Saturday, March 08, 2008

Formerly institutionalized residents placed in own homes

Melvin Wilson takes immaculate care of his apartment. He learned how to clean his home and now diligently does his chores each morning. A closet contains neat rows of shoes and jeans that are folded with precision. At a former group home, he said, people used to disturb his belongings.

A new Washington, D.C., program is placing people who previously lived in institutions into small houses and apartments where they can become more independent. "I think one of the biggest problems that disabled people address is how they see themselves and how others see them -- see us," said Judith E. Heumann, director of the D.C. Department on Disability Services, who herself uses a wheelchair. "And when you live in a community in a more integrated setting like other people, you begin to be seen less as the oddity and more like a member of the community." The Washington Post

Promethean Planet

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