Why county needs the developmental disabilities levy

Published 2:14 pm Thursday, August 29, 2019

Election season is upon us and, with that comes many decisions that families must make. One of those decisions will be for the Lawrence County Developmental Disabilities and their levy.

As a parent of two children that receive services through LCDD and also as a regional coordinator for Parent Advocacy Connection, I see first hand how important the services and the need for those services are.

Many people think that LCDD only helps children or only helps those with certain disabilities. LCDD provides services from birth throughout a lifetime for those who qualify.

Email newsletter signup

Their impact on young children with early intervention (ages birth to 3) is so important to their development. To a new parent, it can be scary and overwhelming trying to navigate the world for a special needs child and early intervention helps ease the worry.

Open Door helps with the education of school-aged children that may not otherwise be able to handle or flourish in a regular public school setting. The new school is such an asset to the community and especially to the kids who get to walk in to such a bright and beautiful building that is so much safer and easier to maneuver for those with limited mobility.

For adults, they help guide them to live the best life that they can. They can help with career exploration or job coaching. They provide services that help impact the quality of life for individuals and families. It’s so much cheaper to keep people living with their families or help them to live independently rather than sending them to live in a residential facility. LCDD helps adults learn life skills that so many of us take for granted but those in the DD world really need.

In between all of that, LCDD is still so much more. The SSA’s (Service and Support Administrator) are a vital piece to families and individuals. Their person-centered approach to services lets a person voice what works and doesn’t work. They are there to listen to concerns and celebrate victories. They help locate funds for needs for a family or individual and help to coordinate services among agencies or an individual. They are also there in times of a crisis to assist with emergency situations 24 hours a day.

As much as no one wants to pay extra money for taxes, this levy is so important. Lawrence County Developmental Disabilities runs many of these services on a skeleton budget. Without their services, families and individuals would fall through the cracks and the outcome for many would be bleak. Not one of their services are not needed. Whether it be a one year old, an eight-year-old or an eighty-year-old, they are all important and need the services that the Lawrence County Developmental Disabilities can offer. Individuals need the support and skills that are offered along with their families. I know that my family has appreciated everything that LCDD has done. Everything from Early Intervention to Open Door. We will soon be entering the adult world with our children but with the help and services that LCDD offers, we hope to make it as easy as possible for them.

Please consider supporting the many people that utilize and need the services from Lawrence County Developmental Disabilities by voting for the levy this November.

Karen Reed