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This makes me sick. As a parent of a disabled child who will remain disabled well into his adult life, the fact that these residents are fighting with the Commissioner to not have group homes built in their neighborhood is just disgusting. These group homes are for adults with physical and mental disabilities. Living in a group home will give these people a chance at living in a home instead of a hospital. These homes will be run by professional companies that have millions of government regulations they HAVE to abide by; these homes will also be staffed with full-time nurses as many of these patients have trachs, feeding tubes, & severe disabilities. These York County residents should be ashamed of their behavior. Instead of fighting this, they should spend a little of their time volunteering at group homes like this so they can get a new perspective on life.


Residents fight proposed group home

WAVY/Andy Fox
WAVY/Andy Fox

YORK COUNTY, Va. (WAVY) - Not in my backyard -- that's what people in York County are saying about a group home planned for their neighborhood. Wednesday night residents fought against the facility at a public hearing.

You can see the sign at the front of the Lackey neighborhood: “Help fight the 3 mental facilities planned for this neighborhood.”

The controversy surrounds Colonial Behavioral Health’s proposal to build three group homes for 12 adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities in the Lackey neighborhood, off Old Williamsburg Road.

The homes would replace CBH's current group home program that uses leased apartments in York County. Part of the reason for the change is because David Coe with CBH says it's important for the special needs adults to have their own bedrooms and back yards.

But local residents don't want to share their backyards. Dozens of people signed up to speak about the issue in front of elected officials at a public hearing Wednesday night at York Hall on Main Street.

Some residents voiced concern because they feel as if they haven't had a say in this process. Others feel as if the homes could bring dangerous people -- such as those suffering from schizophrenia, bi polar disorder, or substance abuse -- near the place they live. And some say the group homes will bring down property values.

Coe says law won't allow people with substance abuse problems to move into the group homes

The hearing began at 7 p.m. and lasted more than three hours. Border commissioners asked CBH to consider building two homes instead of three, but Coe would not compromise.

"It's all three or none," he said at the hearing.

Despite Coe's resistance, the Planning Commission voted three to one to recommend a two-group-home proposal instead of three group homes. The final decision has not yet been made -- the recommendation will go before the Board of Supervisors, who will put an end to the dispute.


by on Sep. 16, 2013 at 6:41 PM
Replies (11-20):
anchorgurl
by Silver Member on Sep. 16, 2013 at 7:36 PM
1 mom liked this

 There was something similar that happened where one of my sisters lives; a man bought a big house in a development and retrofitted it to make it work for a group home.  A bunch of the residents got together to try and fight it and in the end found out that you can't discriminate against people with disabilities with regard to housing.  The house is now one of the cutest, and best-kept, properties on the lane.  It actually houses four men with Down Syndrome and they work in the yard, plant flowers, and take a lot of pride in their house.

There are very few of us who do not have a family member or relative with a disability (me included).  I expect that my 10 year old niece with Down Syndrome will live somewhat independently when she is an adult and I would hope that people would welcome her to their neighborhood.  If they don't...well, they'll be dealing with one unhappy Auntie.

darbyakeep45
by Darby on Sep. 16, 2013 at 7:36 PM

They are trying to build some group homes in Newport News too.  Not sure about the other side of the water, but Virginia is a state where politicians are big on helping the disabled.  I watched this on the news tonight.  It was sweet to see these people in their new home.  They were SO happy.  One man was in a wheelchair, couldn't even hold his head up, had a trach and a feeding tube, but was smiling!  His nurse said that he wasn't happy in the hospital where he has lived most of his life, but once he moved into this new group home, he was much happier.  The nurse was crying as she was on the news...she couldn't believe what a difference it made for them.  These people are humans too...they deserve to live in a home.

Quoting SlapItHigh:

Oh wow, I haven't heard of this.  I try not to watch the news.  I hope they are not successful in their attempts to stop this.


darbyakeep45
by Darby on Sep. 16, 2013 at 7:37 PM

Love to hear that!  How sweet those men would just work in the yard and make it their own home...that is what life is all about!  My son will always live with us...I know how you feel about your niece:)

Quoting anchorgurl:

 There was something similar that happened where one of my sisters lives; a man bought a big house in a development and retrofitted it to make it work for a group home.  A bunch of the residents got together to try and fight it and in the end found out that you can't discriminate against people with disabilities with regard to housing.  The house is now one of the cutest, and best-kept, properties on the lane.  It actually houses four men with Down Syndrome and they work in the yard, plant flowers, and take a lot of pride in their house.

There are very few of us who do not have a family member or relative with a disability (me included).  I expect that my 10 year old niece with Down Syndrome will live somewhat independently when she is an adult and I would hope that people would welcome her to their neighborhood.  If they don't...well, they'll be dealing with one unhappy Auntie.


luckystars2012
by Member on Sep. 16, 2013 at 7:38 PM
My aunt lived near one of those group homes and there was all kinds of trouble. One "differently abled" man who was going round showing his penis to children , a woman who stole mail, another who yelled at anyone who made eye contact as he walked down the street. I remember one young man with autism having some kind of meltdown in the street because he missed the ice cream truck, and broke a car window. i would fight this too.
TonyaLea
by Silver Member on Sep. 16, 2013 at 7:40 PM
1 mom liked this

That is awesome, and really why group homes are so great.  I didn't think about it till after you mentioned this, but my great grandma was in a group home for Alzheimer's patients when she got bad enough that she could no longer live at home.  It was ab home and not a hospital, and she was happy there.  There were 5 patients and one couple that took care of them, just a regular house in a regular neighborhood, they each had their own room, and you would never know anything "different" was going on there.  When she got really bad they used to curl her hair and paint her nails and she would be full of smiles.

Quoting darbyakeep45:

I think they are ignorant or perhaps misinformed...or they are just assuming things.  This was on the local news tonight...the footage they showed of these patients was just precious.  This one man in a wheelchair has lived most of his life in a hospital, very grumpy and not a happy man, but after moving in his new group home, he was smiling.  He has a trach and a feeding tube and couldn't even hold his head up, but he was happy...that is what life is about.  

Quoting TonyaLea:

That is sad.  My Brother in Law is autistic and lives in a group home, it has been such a good thing for him and helped him develop skills he needs to live alone.  He just got authorized to get his own apartment with intermittent supervision, and he is SO excited.  I don't understand how these people think that it will negatively impact their community, they are making it sound like the homes are for psychological disorders, not mental disabilities.  I wonder if there is truth to that, or if they are just ignorant as to what a group home for disabled adults is.



Caera
by on Sep. 16, 2013 at 7:41 PM

After the way the market tanked, I don't blame them. I'm sure a lot of people are still clawing their way out from being upside down. I wouldn't want anything that could possibly lower my property value in the neighborhood either.

darbyakeep45
by Darby on Sep. 16, 2013 at 7:41 PM
1 mom liked this

I think there are different kinds of group homes....you may be referring to a different one than this article is speaking about.

I saw the news coverage about these homes.  They showed the patients and people who would be living in these homes.  They are severly disabled...in wheelchairs, with trachs, feeding tubes, and such.  These people can't even walk much less do what you are speaking about below.  These people are human beings too....they deserve to be well cared for.  

Quoting luckystars2012:

My aunt lived near one of those group homes and there was all kinds of trouble. One "differently abled" man who was going round showing his penis to children , a woman who stole mail, another who yelled at anyone who made eye contact as he walked down the street. I remember one young man with autism having some kind of meltdown in the street because he missed the ice cream truck, and broke a car window. i would fight this too.


darbyakeep45
by Darby on Sep. 16, 2013 at 7:43 PM

Having a group home in your neighborhood doesn't mean your house is worth less.  That is ridiculous and there's no data to back it up!  I would much rather have a group home next door to me than my current neighbors who don't take care of anything...their house and yard looks like shit.  They have 8 children who don't help with anything and they leave their crap everywhere!  It's horrible to look at and they make my house look bad.  So, I would personally rather have a group home next to me...at least I would know the yard would be mowed, cleaned, and the house would be kept nice.  Geez.

Quoting Caera:

After the way the market tanked, I don't blame them. I'm sure a lot of people are still clawing their way out from being upside down. I wouldn't want anything that could possibly lower my property value in the neighborhood either.


Caera
by on Sep. 16, 2013 at 7:44 PM

I wouldn't even want to risk it.

Quoting darbyakeep45:

Having a group home in your neighborhood doesn't mean your house is worth less.  That is ridiculous and there's no data to back it up!  I would much rather have a group home next door to me than my current neighbors who don't take care of anything...their house and yard looks like shit.  They have 8 children who don't help with anything and they leave their crap everywhere!  It's horrible to look at and they make my house look bad.  So, I would personally rather have a group home next to me...at least I would know the yard would be mowed, cleaned, and the house would be kept nice.  Geez.

Quoting Caera:

After the way the market tanked, I don't blame them. I'm sure a lot of people are still clawing their way out from being upside down. I wouldn't want anything that could possibly lower my property value in the neighborhood either.



luckystars2012
by Member on Sep. 16, 2013 at 7:45 PM
The one in my aunts neighborhood was for "differently abled adults". There were I think ten people in the home plus the nurses and such. There were a couple that were wheelchair bound and unable to feed themselves and whatnot but most were "independent". Things like autism and such. Which is fine. I have an autistic cousin and I agree that they deserve a home too. But with the problems that I've seen, a special needs home doesn't belong in a family community.

The worst part was that everything was brushed under the rug because they were "special", I cluding the guy who showed he penis.


Quoting darbyakeep45:

I think there are different kinds of group homes....you may be referring to a different one than this article is speaking about.

I saw the news coverage about these homes.  They showed the patients and people who would be living in these homes.  They are severly disabled...in wheelchairs, with trachs, feeding tubes, and such.  These people can't even walk much less do what you are speaking about below.  These people are human beings too....they deserve to be well cared for.  

Quoting luckystars2012:

My aunt lived near one of those group homes and there was all kinds of trouble. One "differently abled" man who was going round showing his penis to children , a woman who stole mail, another who yelled at anyone who made eye contact as he walked down the street. I remember one young man with autism having some kind of meltdown in the street because he missed the ice cream truck, and broke a car window. i would fight this too.



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