes me mad to hear about this. I can't believe they would cut something so important. I do not know what I would do if I did not have these things for my son.

by New Member on Feb. 22, 2009 at 7:34 PM

I am not sure exactly how that is happening. The federal law should be protecting our children from this. That is the point of the Americans with disablilies act, and IDEA laws.  Hopefully things will get changed for you soon. It sounds like in the mean time you have some GREAT ideas!

by New Member on Feb. 28, 2009 at 9:45 PM

I am also in AZ and from what I had understood they were doing budget cuts that were going to make it where are therapist wheren't going to be able to keep being thereapist because they wouldn't be able to live with the decrease in pay. I had not heard of the freeze till now.

My daughter will be moving out of the birth to 3 and going into the preschool may 1st, but she is on the long term care and still will qualify and very much need (Just started sitting at 2yrs & 7mo) in home services, but the therapist aren't going to be there. I am very scared about this. At this point my daughter does no weight baring on her legs, doesn't crawl and does not take any food by mouth. WE NEED ARE THERAPIST. AZ is the worst I have heard of. I have sent email to the goveners office telling the I feel like the are trying to put are kids back in institution where they DO NOT belong.

Sorry just venting because I am so worried for my daughter.

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