Month: September 2017

The Police Need to Understand Autism

By Steve Silberman

Diane Craglow was caring for a 14-year-old autistic boy named Connor Leibel in Buckeye, Ariz., one day in July. They took a walk to one of his favorite places, a park in an upscale community called Verrado. She was not hesitant to leave Connor alone for a few minutes while she booked a piano lesson for his sister nearby, because he usually feels safe and comfortable in places that are familiar to him, and he learns to be more independent that way.

When Ms. Craglow returned, she couldn’t believe what she saw: a police officer looming over the now-handcuffed boy, pinning him to the ground against a tree. Connor was screaming, and the police officer, David Grossman, seemed extremely agitated. Continue reading

Our Daughters at Mercy of Stalled Connecticut Budget

By Adrienne Benjamin and Arlene Reith

We are two moms who met recently and although we are different in many ways — one a Republican and one a Democrat — we share a deep bond.

Our daughters, Sarah and Zoe, have never met but have a lot in common. They are 21-year-old women who have severe intellectual disabilities and autism. They just graduated from their school programs. But their graduation has not brought celebration.

The lack of a state budget is not an abstraction for our families. It means no funding for the daily program our girls urgently need. The Department of Developmental Services offers programs with structure, activities and goals to work toward. Our daughters are among the 330 new graduates who are waiting for the funding of these core services. They have waited more than two months so far. Continue reading

No More Free Parking in Hartford for Accessible Permit Holders

By Cyrus Dos Santos – September 1, 2017

HARTFORD, CT — The capital city will no longer offer free metered parking for commuters with disabilities starting today.

But the head of the Hartford Parking Authority said it’s not about increasing revenues for a city flirting with bankruptcy.

“It’s too difficult to determine if a valid permit is used validly,” Hartford Parking Authority CEO Eric Boone said Wednesday. He also stated that current laws make enforcing violations extremely difficult.

According to a Hartford Parking Authority website, one in six vehicles at a meter displays an accessible parking permit. The website goes on to say this indicates that “there is a significant amount of permit abuse.” Continue reading